Happy Monday, friends! I hope everyone had a fantastic weekend. I don't know about you, but my weekend seemed short as a mother! Short like this mother, anyway - I'm 5'4", which I guess isn't really that short, but it sure seems that way when Jason or Justin put something on the top shelf in our kitchen and I have to climb onto the counter to get it!
Before I jump into the topic at hand, I thought it would be fun to do a quick weekend check-in. Jason was working this weekend, which means we ended up having a pretty low-key weekend, which was nice after having a pretty crazy past 3-4 weeks.
First things first, I was not a hypocritical bastard on Friday!! I actually ended up doing my workout Friday around 7:30 after putting Jules to bed.
*virtual high-five with myself!*
That filtered-to-all-hell-post-workout-glow though #sohot
I'd also like to share my pre-workout snack from Friday with you guys, since I'm sure you've noticed that I'm a pretty big health freak...
Yes, that is Cap'n Crunch with Crunch Berries cereal. This crap is filled with all of the artificial coloring and flavoring, and I'm pretty sure there are even trace amounts of trans fat in there. Still, I love having a small bowl of cereal before a workout and Friday's workout was a leg workout so I knew the sugar would help me have an awesome workout.
It gave me heartburn, so I don't recommend Cap'n Crunch pre-workout.
Saturday morning Jules and I woke up bright and early for a run, but had to take the dog for a walk first. Our dog is a 7 pound Shihtzu/Maltese (Shitese? Maltshit? Not sure what the designer dog name for him is...). Jules loves walking Jax and while he's not a huge fan, he tolerates it.
Jax is the perfect sized dog for her and he never pulls her or knocks her over. He's a really good boy when he's not being a jerk.
Now if only Jules would help me pick up his crap too.
After walking Jax we went on a 3.5 mile run and then kept it pretty easy the rest of the day before going to Jason's aunt and uncle's house for dinner (I forgot to take pictures of the food, but trust me when I say it was delicious) #worstbloggerever
We had nothing planned on Sunday (WOOHOO!) so Justin, Jules and I got up early to go to the grocery store, making a quick stop at the park for some swinging beforehand. Speaking of grocery stores, does anyone else go through phases with the stores they go to? Right now I'm on a pretty serious Trader Joe's kick, which is fine because I love Trader Joe's and they have awesome food. A few weeks ago I was hitting up Aldi's on the regular and before that it was Lucky's. I always go to Walmart for the bulk of our shopping, but hit up these other stores for meat and the random cool crap they have because I have a snack addiction and need all the chips.
This brings me to the subject at hand, which is being married to the law.
First off, if you had told me 20 years ago that I would be married to a cop, I would laugh in your face and walk off shaking my head. Shoot, if you'd told me 5 years ago that I'd be married to a cop I would have laughed at you. I'm a bit of a rule breaker and cops terrify me.
But then you fall in love with someone and get married and that person just happens to want to be in law enforcement and now look at me, I'm the wife of a law enforcement officer.
He looks smoking hot in uniform, btw.
We are only in our first year of this career change, but I can tell you that it's been a huge learning curve for all of us as a family. Working full-time with a teenager and a baby certainly don't help (although I'm sure it's just as crazy for SAHM's, just a different crazy). That being said, here are the tips that are keeping us afloat-ish.
One of the things I learned almost immediately is that you have to be flexible. Jason works the night shift and his schedule is different every week. He's supposed to get off of work around 6, but sometimes doesn't get off until 8 or later, depending on what happened while he was on shift. When he does come home on time, he can help me get the baby ready for daycare and get out the door to go to my job but I can't rely on that happening since we never know what his shift will bring.
Additionally, Jason has worked almost every holiday in the past year except for Christmas. We celebrated Thanksgiving the Saturday after the actual holiday and I got crunk while playing Guitar Hero with my kids for New Years Eve. Jason worked both Justin's and my birthday, but we made a point to celebrate both on a different day. You can't get stuck on the date itself - you have to be flexible and celebrate the day, not the date.
Have a schedule.
I really enjoy being spontaneous sometimes, but with Jason's schedule we really can't do that anymore. Almost everything is scheduled based on whether he's working or not. Our weekend plans and vacations have to be more thought out than they've ever been, and our daily routine has to be scheduled almost to the hour in order for things to work. We even have a shared family calendar on Google that we are all able to access and change, so we can keep track of shifts, extra duty, appointments, dates, etc.
To make things a bit easier I always go to the grocery store one morning of the weekend to get everything we need so I don't have to make any stops during the work week, and I plan all of our meals for the week prior to going so we get exactly what we need. I know that I have to be awake and out of bed by 5:20am (preferably by 5, but I'm a snoozer) in order to get my workout in before work. I know that I won't be able to do my workout after work, so getting it done in the morning is key.
That being said:
Make time for yourself
Jason works long hours and sometimes picks up part time work on his days off, meaning he's not home anywhere near as much as he used to be. This means a lot of the daily activities to keep the house up and running fall on my shoulders, which can be a huge responsibility sometimes. In order to keep my sanity I have to take time for myself. This includes my workouts in the morning, but I also try to take time a few nights a week to sit down and veg out on the couch for at least an hour after putting the baby down for the night. I also make it a point to take time to paint my nails once a week, since this makes me feel like a lady...
Let it go (you're singing it now, aren't you?)
This applies to so many facets of our life. Jason and I both like certain things in the house to be clean, but different things (he hates clutter and I leave clutter all over my side of the bed/night stand, but I hate clutter on the kitchen counter and loathe dirty floors and toilets). We have both learned to just let things go when it comes to the house being spotless all the time. We clean when we can and when we can't, we can't.
This also applies to fighting. Jason and I get along 95% of the time, but just like anyone else we do fight sometimes. However I never know for sure that he will come back from his shift when he leaves for work - that's the reality of the gig. So when he leaves we always make it a point to kiss and say I love you and in doing this, we tend to get over whatever we were upset about sooner.
Make time for each other (we're still working on this)
One of my goals for 2017 was for Jason and I to have a date night once a month. I know we never made it out in January, but we went out a couple of times in February so I think we're on track to average a date a month so far this year. We've both acknowledged that this is something we need to make a bigger priority though. When we don't make time for each other, we start to nitpick and argue with each other more and that leads to insecurities and issues that probably don't even really exist. With all of life happening it can be really hard to find time, but once the kids are out of the house and we've retired we will need to be best friends and it's imperative we still like each other in order to do that!
Enjoy the time you do have together (put the phone down)
This is something I've gotten really crazy about myself and after nagging Jason enough, he's started to see the importance as well. I make it a point to put my phone down and away when we're spending time together, both as a couple and as a family. I may even have my phone more than he does now since I'm always trying to remember to take blog pictures (and failing 50% of the time, SORRY!). That being said, I try to snap a few pictures and then I put my phone away, since I want to remember the experience of what we're doing, not the pictures of the experience. I even force my teenage son to give me his phone when we are all hanging out so he gets in the habit of being present.
If you need it, get help.
They say the divorce rate among law enforcement officers is higher than the average population, and I can definitely see how it's more difficult being married to the law than a regular citizen. However Jason and I both agree that we're in this for life and will fight for our marriage as hard as we need to, including going to counseling when/if we feel it's needed. Don't be ashamed to get help!
(don't judge my amazing outfit in these pics - aka, don't be jealous of how awesome it is)
Be each others #1 supporter
I think this is important in all marriages, but especially important in ours. Jason knows that I support him in his career and that I want him to be happy and successful. Even more, he knows I believe in him 100% - he can truly be/do whatever he wants and I am proud of him for doing such a difficult job. And I know that he appreciates all of my contributions as a wife/mom/boss lady and he makes it a point to tell me he appreciates me/what I do on a regular basis.
I remember when Jason first told me he wanted to go into law enforcement on a city/county level and I went online to look for some resources and experiences and all I could find were people griping and divorce statistics - SCARY! I hope this post is able to help someone out who's finds themself in the same boat as I did. I'll probably update this as I learn more and we get better
That wraps things up for me today. I hope you all have a wonderful week!