Hurry up… and wait.
My mom’s weeklong visit came and went. It was great to catch up with her after not seeing each other in about 3 (!) years. I miss waking up in the mornings and preparing coffee and breakfast, sitting with her at the dining table for a couple of hours just chatting about everything after we ate. Amelie, our cat, absolutely couldn’t get enough of her either. Since it was her first time in Colorado I had a loose plan of what I wanted to show her, but we didn’t manage to see everything. In the end, though, she had a really great time and the most important thing is that we got to enjoy each other’s company. I have a wonderful mom and I can honestly say that I truly appreciate her so much more now as an adult. She’s one of the most kind hearted, humble, and generous people I know, and she’s fun to hang out with. I remember looking up at her when I was a kid and thinking how beautiful she was. She’s 60 now and I still think she’s beautiful, she’s aged amazingly and I can only hope that I can have that sort of luck. Ha.
Anyway, my mom’s visit this time was even more special to me because I also realized that I really needed to see her after this past year. I enjoyed taking care of her and showing her some of my favorites spots here, and she cooked a couple of my favorite things that I grew up with. It meant a lot to me when she told me she was proud of me and in awe of my strength, and also the way she talked about the husband. When it was time to see her go at the airport, I felt like a pouty child. We hugged and told each other how we felt, I bit back tears and every part of my body felt like it was going to melt into the floor. This feeling of complete vulnerability and unconditional love leaves me gasping for air because it takes me off guard every time, but even more so now. It’s something only my mom can make me feel and only one other person comes close to doing that to me (if you haven’t figured it out, I’m referring to the husband). I don’t think many people get to see those sides of us, at least I think they shouldn’t. They’re special and should be reserved for people who won’t hurt us.
I’m (still) waiting for the husband to come home from Afghanistan, he’s also waiting. We don’t know when his flight is yet and I’ve learned not to freak the hell out. He’s just as anxious, if not more, to get back home so asking over and over or complaining won’t do anything for either of us. This time also gives me a chance to reflect on the past year apart, it’s too long for a couple to not be together. Our commitment to each other and all of our hard work will be tested when he comes back. I think other military spouses can probably relate to the little twinge of fear in the back of the mind…the what ifs. Have we both changed a lot and are we truly growing together? Will I be able to share this space that was my own again, easily? Is he proud of how I’ve handled everything this past year? Ha…so many questions that can only be answered when we are together again. A lot of silly questions swim around in my head, too, but I think it’s natural to feel nervous. This isn’t like a “normal” business trip. His homecoming will be awesome and it will also bring other challenges that I welcome. Even with the bit of fear that I have, he’s my best friend and I can’t wait to have him back.
I also think about the friends who have a spouse currently deployed or will have a spouse deploying or have had a spouse deployed. We are all in different stages of this life and none of us have it harder than the other. I’ve seen spouses tear each other down because of envy and other things, but what’s the point? I’m always happy when soliders get to come home to their families, even if I have to wait for my husband to come home still. The sad fact is that there are many families who won’t get a chance to see their loved ones again, so those of us who are able to should be really thankful. It can be a tough life and we all have a choice to keep out as much negative as we possibly can. This is one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned in the past year, actually. Negativity can take many forms, but it really does stem from inside oneself. Even if you think you have it all “under control,” turns out that isn’t always the case.
So here we are hurrying up to wait. Such a typical thing in the military! Even if that’s the case, I’m thankful to everyone who is helping get the men and women back home safely. There’s a lot to coordinate over there so even if we’re feeling incredibly anxious for this deployment to be over, there’s still a lot of work to be done. I’m also very thankful for the USO for providing free internet access (and other comforts) to the soldiers. I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to get emails from the husband right now while he’s waiting to find out when he gets to leave. They aren’t as often as I’d like them to be, but I’ll take few over none at all.
Hopefully, the next post I write from this blog will be after the husband is finally home. I’m jumping up and down inside thinking about that. It’s been interesting sharing a bit of my life with everyone during this deployment and I hope that whoever reads this blog has perhaps seen a different point of view when it comes to a military couple. I’m still not really on Twitter, so for those who want to get in touch I think you know how. As always, I hope you are all well and happy!