Having just worked through the Labor Day Holiday…my last one by the way…I feel a loss caused by this career I’ve chosen. I reflect on how it used to be…Sundays used to be family day and/or church day. When I was a teenager, I spent all of Sunday in church – Sunday morning church, Choir practice, Youth Group, Evening worship service…and because the teenagers couldn’t seem to get enough of each other, we then hit one of the local restaurants after evening church to do what teenagers do.
When my kids were young, Sundays were reserved for family day…very seldom did a Sunday pass without dinner at my folks or his folks house…sometimes both. There were weeks that I resented the expectation.
I worked as News Director at the local radio station during our first few years of marriage. The pay was embarrassing low and I was able to choose if I wanted to work Saturday or Sunday. It’s not like I got another day off during the week…those were the options and I was willing to work Saturdays because that was the expectation of the job and I thought I loved it!
Welcome to the world of 911 dispatch. The broad view is that every day of the year is the same – there are no weekends and there are no holidays. With the schedule adopted by dispatch years before I joined the family, we work 6 days on and 3 days off which allows us rotating days off and 1 1/2 weekends off a month. That 1/2 weekend could be a Saturday or a Sunday. I have loved this for purely selfish reasons. When my days are off during the week, I can play while everyone else is working. It’s a mind game. Holidays are mainly a day you get to work without all of the office and administrative hubbub going on. It’s always been a fair exchange. But I’ve lost what is really important. Sundays and holidays with the family. Traditions be damned mom has to work. As I count down the days to retirement, I question whether it has all been worth it….I hope I can remember this. I hope I remember to celebrate everyday of retirement as a special day.
Until next time…