I’ve had the privilege of talking with a few PW’s about their window view of what it’s like being married to a pilot. I’m calling them “Coffee in the Air” and it’s a series I hope to share at least once a month with you and that you hear from different PW’s on how they navigate this crazy, sometimes turbulence yet, wonderful, life we live.
For my first chat, I had the fun opportunity to visit with my friend, Lisa North who I met a few years ago when Jeff and I were in the beginning stages of moving back to Texas. As soon as we met, Lisa and I connected as if we’d known each other all our lives.
So let me tell you a little bit about this amazing lady. Lisa lives in Dallas with her husband, Jacob, and their 14-year-old daughter, Sarah. For over five years, Lisa has been a Real Estate agent, handling residential and commercial properties”, as well as dabble a little in investment properties. Lisa is also the Cheif Operating Officer of the North Household, and she represents her title with honor!
A dose of southern charm and Texas strong, Lisa is a woman full of love, strength and a heart full of passion for God! So listen in as Lisa, and I discuss the ever-changing flight plan of a Pilot Wife.
As we were catching up and talking about our husbands and flying, Lisa shared that her family is in a different season right now with Jacob’s job. A few years ago, he flew over to “the other side” and now works at the SWA Headquarters in the Communications department. “I miss him flying…just the other day I said, ‘I hope you fly soon!’ You get used to your husband gone for three to four days at a time; I needed me time!”
I had to laugh (and could relate) when Lisa told me, after sipping her coffee, that when he starts to get on her nerves he leaves and when she starts to miss him he comes back. I’m sure you could relate! I know I can!
When I asked Lisa what she enjoyed about having Jacob take-off for a few days, she cheerfully stated,”I have complete control over the remote. I don’t’ have to cook dinner. I have time where it’s not distracted.”
With Jacob working at Headquarters he doesn’t fly as much — he only flies once a month to stay current. “Right now it’s been three to four months since he last flew. He’s been home every night,” Lisa says. One of the most important things about having her husband home every night is that he is there when their daughter has a special event or birthday. Lisa opened up and said, “That’s something not to take for granted. He doesn’t fly as much, and that’s okay.”
So what does Lisa say is her biggest struggle after all these years? As long as she and husband have been married, Jacob has worked in the office more than flown combined. “I still experience those PW’s challenges of trying to do it all. I feel everybody needs me and I’m running around crazy! The most significant challenge for me is balancing.” Can I get an Amen? I can totally understand that!
Lisa continued to open up to me about another challenge she goes through which is maintaining and developing friendships. “Friends are essential in my life. “Over the years, I’ve realized that friends change throughout our seasons of life. Right now I’m in a season where I’m don’t have a close-knit group. I’m 47 and friendships are harder,” she tells me after taking her last sip of coffee. Lisa has two best friends that live in Georgia and when they reconnect it’s like as if they had just spoken the day before. Those type of friendships are worth more gold!
I asked Lisa what advice she would give to other PW ’s, and I have to say I will fly away with some of her suggestions:
1. Try not to beat yourself up feeling as if you have to do it all yourself. It gets better cause you to learn to adapt to each season. You find a new way to cope!
2. Communicate constantly. Keep it open at all times, especially when he is home.
3. Cling to the Word, or find a devotional, that you read to get through those challenging times as you are navigating your way through family and raising children.
4. Learn the art of adjusting. Especially in areas of raising kids. We must learn to grow with the changes and roll with those unexpected flight plans of life.
As I was talking with Lisa, she said something that was so profound it has stuck with me ever since, “Just remember it does get better cause you get better dealing with it” I don’t’ know about you, but that is excellent advice!
As we started to fly into our final descent, I had to ask what sort of things she enjoys when she’s not selling properties, maneuvering teenage life, or sharing the remote with her hubby. Surprisingly, we discovered we both like shopping, taking walks, the chance to read in solitude with a nice warm cup of coffee —and hanging on a wing and prayer raising a teenager!
Lisa loves her coffee! She almost made me spit out my last sip of coffee when she told me that she loves going to Starbucks with her coffee and stare aimlessly at her laptop and do mindless thinking. What PW wouldn’t want to do that?
When our “Coffee in the Air” time landed, Lisa and I said our goodbyes promising not to let so much time go by without taking again. I’m sure we could have kept on talking. But we both had responsibilities that require our attention and love. Until next time!
Love to know what connected with you in our conservation.
What kind of future “Coffee in the Air” chats would like to know more about it?
Take-off and Landings Always, Tiffany