Being a military spouse sucks, and I mean really sucks!
Being a spouse to someone in the military is a challenge, you are now not only married to your husband but also the government. You may think that this sounds dramatic but seriously talk to any military spouse and they will tell you, it’s fricken hard! The military decides where you live, when you can go on vacation as a family, when you get time off work (if they even want to give it to you), if you get to be there for big family moments, and those are just some of the day to day things that happen to us living this lifestyle. Today is one of those days that they decided to turn our world upside down again.
Never prepared enough…
We knew this day was coming since he got home from the last deployment in June, but you’re never actually prepared.
In the weeks before deployment you have so many different feelings and thoughts going through your head.
You feel sad that you’re not going to be able to sleep in the same bed as your spouse for the next however many months. Sad that your kids are going to have to live this part of their lives without their dad, yet again. You feel sad that your husband is missing out on so many things, even if they are small things, he’s missing them!
You feel angry! Angry that your husband gets to be kid-free for months and doesn’t have to worry about waking up in the middle of the night, changing diapers, listening to a million temper tantrums, dealing with sick kids, and the fighting. You’re angry that the chain of command decided it was necessary for them to leave once again. Angry that you don’t ever get to call him when your having a bad day and that all communication is in your spouse and the militaries hands.
You’re jealous that all these people get to spend the next several months with your husband when you would give your left leg to get another day! Jealous that they get to go see all these cool parts of the world and explore while you’re at home doing your normal day-to-day grind.
With all of emotions that hit you, you try to make every moment count before they leave. Don’t waste a single second sitting around doing nothing! The minute that your spouse is on their phone you are quick to remind them that they won’t be seeing the family for MONTHS and they need to be more than attentive to everyone. If I had a dollar for every time I said “you go do it, I’m not going to have any help for the next several months” I’d be rich!
I stress out about how we’re going to spend our remaining days with Matt. The Zoo, the park, Seaworld, ice cream, movie nights, all the Christmas activities you can think of and of course the “get everything done that needs to be done” days! Every waking moment has to be filled with family time.
By the time deployment comes, I feel like we’ve done nothing and that I’ve spent zero time with my husband! The truth is, I have so many feelings built up that no amount of time would be enough for me.
Today’s the day
The day of is such a rollercoaster, one minute your happy and okay then the next minute your on the verge of tears. When it’s time to say goodbye it feels like someone is stabbing a knife through my heart.
As I watch Matt give each one of the kids hugs and kisses I can’t help but think of what’s going through their little heads. Of course little August has no clue what’s happening but the majority of his life his dad has been gone. Axel is in his own world most of the time but when the moment hit him that his dad wasn’t coming home tomorrow it broke my heart. Then there’s Mia, she has gone through the goodbyes so many times that she’s pretty used to it. She’s 6 years old and he has missed 4 of those birthdays so far. She is the one who struggles the most while Matt is gone. Mia hugs her dad for so long that I have to look away so I don’t show her that I’m upset.
Last it’s my turn to say goodbye and it seems like I can’t let go. My love, support, left hand, and heart is leaving me. In that moment it feels like life will stop without him. I squeeze him and pull him in closer to me so I can remember every last inch of him. Crying in his arms but trying to keep it together enough that the kids don’t see me being emotional. The last kiss that never seems to be long enough. You never want it to be the last one because that last one means that’s it for what seems an eternity.
The car door closes and you’ve said goodbyes, the hardest part is over. Now you get 24 hours. What does that mean? You get 24 hours to have a pity party. Eat like crap, stay in your pajamas, watch all the tv you want, cry, do whatever you have to do. Once those 24 hours are up, so are you! It’s time to kick deployment’s ass! You set goals for what you want to accomplish for the deployment, start that workout regimen you have been eyeing, keep the house clean and continue on with life. Does this mean you can’t have bad days? No, of course your going to have days harder than others but take each day in stride.
Life goes on and you have to deal. I get asked all the time “how do you do it?” I don’t have a choice! I have to take care of my children, house, and all the other things that come with being an adult. I take it one moment at a time. Not one day at a time like some people say because sometimes thinking of the whole day ahead of you can be too much to handle. Hour by hour you get through it. Some days you need to cry, save that for when the kids go to bed. You keep the happy face and stay strong during the day and at night crumble if you have to. But the next day you have to get up and be ready to take on the day.
Once all the days are behind you, your family will be whole again.
My last thoughts, please say a prayer to whatever higher power you believe in for all of the moms, dads and children who are serving our country and pray for a safe return home!