Railroad Wife Life

My husband works for the railroad. This in turn has made me a railroad wife. I will tell you that this journey that we have started on since Don has been working on the railroad has been a tough one. The worst part is that people really do not understand what it is like to live with a railroader. At first for us it wasn’t so bad, even though he was working super far away from home for a couple of months. Then he was laid off for a couple months. Now that we are a couple years into this lifestyle I am finally getting it how crazy and hectic our lives and schedules can be. Sometimes he works really far away and we only see him on weekends. Sometimes those weekends become mandatory work weekends so we don’t see him at all. Sometimes he gets called in when there is a derailment to help fix the track and that can even turn into a 12+ hour ordeal. However, the pay is amazing, the benefits are good, and now Don loves his job (especially being a third generation railroader in his family.)

I will say that I am almost relearning how to be super independent for myself. Since Don and I have been together for almost 12 years now we had gotten pretty comfortable seeing each other all the time. However now a lot of times I do feel like a single mom since he is working a lot and sometimes has to work weekends so we really don’t see him for a couple weeks at a time. It really does take a strong woman to live this kind of lifestyle. It has helped that I have recently joined a couple Facebook groups with other railroad wives since they all know how hard it can be sometimes. I think the worst part is that you really can’t talk to anyone about it because they just try to come up with solutions to help you since they do not really understand this life.

At this point in time we are also always worried about him getting laid off and not being able to bid another position since he doesn’t not have enough seniority to get some of the positions. I will say we have been really luck this year and he has been working the whole year. Even though we only see him on weekends unless he is working closer to home. Ray, however, is at an age where he is starting to realize that daddy is only home a couple days and then he leaves again. As a mom that is hard to deal with especially since I don’t like him leaving either. But I am learning that I have to push down how I really feel about it so that Ray does not learn to resent his dad for working and giving us a better life. We have already been able to let me quit my job and be a stay at home mom. We have been able to spend most weekends together which we never did when we both worked retail. Ray and I even go and see Don at least once every month when he is on the road which for Ray seems like a fun little vacation. It is not ideal but it works for us.

I am super glad that Don has found a job that he loves to do. I know that it is hard now but the longer we stick this out the better it will get and hopefully he will be able to work closer to home more often. But until we will stand behind him through it all and make him know that we are doing just fine and will see him again when he comes home. Distance does make the heart grow fonder even if, in the moment, it doesn’t seem that way.

Something To Think About

“You can’t
change your
life by doing
the same things
every day.”
~Cara Alwill Leyba

Just the other day I finally got my Style Your Mind workbook written by Cara Alwill Leyba. This was the first quote in the book and it is crazy how much I have resonated with it. Because in reality unless you change something that you are doing or have been doing for a long time nothing in your life will be any different. You can wish and wish that things will be different or better but unless you put in some of the work nothing is going to change. It all really depends on you and how much you want something.

The past couple of years I have done a lot of studying about The Secret and the power of your mind. I know a lot of people think that it just seems stupid to just sit and think about all of the things that you want in life and hope that the universe will bring them to you and that everything in your life will be much better. Well, only part of that is true. You have to get clear about what you want. You have to train your mind to stop complaining all the time and seeing all of the negative around you all the time. Now, I’m not saying that having a bad day or feeling some negative feelings are bad, it is just when you are so focused on those negative feelings every day that they seem to take over every area of your life. You have to manage those thoughts and manage your decisions about things. Then really start to work hard for what you want.

I decided to buy the book Stye Your Mind because recently I have felt stuck. Just not knowing where to turn. I am a planner and I like to have goals that I can set and work toward. However, I have never been so undecided about which way I want my life to go. I think that I am finally at a point in my life where I have free range to kind of do what ever I really want. Before I finished high school then went to college which was what everyone was doing. Then I got a job (that I didn’t like) in order to pay my bills and my student loans. So, really, everything that I have done before this were things that I had to do and not necessarily things that I wanted to do in order to change my life.

Now that I am staying at home to raise our son I have time to think about what I would like to try and do with my life. Even if it just starts out as something on the side for now until he is in school. However, there are so many different things that interest me that it is hard to set specific goals to try and achieve something. Then you throw into the mix trying to balance what I want with being a mom and I am at a loss as to which way to go.

I have only started this workbook, however, I am finding it to be very unique and very much something that I need in my life right now. I am a firm believer that I know what I need to do it is just a matter of almost talking it out and finding my own answer within me. Cara is a master life coach and bestselling author. I started following her through her blog The Champagne Diet and now I follow her on social media and listen to her podcasts. This workbook that she has created is full of questions. Questions that make you think about the different areas of your life and it has definitely made me see things differently already. I am realizing different things that I have been doing that have been blocking me from what I really want. I have realized different things about my life and what I thought I really wanted has kind of changed a bit.

I am excited to finish this workbook and to see what other discoveries and aha moments I have. If you are someone like me that has been to talk with a therapist and they just don’t seem to be the right thing to help you figure out stuff in your life, I recommend trying out this book and seeing if you can make some discoveries as well!