'Quality time' is any time we're together
Sarah Long arrived in Australia from the UK in early 2010 and met her Mr Miner soon after. They're based in Sydney and he does drive-in, drive-out (DIDO) to country NSW. Sarah came out to Oz as part of a six-month backpacking trip around the world, and never went home!
I've said it before and I'll say it again: we are really lucky to have a 7:7 roster.
We get to split our time 50:50, the time apart isn't too long and the breaks don’t get boring. We love it and generally it really works for us, but sometimes I do wonder whether seven days is long enough to spend 'quality time' together.
When Mr Miner is away, I see other couples everywhere I go, walking hand in hand on the beach, going for coffee together, sitting in restaurants laughing and joking together, or just at the supermarket generally doing smug couple things that make me feel like I am missing out.
So we try to make sure we have one date night a month. A time to put on a nice dress (usually me) and treat each other (usually him) with no distractions like phones and TVs etc, just the two of us. However, sometimes this is easier said than done. Take his last break home as an example:
Thursday night is Mr Miner’s first day back and he is always understandably a bit tired after a seven-hour drive. We know from experience that trying to organise anything for that night will lead to frustration and arguments. Plus getting dressed and putting clothes on is usually the last thing on our minds! So we agree on Friday as date night.
But Sydney traffic has other plans and I sit in traffic getting crankier by the minute at the thought of having to go home and find something to wear that doesn’t require ironing and is clean, have a shower and do my hair.
Just as I am considering whether I can just spray the dress I wore last weekend and hang it in the shower for the creases to drop out and not wash my hair to save time, I get a text from Mr Miner to say "Shall I just order pizza?" and my heart swells with gratitude. Yay.
"Let’s do something tomorrow night," I say as we settle in for the night with pizza, wine and a movie. "Definitely," he says, "except isn't it your friend’s wedding tomorrow night?" Damn it, he’s right!
"Sunday?" he asks. "Monday?" I counter.
I like my Sunday nights to be relaxed and easy so that I can be ready for work on Monday morning. Plus I really don’t want to miss My Kitchen Rules to see if Drasko and Bianca are going out – they’re getting way too big for their boots!
So we agree on Monday. Definitely Monday! We’ll head to our favourite restaurant and have a couple of drinks and a nice meal. Monday it is.
That is until I get to work on Monday and look at my calendar and remember that I have to have a teleconference call with our US office that evening and it’s the only convenient time we could arrange. I text Mr Miner to tell him the bad news. "Ooh does that mean I can watch the Manly game?" he replies, obviously distraught by the cancellation of date night.
Tuesday night I have Book Club (ironically started as something to distract me when he’s away at work) and Wednesday he’s back to work. So that’s it, another month without date night.
"We’ll definitely go on a date next break," he says as I kiss him goodbye. "Definitely," he says and I smile, because although we might, we probably won’t, but does it really matter?
We had pizza and wine and watched movies, went to a wedding and got dressed up and danced with our friends, and he got to watch his beloved football while I didn’t have to.
To me that’s quality time well spent. And I didn’t have to go to the supermarket or pretend to like coffee!
Our Miner's Girl now has her own website: check out her blog here at http://minersgirl.com/
And here's lots more from Sarah on Mining Family Matters:
- Who's more tired? Who cares – just help me out!
- More sex, less nagging? Sure, I'm happy to try that...
- When opposites attract
- Life lessons from a Wonder Woman who knew what was important
- It’s not all about the money!
- Shaved legs, painted nails and sexy PJs: it's fly-in day!
- Beating the loneliness blues when your partner works away
- Why I'm sick of 'cheating miner' stories
- Listen up boys and I'll tell you the secret to the first-night-home loving
- Things that go bump in the night
- FIFO does get easier – here’s why!
- 2014 – my year of positivity
- Burns survivor Turia Pitt on staying strong, the love of family and the importance of goals
- Work hard, smile and join in - how my parents prepared me for life
- Three-word phrases for simple communication
- The guilty pleasures of a woman left alone
- Help - I've started to nag my miner about marriage
- Goodbye is always the hardest word
- Don't be lonely when your miner's away. Enjoy precious 'me time' instead
- How to handle food intolerances when you work FIFO
- Lost that loving feeling? Go back to where it all began
- The great escape: holidaying out of a relationship rut
- Time for a DIDO relationship spring clean
- Reliable, flexible, super-organised ... 10 reasons why mining wives/partners ROCK
- How to make friends and really irritate them
- Relationship rules for DIDO DINKS
- Curse of a DIDO girlfriend: the fear of missing out
- After two years, a DIDO relationship is still love on steroids
- Body clocks and DIDO rosters: a rather stressful combination
- How anxiety counselling changed my life and prepared me for Mr Miner
- Making new friends - an essential tool in mining life
- Here's why I don't talk to Mr Miner while he's away at the mine site
- Sex confessions of a DIDO miner's girlfriend
- Roses are red and DIDO rosters make me blue
- Mixed emotions and my first mining Christmas
- All you need is trust
- How to make your own Prince Charming
- The guilty pleasure of 'man moaning' about my Mr Miner
- Down days and risotto
- How I met my miner
- Making your own life in a mining town
- So what's Orange really like?
If you've got a question for Sarah or would like to tell your own tale about mining life, we'd love to hear from you. Click here!