There is a song rising up the country charts right now, called Don’t Miss Your Life and the lyrics to the song talk about a man on a flight out west, working on his laptop. An older man starts talking to him, and they commiserate about life on the road. About how they’ve missed ball games, and a baby being born, anniversaries, and going out to dinner for good grades. The song ends with the younger man deciding he will just get off the plane when they land and he will get a turn around flight and go home because he doesn’t want to miss his life.
I hate that song. I also hate shows where they romanticize these kind of jobs. I don’t know about all companies, but I know darn well, if Aussie got out to California, turned around and came back to go out to dinner with us, when he was supposed to be working, his job would be in jeopardy. And yes, he misses soccer practice, and is supposed to be working on birthdays and some holidays. But, oddly enough, birthdays come the same time each year, as do anniversaries. At the beginning of the year, take vacation if you are that concerned about it. Good grade dinners do not have to be done immediately. You say “Oh, good job honey, lets call dad and see what time we can go out Friday night. You get to pick where!” Not only am I trying to juggle a regular life with his crazy work schedule, I’m trying to juggle a family life, when 2 members of our family our gone every other weekend. We’ve moved entire holidays before. I think Easter was 2 weeks early this year. And you know who cared? Nobody. Independence Day was kept on the right day this year, but, for everyone to get to be there and make the kids happy, my new husband and I invited my ex husband and the woman he left me for. But, the important thing to my husband and I was that him, the boys and I got to spend the day together. What was important to the kids was that their 4 “parents” got to be there, along with their pseudo-step sisters. What was important for my ex was to see the kids. Nobody had to “miss their life”.
The options are not miss your life or quit your job. The solution is to think outside the box. I realize, I have it easier than many people. If I caller my parents right now and said “Please ignore my birthday, we’ve moved it two weeks forward”, they would and they would be understanding about it. But, my kids are pretty happy about the fact they get three birthdays a year. One little one, on their actual birthday, lunch with mommy, a little present, maybe cake at grandma’s. Then a big birthday when Aussie gets home from work. Then one with their dad.
And, like I said, movies where they romanticize this I hate as well. You know the ones, his alarm goes off, and she rolls over to hold him, he tries to pry himself away, saying he has a flight to catch, and she pouts. He kisses her, and then cut to the scene 3 hours later, where they are still in bed and he has to rearrange his flights. It doesn’t work like that. Yes, I want to pout when he has to leave on Monday morning, but, there are consequences for him when he tries to put a flight he never took on his expense report. There are consequences for missing that 8am Tuesday morning meeting because you missed your 8am Monday morning flight.
I think having priorities is good. I think your family should come first, but every time I hear that song I think to myself “good job, now you can make that celebration dinner, but how are you going to pay for it when you get fired?”