My name is Kelly and I am a trucker’s wife. I stay at home with our three children and am the Web master for a Web site for trucker’s wives.
When Truck News asked me to write a column for them, I was honoured and so excited! I am hoping to use this column in the coming months, as a means to communicate with other trucker wives and girlfriends on issues that affect our lives. I would love to hear from you.
Please feel free to e-mail me at the address provided below (or via the link at www.trucknews.com) with any questions you have or issues that you may like to see covered in this column.
I’ll start this month with an issue that seems to be prevalent with most trucker wives I have spoken with: “How do I deal with being alone while he is on the road?”
Your trucker just walked out the door on his next road trip. You lean against the door, close your eyes and let out a sigh.
You are going to miss him so much and it seems like such a long time until he’ll walk back through that door again.
When my husband went on the road the first time, I cried myself to sleep for the first few nights. The evenings were so long, the children weren’t being very co-operative at bedtime and I began to feel sorry for myself. “How am I going to get through this?”
The answer isn’t the same for everyone and there is no “one thing” that makes it all better.
The more I speak with other trucker wives, the more I come to realize that there are a few basic things that we need to focus on to keep our lives running smoothly.
It can be a lonely life, if that’s what we make of it.
So much depends on us to do the best we can, with what we have.
It isn’t easy, but a positive attitude is crucial. Remember that you have a wonderful man who is out on the road, working hard to bring home a paycheck, and that he too, misses you.
Come up with a positive thought and write it down, stick it on the fridge where you can see it when you are feeling down.
It can be a quote, something your trucker said to you or any type of positive affirmation as to why he is on the road in the first place.
Speak to other trucker wives if you can, being in touch with women who are in the same situation can be quite therapeutic.
Having a support system is wonderful for those times when you are feeling down and need someone to talk to.
Keeping busy can help. Go out for coffee or a movie once in a while with a friend or two. Enroll your children in swimming classes or skating lessons and go along with them.
Join a gym, volunteer, take up a hobby or maybe even go back to school if you can.
Don’t feel bad if you need to have a good cry.
Flop down on the bed, grab his pillow and let it out. Then get up, take a long bubble bath, make a nice cup of tea, get a good book and settle into your favourite chair for a little relaxation.
It’s not healthy to deny how we feel, so if you are missing him, by all means miss him, just don’t make it the focus of your day to day life.
Keep in touch with your trucker while he is on the road. Just hearing his voice over the phone can be wonderful, or with today’s technology, e-mail, Web cams and voice conference are even possible with a laptop and an Internet connection.
Be sure to make the home time meaningful.
Your trucker will most likely be tired when he gets home, maybe even a little cranky.
Give him some space and try not to overwhelm him with all he has missed in the first five minutes.
I have found that asking about his trip and things that happened while he was on the road helps him to wind down and to get a conversation going.
Do things with him when you can, go on family outings or even get a babysitter and go out on a date.
The one thing that I have learned from other experienced trucker wives, is that time does make things easier.
In the beginning, it may seem desperately hopeless, but time moves forward and one day soon, you will look back and see how far you have come.
Keep yourself on the right track and in a healthy frame of mind. When your trucker is far from home, that doesn’t mean that your hearts aren’t close.
– Kelly Livingstone is the editor of ATruckersWife.com, a Web site dedicated to truckers’ wives and what’s important to them. You can e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or you can send your questions and comments via snail mail to: Letters, Truck News, 12 Concorde Place, Suite 800, Toronto, Ont. M3C 4J2