Tags - Popular | FAQ  

PrevPrev Go to previous topic
NextNext Go to next topic
Last Post 03/28/2007 2:00 AM by  catwoman
LONG NIGHTS - LONGER DAYS
 16 Replies
Sort:
You are not authorized to post a reply.
Author Messages
margar1
Member
Member
Posts:98


--
03/10/2007 9:45 PM
    Much has been stated about the trials and tribulations of life on the road while working a storm. We all know about the non- stop 18 hour days and the pressure with performing and delivering to maintain a significant income. While I do not know personally what my physical appearance is when I arrive home from a deployment my wife does. She has stated on more than one occasion that Look like something the cat dragged in. In not noticing my dreadful appearance I do notice hers. While I do see the happy faces of her and my three kids 8,7,and 3 I see her fatigue as well. There is another side to this industry and way of life .If you folks don,t mind I am going to let my wife follow up with a post with a bit of an angle some may not have considered. I am going to do my best to keep her statements brief however she is a writer so I may be in trouble.
    Mark S Garland
    Tags: On The Job
    catwoman
    Member
    Member
    Posts:47


    --
    03/11/2007 10:56 PM
    Mark, I can not imagine what it must be like for your wife when you are gone, with the little ones in tow. I think that people would love to hear her insight. I know that I would.
    jlombardo
    Member
    Member
    Posts:145


    --
    03/12/2007 9:41 AM
    Mark,
    You have another source of income.....sounds like you need to stay home.......Life is too short and tomorrow is promised to no one......

    If in fact I read the under tone of your post correctly, then you need not be on the road at this point in your life......you know it is true....

    Best regards,
    Joe L.
    margar1
    Member
    Member
    Posts:98


    --
    03/12/2007 1:56 PM

    Joe

     

    I appreciate the advice and it is true. It has been said many times that being on the road is no place to raise a family. I am not one of these guys that takes everything that comes down the pipe. I know that I am always making remarks on the forums about being broke and looking for a storm. The truth is that yes I do have another source of income. I also turn down many offers for deployment if they are not good for me and my family at the time.

    I have been blessed with a wonderful family and business. I also feel like working catastrophes is also a blessing. Being a part time Cat adjuster has given me the opportunity to supplement my income while doing something I love. There are things I have to be careful of when things start to get busy. My wife will be the first to say that driven and motivated is an understatement when the opportunity to make money is present.

    Priorities are something we all face every year. God and Family are at the top of my list but there are times when I have forgotten that.

    I am still waiting on the post from my wife. She keeps telling me not to rush her that she will post when ready. As I said she is a writer so I guess she is waiting for some type of inspiration. I have tried to explain to her that she does not have to be inspired to post on the forum. I told her to look back at many of my forum post  that I have made. It is obvious that neither inspiration or common sense was present at the time.

     

    COME ON CHELLE....... ( The clock is ticking )

     

    Mark S Garland
    Tom Toll
    Moderator & Life Member
    Senior Member
    Senior Member
    Posts:1865


    --
    03/12/2007 4:43 PM
    I am anxious for your wife to post her thoughts on this subject, Mark. Most of my catastrophe experience has been after my daughters (4) were raised and on their own. There was a time, however, when I had Toll Adjustment Co., Inc, that I was also unable to be at home every evening with my kids. My company specialized in aircraft accident investigatioin, commercial property and residential property. I had four adjuster's working with me, but I still had to make trips out of town in my Skylane to investigate complex accidents involving fatalities. This, sometimes caused me to have to spend the night at the point of investigation, sometimes, several nights. I did not like that, but it was part of the job to do the job accurately and completely. I worked in seven states away from my home base, so sometimes I had to fly rather long distances. My oldest daughter could help supervise the her younger sisters, but I did not want to place that responsibility completely on her, as I was a singe parent raising 4 girls part of the time, seven years to be exact.

    I was fortunate, in that, across the street my neighbor was a minister, his wife and two daughters. If I saw that I was unable to make it back safely, or could not make it back in one day, I could call and the ministers wife and she would take care of them. That was most fortunate for me and the girls. It was, however, very hard on them, as they saw how tired I was upon getting back for several days of intense investigation and flying back home. Some trips were well over a thousand miles from home, which required I check weather very accurately. I would not fly back in bad weather situations, as that is why I was investigating many losses. Pilots sometimes expect too much of themselves and push themselves into conditions not conducive to safe flying. Those types kept me busy.

    The girls, in later years, expounded that they wished I had not been gone that much, as they missed my fatherly advise and companionship. I had a very close relationship with the girls. They were never afraid to ask my anything about any subject. I would not recommend that a young parent ever get into catastrophe work for that very reason. A father is needed at home and not gone for months on end. It was bad enough for me to have been gone for three to four nights back then. I don't regret what I did then, but I would now.

    It is hard enough for Janice and I to be gone for months on end. We spent 15 months during 04 and 05 without going home. Fortunately we were able to stay with our daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter, so that made it much more pleasant. Things are not the same when you return home.
    Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.
    malvi
    Guest
    Guest
    Posts:38


    --
    03/13/2007 9:27 AM
    Wow Tom, thanks for sharing your personal experience with your daughters, many men believe a girl needs her mom and indeed she does, but in many areas of her life she needs her dad just as much, if not more. A lot of fathers do not realize just how important they are in a daughter's life. I know the closeness and respect my daughter and my husband (he is not her natural father but as she says he is her dad) have has had a direct impact on her ability to make decisions and on her self esteem. I love watching them interact. I did not have that type of relationship with my dad (different times), so I am very grateful that my daughter has it with Bob. Any man (or woman) wondering if a career is worth becoming an absentee parent needs to think long and hard.
    Thanks again for sharing
    Malvi
    margar1
    Member
    Member
    Posts:98


    --
    03/14/2007 7:57 PM

    Ok, this is Chelle, Mark's wife.  He is going without supper tonight just so that I can finally get around to replying to this message.  Let's see... where to begin?  When I married Mark he was an IronWorker.  He oftentimes worked long hours and sometimes weekends, but the job was fairily predictable.  Then a few years ago he went into business on his own.  His hours became less predictable since he was no longer an employee, but rather an employer.  However, he was able to set his own schedule and take vacations at his own discretion, which was really nice since we had small children. 

    When Mark decided to go into CAT adjusting I had mixed feelings.  The money seemed too good to be true.  I'll be honest... when the first checks started to come in I was amazed.  And hurricane Wilma enabled us to adopt our third child Wilson.  (And I wouldn't change that for the WORLD!)  However, each trip has chipped away at my sanity!  I mentally prepare for the trips well before Mark leaves.  Once he is gone I deal with tearful kids for the first couple of nights.  Then, we all settle into a routine "without daddy".  Usually we do pretty well until after a month or so and then the kids start asking questions.  That's when the fatigue of being mommy and daddy really starts to settle in.  I also am the "middle man" with my in-laws as they check in on their son, Mark frequently.  I'm soccer mom, disciplinarian, cook, plumber, nurse and counselor, ect.  

    Then, when Mark returns, all of a sudden, Mom "disappears" and Dad is the HERO because he has brought goodies.  I've catered to their every need and the kids are all over HIM.  Mark hates to discipline them right away because he's been gone so long (I understand that) but it makes it hard once the kids figure out they can go to him when I stand firm on a rule.  It takes at least a week or so to get back into a routine.  By THAT time Mark is on the computer looking for the next hurricane.  (Don't deny it Mark.)

    Don't get me wrong.  Mark is a great husband and an awesome father.  He LIVES for change and excitement.  I happen to enjoy stability and peacefulness.  Somehow we make it all come together.  I guess I'll end this with saying he is ONE LUCKY GUY to have such a tolerant wife!

    Love ya Mark....now let's go have some cheesecake for supper.    

    Dawn " Chelle " Garland

    Mark S Garland
    StormSupport
    Gold Member
    Member
    Member
    Posts:203


    --
    03/14/2007 10:12 PM

    Hi Chelle!

    Your thoughts from the "one left at home's" stand point are much like a military wife's point of view.  I grew up in a military family but by the time I came along my dad had a regular 7-4 type of job and was always home at night.  I have however watched my niece with her navy husband and 5 (yes 5) children suffer the 'deployment blues" and the struggles she goes through when "daddy" is gone for 6 months at a time. 

    I've watched her learn to be "mommy-daddy" during the times of absence, watched her learn to fix things around the house, service the vehicles, pitch a softball, kiss a boo-boo, cook supper, tuck the babies into bed and cry herself to sleep.  I've watched her wait for an email and seen the heartbreak on her face when it didn't come, watched her sit by the computer for hours waiting for hubby to get his 15 minutes on the computer on the ship so they can talk in instant message for 10 minutes.  I've seen how she has to go from the role of the wife, to the role of the head of the household, and back again when he comes home, and how it wears on her. 

    We do tend to be aware of the stresses of the adjuster on the road, the dangers, mentally and physically, but we don't talk much about the stresses of the ones that are left behind, so I'm glad you've brought things to light. 

    The military wives form support groups and get together and have picnics, cookouts, and other such events, trying to keep the "family" sense of things alive while the spouses are gone.  I know logistically it isn't feasible for the adjuster's spouses to be able to physically get together, but maybe a internet support group, even here on CADO for the spouses left behind would be a good idea. 

    Do the right thing, ALWAYS
    ~Meg~
    Medulus
    Moderator
    Veteran Member
    Veteran Member
    Posts:786


    --
    03/15/2007 11:32 AM
    "A wandering Aramean was my father" (Deuteronomy 26:5 the version I can't remember)


    I don't know if I would have done this when I was younger and my children were small. The long periods away from home would have been a deal breaker. This profession is not a good fit for someone helping to raise a family. It seems like you are making it work, and I salute you in that. I just hope you can keep it together long enough to go out on the road with Mark. Two makes it easier than one all the way around. Working these kind of hours when I was in the ministry was a big factor in my divorce. If I had also been away from home for months on end that just wouldn't have flown.

    I came into this business when my kids were teenagers and I had them only during the summers and holidays. Under those circumstances I got to spend lots of time with them by co-opting them into the family business. For a couple years I even went on staff and stayed in one place long enough to get my stepdaughter through high school. I have taken my wife with me on most of the assignments. The life of wandering gypsies suits us both.

    In many ways this is a business that cannot be done from home as well as it can be done from a remote location. Although we are mostly homeless, the rare occasions bring us home to Pennsylvania. Consequently, we find ourselves working from home at the moment. This is the first cat/branch assist assignment where I have ever worked from home base. We came home to take care of Jennifer's grandmother and aunt in January, and got an assignment filling in for an adjuster on medical leave. Then we got a foot and a half of ice and snow dropped on us. The fun began. This is every bit a cat assignment at this point and there are all "the cares of the world" crowding in all the time. There are in-laws and old friends dropping in regularly. Then there are various activities that normal people do in regular life. When we are strangers in a strange land, we can avoid normal life and find lots of time to close claims. When we are in normal daily existence, the distractions are endless. A few weeks after we arrived here, Jenn's 97 year old grandmother died. That meant people flew in from everywhere and there were about 20 extra people in the house at any given time for almost a week. On top of that I was asked to perform the funeral. Basically I got all the inspections done that week, but got a week behind in the paperwork. I can't ever remember being this far behind, even in the worst of storms. Then there is the issue of being in Scranton in the winter. This is really not where anyone should have to spend the winter. I got an assignment a month ago to investigate where a car ran over someone's lawn. It has been under ice and snow ever since. I can't even take a photo of it.

    Jennifer and I can't wait to hit the road again when this assignment is over. But it only works for us because we both go.

    What is bothering me, though, is why Mark isn't making dinner for you while you write the post? He doesn't know how to make his own hamburgers, mac and cheese, and open a bottle of beer?
    Steve Ebner CPCU AIC AMIM

    "With great power comes great responsibility." (Stanley Martin Lieber, Amazing Fantasy # 15 August 1962)
    Fishhead
    Guest
    Guest
    Posts:29


    --
    03/15/2007 2:15 PM
    Steve, I bet it is difficult doing this job from home.  After Rita, I was deployed to Miami for Wilma.  My wife told me I should try to get deployed somewhere in our area so that I could work Katrina claims instead of going to Miami.  I tried to explain to her how that would NOT be good.  She figured I could just work claims during the day and come home everynight.  I hope to one day have her work a storm or two with me.  She would be an awesome helper/assistant.  But until then, I guess she won't understand how impossible it would be to do this job from home with all the distractions.  I don't envy you having to do it now.
    Old fishermen never die, they just smell that way.
    Tom Rongstad
    Member
    Member
    Posts:76


    --
    03/15/2007 3:41 PM

    Working a storm from your home is most difficult; I did so in 1995, New Orleans flood. It was not a good storm. However expenses were less. 

    9 years of stormin' while my kids grew up was a major mistake in my life. I could have stayed home, made less and spent quality time with my family. Instead, I was gone many months at a time, sending the money home. When I returned, I had to make a new life within my family structure. They were accustomed to my absence, and had learned to live without my presence. It was almost a battle to regain the use my favorite chair.

    The kids are now gone and on their own, I now work daily claims in one territory and sleep with my wife every night. Life is good.

    If I had to do it all over again, with the knowledge I now possess, I would not chase the storms until the kids were grown and the wife could travel with me.

     

     

    margar1
    Member
    Member
    Posts:98


    --
    03/15/2007 4:14 PM
    Steve

    Nice post... however if you dont mind go easy on the cooking duties. I have invested several years in convincing her that I am a disaster in the kitchen. She also wont let me drink beer because in her opinion I fail to distinguish fact from fiction. In other words I lie like a rug when I have been drinking.
    Mark S Garland
    jlombardo
    Member
    Member
    Posts:145


    --
    03/16/2007 7:24 AM
    Mark,
    You are a blessed man to have such a partner in life......

    1) Learn to cook or learn to order out
    2) Tell her the lying like a rug when drinking is a guy thing and perfectly acceptable...then hand her a beer....
    3) I stand by my first post to you in this thread....

    With regars,
    Joe L.
    margar1
    Member
    Member
    Posts:98


    --
    03/23/2007 11:05 PM

    Wasted so much of my life, Runnin through the dark nights

    Mark S Garland
    ShingleBlisters
    Guest
    Guest
    Posts:11


    --
    03/27/2007 12:46 PM
    Unbelievable. Said it before and I'll say it again;

    When you're 65 and the lives of your kids has completely passed you by, you'll be apologizing for working this job. This job is for singles, empty nesters and retirees.
    margar1
    Member
    Member
    Posts:98


    --
    03/27/2007 10:12 PM

    This job is for retirees? hmmm....

    IMHO there is plenty of room for retirees but as for me a  I beleive a golfcouse is a good refuge for retirees.

    Mark S Garland
    catwoman
    Member
    Member
    Posts:47


    --
    03/28/2007 2:00 AM
    There are many professions in which the primary bread winner is absent from the family. I knew a friend who's husband worked on a tug boat, he was out for weeks at a time. Doctors spend much of their time on call. Many of those who work shift in places such as, factories, plants, and restaurants, never see their children; And of course, as Meg mentioned, our soldiers who are deployed, and they can not book a flight home to see their children when they get caught up at work or call them every night to say 'I love you". Everyone has a level of sacrifice. Some can make a situation work for them that others may see as impossible. So, should we so highly discourage parents of young children from this industry? It is a personal choice, I have in the past discouraged a young mother from taking her children on the road with her husband. I regret that. If you have an ounce of determination and passion for adventure, a life on the road could be a positive experience for a child. I know it must be very hard for those parents that stay at home with the children while their spouse goes on road. It is not easy being mother and father. It is just as hard for the parent whose spouse gets up at 4am ,at work by 5am, works construction, home at 6pm, dinner at 7pm, an hour with the kids and then goodnite...because your so dog tired you can't hold your eyes open; and for $16 bucks an hour at that. That green stuff is not easy to come by and we all have to sacrifice something to make it. To sum it all up.... Don't you wish it grew on a tree?..... but then we would all be spending much of our time planting and nurturing it... waiting for the harvest.
    You are not authorized to post a reply.


    These Forums are dedicated to discussion of Claims Adjusting.

    For the benefit of the community and to protect the integrity of the ecosystem, please observe the following posting guidelines: 
    • No Advertising. 
    • No vendor trolling / poaching. If someone posts about a vendor issue, allow the vendor or others to respond. Any post that looks like trolling / poaching will be removed.
    • No Flaming or Trolling.
    • No Profanity, Racism, or Prejudice.
    • Terms of Use Apply

      Site Moderators have the final word on approving / removing a thread or post or comment.