Saturday, January 10, 2009

truth about TDY's

I love it when hoards of people agree with me. It makes me glow for days. There seems to be a consensus on the whole deployment vs. TDY thing.

Deployments, to put it mildly, suck. I mean yeah you do get some nice tax free money but really the worry and what not almost negates it. They bring with them a feeling that is indescribable to someone who hasn't lived thru one. I remember when the war had first started and it was on the news 24/7, I slept with the tv on and would wake up constantly thru out the night to see if there was any news of a plane down or something equally horrific.

His "normal" schedule of constant flying doesn't bring that same fear. But despite not being a deployment it does bring about challenges.

I might not agree with that persons use of deployment but I do kinda understand what its like having a revolving door on your life for your husband to come and go. More emphasis on the going then the coming it seems sometimes.

Just like I said in the other post, I claim to be no expert on how the other branches work, or even how the other parts of the Marine Corps work, but in my husband's part of the air wing, time away from us is not few and far between. There will be lulls in flying, but those lulls are at most, maybe a month long.

And just like there are lulls there are times when it is constant. I remember the summer that dash-2 was a baby flyboy was home for just short of a month between May and November. And that month was broken up by a trip. And when he returned in November he was off again at the end of the month and missed dash-2's first birthday in December.

I know I made TDY's sound like they are a joke in that post. And sometimes they are. And I don't know how it works for guys who don't fly, I imagine everyone TDY's at some point for training or something. But for most trips flyboy is flying his ass off, staying in some crappy base lodging, missing meals because he's running on some whacked out schedule and not calling home because he, well, he can't.

Trips like that may only last a week or a month at a time, but we know that there will always be more. It is impossible to plan anything in this house. Most of the time I feel like I'm a month or two ahead of myself because I'm already trying to plan around next month's schedule. And the constant comings and goings is hell on small kids.

Typically we spend about 6 months out of the year together, busy years can be a fair amount less. Year after year after year. The Air Wing, I have learned, is not for the faint of heart.


  1. It's true that TDY/TAD's can be just as hard and grueling in their own way as deployments, especially if they are a constant. That said, there is still a difference. Mainly, that you don't have that omnipresent worry that you'll receive the worst type of official notification.

  2. very true MW. deployments are their own kinda beast. I just didnt want to give the impression that TDY's were a total joke. Even if I do occasionally give my husband a hard time about them!

  3. Honestly, since I am not a huge worrier, I think TDY/TAD like you guys have would be a lot harder for me to deal with. The deployment gives me time to adjust, and then when its over, its over. And I can deal with the 7 monthers that we've had - I may change my mind if a year-long deployment occurs in my future.

    But there's nothing that drives me crazy more than constant change - which is basically the world that you live in.

    All that, with two kids? You are seriously amazing.

  4. hahaha! Girl, you can send me your child as long as I can call him "BC" for birth control. I promise to feed him. I promise nothing about poop related problems. As it is, my dog grosses me out. I laughed very loudly outloud when you told me that.

  5. At times, I kinda agree with loquita. Even tho' we did it to ourselves, the geo-bachelor thing in Korea where we only saw Stretch on the weekends for close to a year was a bit hellish. The kids were 4 and 1, and we would basically go thru the deployment cycle emotionally every bloody week. It would take me until Wed. or Thurs. to get the kids back on routine just to have him come home and screw it all up again! But it was that or never spend time as a family. There were no really good choices and it just sucked.

    But hey, I lived to tell the tale... (I guess that's a good thing and I'm not going to speculate on my sanity...)

    Oh, and Loqi, I didn't have that worry so much on the last deployment and it was a year (but boy, did it suck!)

  6. My heart goes out to you and your kids. You are so brave and strong I would freak out. You and your family deserve so much for the sarfices you are making for this country.

  7. I agree with you on the definition of deployment and use of it otherwise lessens the significance of having a loved one in a combat zone, regardless of whatever some reintegration manual says. Call things like they are. That's what the words are for. If the branches want to have different definitions of what that means, fine. I get that 6 months at sea is a deployment.

    That said, clearly not all TDYs/TADs are created equal, just like deployments. But the use of these terms gives us a frame-work to work in, a place to start understanding. Communication is difficult enough. Let's not muddy the waters further so someone can feel better about her husband being in Texas without her. He is still gone no matter what we call it.

    OK. I'll stop rambling now.


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