Cold and Empty House
(Richmond, VA, USA)
Every day I wake up with my two dogs in the bed beside me. My husband's on the road again, and might get two days at home this week.
This is a new experience for me, being alone so much, but the money was better than any local job he could get. I take the dogs out, and feed them- both things I didn't do before he went over the road.
I do some homework, go to school, go to the gym. Around 6pm I can finally call him for the first time of the day. He's been sleeping all day. I tell him about school and other things going on at home. We talk off and on for hours, until 1 or 2am when I fall asleep. I get back up at 7 or 8am and start again.
Sometimes I miss him too much, and I will talk to him back and forth all night long, and not get any sleep. I consider it a small sacrifice considering what he sacrifices to be on the road.
Every Sunday I pack a cooler with a week's worth of provisions. He gets a bag of fresh, folded clothes. On Saturday I've already checked to see what he's going to need me to buy. I try to surprise him with a treat every week that he has to "discover" in his bag.
Sometimes it's a Snickers bar, or his favorite chips. Sometimes it's a huge bag of beef jerky, which is pricier but worth it. Then I take him to his truck (we can't park it at home). I help him load the truck with three or four bags of stuff I've put together, get an extended hug and kiss, and wave goodbye again for another lonely week.
Every Friday I pick up my step-sons. They are older now, and do their own thing. This would have been harder if they were younger, but I'm pretty lucky that they are teenagers. They used to ask where their dad was, but now they know he'll be home eventually. Meeting their mom was something I never did alone before even after seven years of marriage.
How do I stay positive? There are a lot of ways. My husband took this job so he could send me to college. I have a long way to go, but I know that one day I can be the bread winner, and he won't have to be gone every day.
I don't have a job, so I take six classes a semester, and that keeps me busy. I maintain a 3.7 GPA (a very high "B"), and I expect nothing less than that. My best friend is also my roommate. When I'm very lonely, she cheers me up. She also shares some of the house-cleaning responsibility, so I don't get overwhelmed.
I still get very lonely, but I know I'm blessed. Prayer helps me through as well. As long as things keep going smoothly, I feel like I am on the right track, and we are doing what we're supposed to be doing.
I miss him so much. I miss him right now, and I did yesterday too. Every Saturday of home time reminds me that Sunday is right around the corner, and he'll be gone again. But I have also matured so much since he became a truck driver.
My dad's a truck driver, and I only remember him being gone. I never realized how hard this was on my step-mother, and how quiet the house can be for days at a time. When he's home, the house feels alive and inviting, but right now it's cold and empty and quiet.