Saturday, July 5, 2008

"Adventures" of a Military Wife

It's funny this life we've chosen to live. Hours and hours away from even the closest part of our family. We only get to see family a few times a year. I get so irritated when wives sit and gripe about any particular part of military life like it's some unfair burden cast upon them that they are completely unable to control. It's not that way at all. Phil and I have decided to stay in the military even though we could get out. We have our reasons for staying in, of course. So let's keep it clear that my belly aching today is not me being a victim by any means. It is just a way of helping pass along the understanding of the things we have to live with because we decided to stay in the military. It seems there is a general misunderstanding of military families among those who aren't military, so I thought it would help to specify that.
This weekend Phillipp's Aunt Verna came for a very brief visit. We really loved having a bit of time together but it was so sad to part again. As I was sitting feeling sorry for myself, my feelings were suddenly amplified by the realization that this is not going to get any better in the near future. Soon we'll be moving to Virginia where we will not only still be far away from our family but will probably be spending quite a bit of time far away from Phil as well!
There is quite a bit of loneliness that goes along with being a military wife. Loneliness when the house is so dreadfully quite because the boys have gone to bed and Phil is on duty or working or just gone altogether because he's out to sea and there are so many long hours to pass before the boys wake up again. There is loneliness when a big holiday is coming up and all our friends have plans with extended family but ours is too far away. Loneliness comes with every move we make since we have never really had a lot of friends awaiting us at our destination. Loneliness also comes with a move when we leave all our friends that have taken us so long to find behind us. Loneliness sometimes creeps up slowly when you're waiting for a big deployment or suddenly like today shortly after Verna left.
I know this is where civilians say, "I don't know how you can do that." You just do, I guess. There's no magic to it. No special gift. It's not because I don't love my husband (thus not having a hard time when he goes away). This the life we've chosen and this is what goes along with it, so we do what we need to do. You find things that help you along the way. Sometimes it's keeping busy with things to do, sometimes it's cleaning incessantly, sometimes it's watching a whole lot of old Baywatch re-runs... and sometimes it's freshly baked peanut butter cookies... a lot of them... oh, who's kidding?! It was the cookie dough. In a minute it's also going to be going outside to pull weeds because for some reason that always makes me feel better.
So, before I go do that and take the last batch of cookies out of the oven (yes, some dough actually did make it in to the oven), here are some pictures from the tremendously fun couple of days we had with Auntie Verna and Randy.

Catching fireflies with Josh
He was very interested to watch one that was on the ground.

Yes, I have seen this look on Josh before...
This is us with Auntie Verna this morning before she left. Yes, those are my high school gym shorts if you must ask.

Jeremiah was promoted to a new kind of bed today! We changed around his crib to a toddler bed that he seems to be enjoying quite a bit!


Eskai said...

So I'm not a military wife but I do understand living far away from family and moving somewhere you don't have friends waiting on your arrival. It's sucks a lot of the time but God is so good and He goes before us. Even though you will be moving soon, I'm glad God allowed our paths to cross :-) And I know you said, "You just do it," when it comes to times apart from Phil but I do have a lot of respect for you guys Nicole. Without families like yours, we wouldn't have anything to celebrate on July 4th. So thanks for "just doing it." Love ya girl :-)

MOM said...

Wow, Jeremiah is growing up so fast. Now he can get out of bed on his own. I missed the fireflies this year. That is a great photo of you guys trying to catch them.
Sounded like you were having a rough time that day when Verna left. I totally understand how you must have been feeling. I am glad that you clarified yourself so that you don't come across as a victim. I know that it must be rough going through that even though you like to think you are strong. It still has to pull at your heart in many ways. I raised you to be independent, I just didn’t realize that it would help when you get through things like this, but then again I never thought you would get married and move away so far either. I love you and miss you being close enough to be able to spend time with you guys.