Passing the Time

passing time

One thing every Real Oilfield Wife (ROW) has in common is dealing with the absence of our husbands when they are gone on their work hitch. Some women hate every minute of it, other’s enjoy having time to themselves, but no matter how we feel we all have to get through it. We all have to pass the time between hitches.

It’s not enough to survive your time alone, or even tolerate it. Of course it’s not going to be as nice as it is when the family is all together, but that’s no reason for it to be a miserable time either. Look for things that can be done alone, or that might even be more enjoyable alone, and try to work these into your routine while your Oil Man is away.

I have found it to be very helpful to have something to look forward to. I still prefer having my husband at home, but if I’m just miserable and suffering through every day that he’s gone, then life is going to be pure torture. Some women pass the time by volunteering or working. While I do volunteer at my kids’ school and at our church, with the ages of my kids and the fact we home school, I don’t have much time time for those types of activities during this season of life. I also don’t have time to go out with friends, or join a book club, or take a class – but what I have done is started doing a few simple things for myself (mostly just here at home) that give me something to look forward to and help pass the time in a fun way while my husband is gone…

1. Watching girly movies. After the kids are in bed is the only “me” time I get, and the only time I control the remote. This is my only chance to watch some other that my Hot Oil Man (HOM) would never watch. Curled up in bed watching a good flick can be something to look forward to after a long day – again, not as fun as being curled up next to your honey, but it can still be a way to pass the time. I would recommend making a list of all the movies you want to see and working your way through the list.
2. Reading. I don’t read much while my husband is home. We’re usually out having fun or just too busy, so we just don’t have much “down time”. So I’ve made the effort to read more while he’s gone. Again, it’s usually after the kids are asleep, or sometimes while they are working on some of the their schoolwork I might find the time to sneak in a few pages. I recently started “Gone with the Wind”. It’s been on my list forever…so why not now?
3. Pedicures/Massages. This only works out when my kids are at one of their extracurricular activities and I get some actual time to myself. It makes me feel good, it makes me look good, and it’s relaxing. Definitely a must. It doesn’t work out every hitch, but it should be done as often as possible.
4. Trying something new – I’ve started learning to play the guitar. Again, it’s something I’ve always wanted to do, and something I can do at home on my own time. It’s a lot of fun. Next I’m thinking crocheting or knitting!
5. Home projects – I love decorating. I need my HOM for the really big stuff , but I can rearrange furniture and even paint a room without him. With all the fun ways to re-purpose furniture there are, this is a good way to stay busy, have fun, and be productive all at the same time.
6. Shopping. (Of course.) Sometimes I go with my HOM, but not for clothes or other “fun”stuff. We might get groceries or look for a new appliance together, but none of I consider fun shopping which is clothes, make-up/perfume, kid’s clothes, shoes, and anything for the house (rugs, curtains, etc). These I’d prefer to do alone. It’s something I can look forward to. I wouldn’t want to waste the precious time I do get with my husband driving all over town looking for a new lamp, but it’s something I enjoy on my own.

These are a few things I can enjoy on my own my while my HOM is away. I hope my ideas will help you think of some of your own.

About jenna

Jenna has been an oilfield wife for over 12 years. Her Hot Oil Man husband started working in the oilfield a few months before they were married. The oilfield has lead them all the way from Northern CO to Alaska, where they've lived in the Matanuska Valley for 4 years. The family consists of their two children; a strong-willed daughter age 10, and a goofy son age 7. And of course what family would be complete without a couple of dogs and rabbits thrown in the mix. Jenna is a stay at home mom who doesn't “stay at home” much, and enjoys gardening, baking, reading, watching movies, four wheeling, hiking, fishing, and LOVES shopping. Since moving to the last frontier they have also started home schooling, which is another adventure all it’s own.


  1. Thank you very much for sharing your part. I got a really positive feel and plans on my future days now, like you we all got to get over our husband’s hitch and use those days for something better. In my early days i used to count down days for his arrival I found it very difficult. These days what I do is read books, do some exercises, help my parents, learn dancing as its one of my favourite thing to do and few days before my husband come, get prepared for it like A-Z. I always get some surprise gifts for him, learn new recipes arrange his clothes and all that he need. I just don’t wana waste even 5 minutes for works when he is with me. I appreciate your idea of learning guitar, infact you can play that for him too, can play his favorite songs as well.

  2. I also schedule massages and pedicures with friends while my husband is away! I get extra gym time, which is a huge bonus since I’m not in a rush to get home. I have 2 kids and 2 bulldogs that keep me busy, and I love to record my fav shows one dvr and watch them when he goes back to work (he does NOT like to watch Total Divas haha). I read through books at night, and run my tail off doing errand chores one time off. I agree with finding something to look forward to,it is so easy to fall into a negative woe-is-me state of mind if you don’t have positive happy influences in your life!

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