Saturday, December 19, 2009

Being Married to a Chef Isn't All Glam

What is with people and the notion that being married to a chef is glamorous? Newsflash... I'm here to tell ya - it's far from glamour. I know it's hard to believe!

I was out doing a little Christmas shopping and stopped into one of my fave stores to peruse it for Yummy to let him know if he should head in there or not for his holiday shopping. I asked if they would be open on Sunday - this is his ONLY day off as he works 12-15 hours, 6 days a week. Of course the store isn't open on Sunday but the sales person asked if I wanted to pick things out for them to hold and he could run in on his break and pick them up. Break!?! What break? Then she asked, "Well, doesn't he have just 10 minutes that he can run in and pick up some packages?" At this point, I had to nicely explain to her that she really didn't understand that what little time he has is very valuable and when he's running a restaurant that is now doing lunch for the 4 weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas and running 200+ covers at lunch and 350+ for dinner that he doesn't have 10 minutes to leave the restaurant since when one shift gets done, he starts prepping for the next let alone time to eat or sit down! The owner of the store was there and she somewhat got it as she knows how busy the restaurant is during the holidays but I just thought to myself - what a naive person.

Besides Yummy not having time to shop for the holidays, I literally see him for 10 minutes in the morning before I leave for school and then an hour when he gets home and before I go to bed. Then there are the times that I am in bed before he gets home because I just can't stay awake any longer.

Not to mention the holidays that I spend alone... Yummy works on Easter, Mother's Day, Father's Day, Fourth of July, Christmas Eve, New Year's Eve and Valentine's Day. We're fortunate that the restaurant is closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas! It's a grand time spending the holidays alone and having people pity you because your husband is working.

Don't get me wrong - I love my husband beyond words can express. I wouldn't have him change for anything in the world. I stand tall and proud when I tell people what my husband does for a living. I'm not complaining about my life -it just amazes me at how some people do not think about what it's really like. They just don't get what it takes to run a restaurant and the downside to it.

So yes - being married to a chef is just glamorous.


Anonymous said...

Well now I understand!

Be tickled he has work now tho! Any work!

Hope y;all have a big Christmas.

Maggie said...

I think people think being a chef is glamorous because of the food network and the recent onslaught of famous foodies.

There are lots of people who have crappy hours and are super busy during the holiday. I'm glad your hubby has Christmas day off. My brother is a prison guard and he's on duty 12 hours Christmas day. :(

Honey said...

Sage - I am thankful because we all know that could change in heartbeat.

Maggie - You're probably right. Those damn shows with all the glam and starry eyed wanna be chefs.

Prison guard would be another one of those jobs that are completely under appreciated.

Kerilyn said...


My name is Kerilyn. I'm in the process of creating an Online Support Community for Significant Others in the Restaurant Industry. Full Site to launch in December 2010.

It's not all glam.. trust me I hear you.. we need a place for us.. and that's what I'm trying to create.

Check it out and feel free to email me if you have any questions at

Have a great weekend!

Anonymous said...

I(We) are sorry, You know we love you/need you. Thank you and It will get better. I hope women like your self will continue to stsnd for the thing we do. Chef Nikos

Catherine Gill said...

Well said!
My partner is a Sous Chef at a busy restaurant in Cardiff, Wales. He works anything from 12 - 16 hours a day and most weeks are 6 day weeks! Holidays are a laugh-off, because I know the answer is; he's working! I feel like the single girl at functions with family and friends. I love him dearly and would never leave him but I dont want children with him because I'm not prepared to be a 'single parent'. I see him for about 30mins in the morning and the restaurant closes at 11:30 so I'm asleep when he gets home gone midnight! On the weekend I am able to stay up later to see him, but then he is too tired to talk and just wants to go to bed (understandable because of the hours he works!) I love him and miss him all the time. His day off is the most exciting day in our house, I suppose we're lucky in a way that we value our precious time together because we get so little of it.

Thank-you for writing that, I think sometimes being a 'chef widow' can feel like you're the only one.