Finally, a Phone Call From Sand Point. Ten Days Down…

One thing about me that bugs George to no end is my rather untimely way of getting to the bills. It wasn’t always this way; having a touch of OCD and understanding the importance of responsible finances, I always made sure I knew how much was in my accounts and each penny was accounted for. I also sent in my bills on time, for I didn’t want to put even the slightest dent in my good credit.

As the years have gone by, though, I’ve become increasingly slower and less interested in getting to the bills and balancing the household checkbook. (Never mind the business accounts; George doesn’t let me NEAR those!) I don’t know; I think it’s the limited amount of time I have to sit at my desk and open envelopes, review their contents, write checks, seal and stamp envelopes.

Having three children, including one infant, doesn’t leave one with much desk time. Oh, and when I do find time to sit at my desk, there are other things I’d rather do, like Facebook…and this blog…maybe a little Twitter thrown in for fun. Ha.

George has put as many bills as he can on autopay and when he’s home, he just takes over all the accounts to make sure everything is done on time. So when it is time for him to leave home, he gets a little nervous about leaving me in charge of the remaining bills.

“Please pay the bills on time while I’m gone,” he said before he left for this year’s blackcod and halibut season. “Please!”

George doesn’t ask too much of me, so I said I would definitely try to stay on top of it.

Valerie slept this morning for a bit, so I took the opportunity to get to those bills. When I opened the checkbook, I discovered a sticky note George left for me with instructions on which bills to pay and out of which checkbook. Lol! That’s my guy. Well, he needn’t worry; I managed to pay all the bills this morning and even balanced the checkbook. One month of bills down, two or three more to go.

Now that I’m truly the only parent on duty, I’ve started having ridiculous mom nightmares each night. Terrible dreams that don’t even make sense, like I can’t remember where to pick up my children or at what time. Or dreams in which I have a child with me one minute, and then I turn around and she’s gone.

I had one ludicrous nightmare already this week in which I’d become a loser mom who spent an entire day at the local casino, won $100 and was so excited that I lost all track of time and never made it back to town to pick up my children from school. Okay—now, I don’t even gamble (we work too hard for our money to throw it away!) and I obviously would never waste an entire day at a casino or forget about my children! For Pete’s sake.

These nightmares scare me because I am the exact opposite. I check on my children multiple times when they’re playing in our own backyard. I know exactly where they are, what they’re doing, and who they’re with at all times during the day. I get up and check on them several times during the night. And when I’m the sole parent on duty, I’m hyper vigilant. This is my subconscious rearing its ugly head while I’m asleep, and I don’t really appreciate it.

I finally got a chance to talk to G yesterday. I hadn’t heard from him in over ten days and was starting to worry a bit, but I abide by the saying that no news is good news. I didn’t know if he was going to start out in Southeast Alaska, the Gulf, or head all the way out west, so I just waited. Turns out he’s starting out west which takes a long time to get to, and he called me once they made it to Sand Point. He said the weather was good so they were going to get right out and get to it.

Here’s hoping they get on the fish quickly and wrap up that part of it sooner rather than later. Fishing out west is no fun; I’ll feel better once they move into the Gulf and then Southeast. It was good to hear his voice, though, and now maybe my subconscious will settle down a bit.

Comments

  1. Oh man, I can totally relate. I just got a notice that our gas was going to get shut off, but I don’t even remember getting the bill! I like to think that our brains are so busy multi-tasking as parents (and especially with babies), trying to stay on top of feeding and dressing and school and activities that we just subconsciously push out anything that doesn’t have to do with the immediate survival of our children. I call it “mom-nesia”. So don’t be hard on yourself!

    • You know what? I think you are EXACTLY right! I never thought about that but it certainly explains it. We do push out most anything that doesn’t have to do with the immediate survival of our children. It’s not that we don’t care about the other stuff, but in the midst of all the multi-tasking we do as solo moms and all the different tasks surrounding our children, if it isn’t immediate, it’s going to be put on the back burner.

      Sooo funny about the gas notice, too. I don’t remember seeing things, either. Just yesterday I was at school picking up Eva and noticed several mothers looking at new class pictures. “Uh, are those the class pictures?” I asked. “Was there an order form sent home for those?” Whoops!!

      I’ve also accidentally put a fishing CHECK directly into the recycling, which G miraculously caught before it was picked up. I can only imagine what he was thinking! I felt horrible about that until I heard from another fishing wife (who’s a teacher and mother of three) that she’d also once put a fishing check directly into recycling.

      We’ve got too much on our minds! Mom-nesia, indeed!

  2. Chris is sitting idle not fishing due to the 100% ice coverage over their crab grounds :( 19 weeks and counting……..The twins are going crazy. The only good thing is he has phone service so we can talk to him :)

    • Oh, no! Not good. I feel for you! I’ve already started wondering if I’ll be brave enough to fly with a 4 and 6-year-old and a baby should G get stuck like that due to weather. I’d go in a heartbeat if it was just the older kids and me…but the baby factor might make things a little too complicated to be worth it. But then…if he ends up sitting around for a week or longer, it would be hard to sit here as well. Any progress yet with the ice?

  3. HI I’m trying to find a support group, I’m not to good at the computer and navigating the web. I was wondering if this is jen’s page or is there other woman posting things? I have found a web page homecomming or something but it is under construction. I am very happy to see you girls communicating and telling your stories. Today I wondered is this all worth it, do women really make it through this stuff? I was a fisherman for 8 years and my daughter was on the boat untill my son was born I have never been the one on the beach and it hurts and it’s hard. I’m still trying to adjust to living on land. I see that your children are a bit older so you have made it far. I was wondering if you have any advice of were to go or if I can use this web sight to talk to others. Thanks for your time, thanks for your story.

    • Hi Mandy! I’m curious about what happened with the “under construction” result? That makes me a little nervous that something is going on somewhere. But aside from that, I was happy to get your message. This is my blog/website that I started over five years ago when I was at home with two babies and a husband gone fishing far from home year round.

      Even though I’d grown up in a fishing family, fished, and done a bit of writing for National Fisherman mag, being a stay-at-home seasonally single mom was a whole different ball game. I looked around the web and there was nothing for fishing wives; in addition, my community does not have an official fishing wives group, such as Newport Fishing Wives. So…I decided to start this blog in the hope of connecting with other fishing wives. I love it when people like you leave comments because it means my plan is still working!

      Where are you located and does your husband fish nearby or is he gone for extended lengths? How old are your children? I bet you are sad and possibly even feeling left behind. It is not easy but you WILL make it through. As the months and years go by it gets easier and easier. I used to cry when I’d watch the boat and G leave; now I just give a wave, walk back up the dock, hop in the car and go home. I still feel sad, but with the kids now (they are 6, 4, and three months) I just am so focused on them and what’s coming next that I don’t allow myself time to be sad anymore…at least on the surface.

      Are you on Facebook? A couple other fishing wives and I started a Facebook group called Commercial Fishing Families & Friends. It’s open to everyone and not specific to fishing wives, but there are tons of wives on there and other people sympathetic to the commercial fishing industry and its families.

      You will make it! Believe me! I have gone through entire years where I have been totally depressed. Other times, I’ve felt angry and resentful. Then happy. Then hopeful. Then frustrated. All of your feelings will cycle through so just let them run their course. And communicate and connect with others in your position, just like you are!

      You may have seen Robin Blue’s blog, The Fishing Blues. She has been at home with two very young boys for several months now and she writes a great blog. Keep communicating! You aren’t alone! :)

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