Thursday, December 13, 2012

Adapt and Overcome. Right?

I'm thinking its time for me to re-evaluate my expectations of myself. 

Something tells me that I'm not the only one who has had such a revalation, be it during a deployment or not.

I don't think I can sustain my existence if I do.  At least not a sane existence.  I mean if its cool to become some pj wearing nutjob with a wicked case of bedhead standing on the side of the road I'm half way there! 

I have a bit of a habit to take on projects, a little one here, another small one there.  This one for this kids class, oh wait! have to do the same thing for the other kids class, then we can't forget kid three!

This is going to kill me, if I don't knock it the f off.

Deployments are a tricky, wicked beast.  There is the obvious, most noticeable part of trying to do everything for everyone by yourself.  No spouse is coming home to help out with bedtime or clean up the kitchen while you bathe the kids.

{insert side note here.... I have boys, if I don't keep half an eye on them during shower/bathe time, nothing gets clean.  In fact the other day the six year old took a shower and came out totally dry, turns out he hid behind the shower liner the whole time.}

If it is going to get done, I'm the one doing it.  Or at least helping out the kids while they "help" out.

But there is also the emotional stress of helping your kids cope, being the one to absorb the anger, and folks, there is anger.  Raw, emotional, nasty, downright ugly anger.  Your trying to help them while trying to stay afloat yourself. Beacause lets not forget the worry.  The constant worry of the unknown.

And shoot, the known isn't always so comforting either.

It takes a toll on you.  I'm only a mere 17 days into this deployment {not that I'm counting cause I'm totally not}and I'm exhausted.  Emotional and physically.

And I have a head cold.

Pity me dammit.

But seriously, I am realizing that I'm going to have to scale back or else big mama is gonna snap and its not going to be pretty.

Normally by this time I would have probably baked 20 dozen cookies, they'd be on pretty trays ready to go around.  Yeah not so much.  I took cookies into hubs work when I took some boxes that were going out on a plane.  I took em in plastic bags and not even festive ones.

My ornament swap stuff?  Went out yesterday.  And poor wifeyofasailor sent me a wonderful box and her box hasn't even gone out yet.


We've missed wrestling the past two times and I'm debating about blowing it off tonight because while I thought everyone would do better if I kept them BUSY BUSY BUSY I'm finding its the opposite.  They just want to come home from school and chill.

This makes me a crappy sports mom.  {Though to my defense this is just a wrestling clinic, he's not competing and frankly, its not really run very well. }

But you know what, I'm also starting to think that I need to do what I need to do.  I'm doing this crap all on my own, I don't have family sitting around the corner or a husband coming home tonight... or even in a week or two.

This isn't a sprint its a marathon

{thank God its not a year long marathon, I do so love the Marine Corps for their deployments}

As the Marines say, adapt and overcome.  We are getting thru this, frankly, we are doing well, but we are going to have to make some adjustments.

What kind of adjustments do you make during deployments?  Tell me I'm not the only one blowing off sports practice?

Saturday, December 8, 2012

More on my obsession with photo cards

My christmas cards went out. And in my head I'm moving on to the next holiday. That's what happens sometimes in military households, you look past where you are to a date a couple months down the line because its either when he's going to be home or closer to when he's going to be home. 

I'm looking forward less for those reason and more because I want to send out more photo cards.

I love them. THAT MUCH.


And not to mention, photo cards are great during a deployment because its a card AND a photo to send to dad. 

So I'm thinking that New Year's is too close to Christmas to send a photo card and January's holiday of Martin Luther King Day is probably not quite the best candidate but Valentines? I'm all over that like a dog with a bone.

And St. Patrick's Day?

Don't mind if I do dress my kids up in green and snap a pic. 

Now to make me sound less nutty, I don't send these cards to everyone that I sent Christmas cards too, just grandma and folks like that.  Don't fear getting a card in your mailbox 5 times a year.

Unless you want one.  Then I'd be more then happy to oblige!

I was mindlessly surfing around last night for holiday cards and I looked at cards on Minted {which by the way, I could have been lost on their site for years, its that good. They have every card you could ever want and every card has options for colors, layout, shapes, paper thickness.  I don't do well with options}

of forgot where I was going... but do you know what I thought was really amazing....they have... SHAPES!

Shut up! 

Their cards have shapes! Pretty scalloped edges, funky curves, and gloriously thick paper...oh my dears... this could be love.

How unique are these cards?!  Because I've already lamented how I hate it when someone else sends out the same card as mine. 

Look out peeps, my valentine cards are going to rock your world. 

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

This deployment versus those deployments

So far we are 10 days into this deployment.  I have to tell you, doing this shit with kids sucks.  Now lets just get this out of the way now, I do a lot of single parenting and my kids are really used to not having dad around.  The thing is is that we are used to him coming and going, not just going. 

He's still gone a good 6 mths out of the year but he's back and forth, in and out of the house.  Saying goodbye for 7 mths hit them hard.

The oldest is pissed off and angry.  He thinks dad left because he wanted to leave, I mean who wouldn't want to go spend Arab Spring Part 2 in a third world craphole? He thinks he left because he would rather be there then here.  He's angry and he's taking it out on who ever is around at the moment.  Good times.

The middle just misses dad.  Especially at bedtime.  And dinner.  And sports practice.  And in the morning.  And during recess. And at snack.  And when he gets a haircut. 

You get the picture.

The third is by far the easiest.  At three he says he misses dad and then he noticed a blue bird fly by and he's good to go. 

If only they could all be like that.

Now that's not to say that its total misery around here, its not.  Just like for us adults, it comes in waves.  Life is going along and your having a great day and boom.  You miss em.  Just like that.  Only we are a little more prepared emotionally to deal with it. 

We've been very lucky, granted we deal with nonstop coming and going year after year, but we haven't done many "typical" deployments as a family.  This doing it with kids is a new thing to me. 

And its kicking my ass. 

However, I've been thinking.  I remember deployments in my life before kids {apparently I did indeed have a life before children!} and I remember laying on the couch and wallowing in my own self pity for days in the beginning.  {ahem weeks. Beginning weeks.}

This time, there is none of that.  And really... there is no time to feel sad for not getting emails or phone calls.  Someone has homework they need help with, there is a fight to breakup, someone got there hand stuck in a toilet. 

By the way... that can happen.

In some ways, I like this busy busy busy much better.  If it weren't for seeing my kids cry for daddy and knowing that feeling of separation, this deployment would be a cake walk.

So I'm torn... which way do you think is easier?

This is not to get into a "oh those people with kids have it so much harder" or "those without kids just can't understand".  I'm just curious what your opinion is on deployments.  Which have you experienced and what is your take on them.  Its important to remember that all deployments are not created equal.  Sometime are longer then other, some have great communications, some are to crap holes, some are to pretty nice places.

But please... weigh in!