Tuesday, March 24, 2015

This Army life (and deployment)...



No exaggeration, this was the best moment of my life.

Spending a whole year apart - birthdays, anniversaries, 4th of July, Thanksgiving, Christmas - is not easy. We had already spent many special occasions apart as a result of military training (I think we've averaged one birthday together every 3 years).  But deployment was different. You don't have the luxury of looking forward to seeing your spouse in just a few days or weeks. The months stretch long, and it feels endless sometimes.

There are so many emotions that coincide with the days apart - emotions that are hard to comprehend unless you've been there. Before he left, there was fear. What if he came back a different person? What would he see in combat? Would he return home scarred, physically or emotionally, from war? So many questions, and no answers.

There is also a lot of emotion from trying to prepare for letting go of the person you love most in the world. It literally feels like you're being torn apart. How do you let go? How do you continue living when the person you want to "do" life with isn't there? We struggled to make sense of it all and somehow savor the moments we had left in the midst of so many emotions.

Then, during the deployment, there's the question of HOW you do something you've never done before. There are so many people who told me that they didn't know how I did it, believing that somehow I was stronger than them. The truth is, I'm not any stronger. I'm not any more able to let go of my husband for a year than anyone else. I didn't have a clue how to "do" a year apart from him. I just bumbled my way along and did it.

As the deployment came to a close, there were again, lots of emotions. Would we struggle to adjust? Would Selah act strange around her daddy? How would it feel to be back in my love's arms again, after so long? Of course, there was a TON of excitement too.

When our homecoming day came, excitement was really all I felt. Our year apart was complete.