There comes a moment where you officially become an oilfield wife. I can’t tell you exactly when or where this happens because the process is different for everyone. In that moment you will stop and realize just how amazing you are and strong you have become. Give yourself a high-five and keep on trucking. Here are a few ways to tell when you’ve been initiated as an oilfield wife:
- You do things differently. You find yourself doing little things differently without realizing it. You park your car at the gym and find yourself backing into the spot. I’m not sure when I started doing this, but I did without thinking. Everyone backs into spots on location for a quick exit should things head south. Apparently, now I do this as well.
- You use oilfield terms or slang in conversation. Downhole. Pressuring up the backside. Nipple up. The sexual innuendos just write themselves you guys. In addition to all the dirty talk, Oilman works in South Texas where we’ve picked up some Spanglish along the way. Some are curse words that don’t need to be repeated, but I do anyway. I’m a lady that way.
- You’ve sailed through a hitch. In the beginning the thought of not seeing your significant other for a week, two weeks, twenty days, thirty days, or sixty, seems like the impossible. One day you look up and realize your man has been gone for three weeks and you haven’t cried at all. You are a little bit surprised as it seemed to go by quickly and somewhat easily. This is cyclical. Some hitches fly by and you love those. Other hitches feel like the longest period of time apart EVER.
- Your inner superwoman peaks through. At some point you do something you never realized you could do. The result is a feeling of empowerment. Your big shiny “S” for superwoman starts to show. Maybe you hire, fire, and pay contractors on a home renovation. You kill a snake, a centipede, or scorpion the size of an SUV. Oilfield wives can’t wait for days off for a scorpion to be annihilated. Maybe you buy and sell a house via power of attorney. You get a car towed and repaired. You run your household with style and grace. For some real oilfield wives, they reach such a high level of superwoman that whenever a task needs to be done, their man says, “whatever you think honey, I trust your judgment”. Oilfield wife status: nailing it.
- Weird things become normal. Oilman spent time working near Lake Zapata where drug runners and the Mexican drug cartel are a valid concern. One early morning he saw what appeared to be drug runners. The reaction he got from ranch security after the sighting only solidified his assumption. Afterwards my “normal” conversations with him before work involved questions about him carrying a stun gun and a pistol loaded with hollow points. While my friends are living the normal life in suburbia, my husband is sending me pictures of a crack pipe someone tried to hide on location. This is our life.
- You have your “he’s coming home routine” down pat. He’s coming home in 48 hours. Ladies, it’s time to get busy. We all have our own routine that involves a lot cleaning and laundry. There is personal grooming that may include shaving the legs, waxing the ‘stache, and tweezing the brows. Visiting the grocery store is a must so your oilman doesn’t come and proclaim, “It’s like a fat camp in here, there is NOTHING to eat!” Hide those granny panties and dust off the curling iron, it’s time to look pretty.
My fellow wives and girlfriends, stop for a minute. Take a breath. Pat yourself on the back. Our husbands are able to do their job better knowing everything is taken care of at home. We solve problems, stand strong, and persevere. This is simply how oilfield wives roll. Welcome to the club.