When I was a little girl, I, like many other little girls, thought about what it would be like to be married and have kids. I always pictured myself with a husband, kids. Husband would go to work, I would too (wanted to be a teacher when I was little – that never happened…) and we all sit around at the dinner table at the end of every day talking about what we did. Well, I did get married and have kids – but my family life didn’t exactly turn out that way. Instead of gathering around at the end of the day to talk about our day, we usually have to pick up a phone and catch up that way. My husband doesn’t have a “normal” 9-5 job, he’s an audio engineer who’s job entails lots of travel for him. Yup – he’s a “roadie”.
Simon’s always been on the road, from when I first met him (he was working for one of the bands I was dealing with). So – it wasn’t anything new to me. When we decided to have a kid we agreed he’d ease up on the touring a bit, and I’d keep working. So – we did a “Mr. Mom” arrangement for a bit. Then, when I decided I wanted to spend more time with my little girl – he went back into the rat race of touring. Wasn’t bad at first, couple of days here and there. And then – High School Musical hit the road, taking him with it. At first we thought it would only be for a few weeks, then it turned into several months. And after that, came Hannah Montana, Cheetah Girls, and several other tours in between those. He could have turned down the tours, but our daughter was so into all of it – how could he say no. Mianna definitely got benefits from his touring. There’s not many kids that can say Miley Cyrus and the Jonas Brothers sang happy birthday to them on their birthday! Me, I just got lots of exercise chasing our son around the show arenas. 2 year olds are really not at all interested in meeting celebrities.
So while all of this sounds like oh so much fun (which it is), it’s also tough when he’s on the road. It’s hard on me, but it’s hardest on my kids, especially my daughter. I have to say, she’s been handling this so well since he’s been doing it. She has her meltdowns every now and then – but hey, she’s an 8 year old girl who loves her daddy more than anything. The toughest thing for me when he’s away is keeping life as normal as possible for them, all the while constantly reminding them how much their dad loves them and misses them. He and I make sure they talk to him several times a day – always in the morning and always at night, at the very least. He’s mentioned constantly throughout the day, and I really believe that helps keep his presence in the home when he’s away. I’m always nervous that when he comes home, or calls, they’ll turn away from him. But – when he walks through the door it’s like Santa just came in with armloads of presents. It’s a good 10 minutes before they let him go. And, while it’s hard on us – it’s just as hard on him. Every time he misses a milestone (first tooth falling out, learning how to ride a bike, first day of school), it breaks his heart. When my son was 10 months old – he spent a whole day with him trying to make him walk so he would be there for his first steps. It worked, Jordan took his first few steps after several hours of this exercise. Ironically, he didn’t do it again until a month later. Think he may have realized how tiring this walking thing is. Point is – it’s hard on everyone!
Being married to a road crew member (they don’t particularly love the term “roadie” these days) has its ups and downs. It’s sort of like being married to a rock star without all the fame and fortune and drama that comes along with it. But – he’s an amazing man and an absolutely wonderful father to our kids. I wouldn’t trade our life for the world!
Michelle is a Project Manager for One2One Network