I get so frustrated during this phase of deployment. We are on the downside and closing in on the end, still no estimated return date, not even a window. I have a general idea, but it doesn’t help. I’ve spent the last six and a half months living without him. I’m the only disciplinarian to my kids, the only one hugging them and kissing them goodnight. I never sleep alone, the boys are thoughtful enough to crawl in my bed, every single night. I miss talking to an actual adult most nights of the week. I’m finally use to cooking what I want for dinner, cleaning when I feel like it, watching what I want, when I want. I’m finally content with my “single” life. Just when it’s time to gear up for him to get back and everything will change again.
We are definitely in for some change. I started a new job while he was gone. It isn’t a 9-5, go to work kind of job. It’s much more than that and definitely something he just doesn’t “get.” It’s a start-up, web based business that is growing by leaps and bounds. It encompasses days, nights and weekends, but thankfully mostly from home. I’ve made new friends and grown closer to old ones. I’ve stayed more than busy and it’s been a necessary thing for me to keep my mind busy and off the thought that he isn’t here.
By the time he gets back, the boys will both have had their birthdays and finished another year of school. They’ve changed very much, who wouldn’t over eight months? Benji has learned an entire new vocabulary and will be headed into Kindergarten. Colby is going into third grade and I can tell he is thinking about everything much more than before. He is trying out his new-found independence and pushing limits. He’s still not too old to kiss me before he gets out of the car for school and that’s fine with me.
I know there are always reintegration issues. We both experienced different things, grew in different ways and we’ll have to come together to work through our new life together. We’ve done this too many times already and yet, it never gets easier. I am already mulling it over in my head, wondering what this reunion is going to challenge us with. I can’t help but wonder how he’s changed. Will he like the changes I’ve made? What if we can’t find each other even when we are sleeping next to each other?
Sometimes it is all too overwhelming and I realize I can’t do anything about any of these thoughts. They are leeches and if I let them stay they’ll continue to suck the life out of me. I burn them off and throw them far away. I refuse to wade through those dirty waters of doubt and fear. I don’t want the leeches that suck my happiness away. I don’t want to fear the ferocious animals that may be out there, waiting to attack me and tear away my last thoughts of hope and happiness.
It is during this time that I cling to a mantra I learned years ago: “Just for today…”