So we’re gearing up for the big “D Day.” Deployment is right around the corner and I (like every other spouse) am practically breaking out in hives with all the stress and anticipation. We have very minimal time left to have important conversations, make sure all the ducks are in a row, and try to soak in a few peaceful family days.
I don’t know about you, but often these (very few) days are filled with high expectations and the stress of it all can sometimes lead to bickering as we watch the time tick down. In reality we’re just dreading what’s to come and then feeling guilty for wasting precious moments lashing out at each other. It absolutely sucks.
Here’s the thing though: I think this is totally normal.
We’ve done this a few times and every time my husband has to leave for deployment the waiting for it to actually surface (pun intended) is so much harder than the deployment itself. The last few weeks are just finally admitting this is happening, yet still not ready to succumb to it all.
The time is spent going over passwords and passports. Making reminders to “take out trash on Wednesday night”, and pointing out the right soap in the garage for the car (not to be confused with the “wrong soap”). It’s spent scouring Amazon for stupid small trinkets that will make our spouses laugh, writing love letters, and then shoving it all into a box hoping the treats don’t taste weird in three months time. They are spent feeling a little scared, a little bit of self pity, a little bit of big anger towards the big NAVY, yet ultimately knowing: “we signed up for this.” We are trying to relish every moment while simultaneously feeling like thar moment is slipping away.
The inevitable truth is that soon there will be a closing steel door that will drown the communication and connection from our loved one. Damn. That was deep.
Okay, metaphors aside, just try to be gentle on yourself and your spouse during the pre-deployment days. Make a list of all the conversations to be had, embrace the days, but also try not to be disappointed when things get changed or everyone is low energy. Try to remember the build up is hard but as soon as the big D day comes the sooner the timer back home can start.
And hopefully it’s all (relatively) smooth sailing from there. Just don’t get me started on Murphy…
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