Friday, December 31, 2010

41 Days Down! 151 Days To Go!

     Tomorrow will mark a month and a half into this deployment! I can't really say it will quite be the 1/4 mark because there was travel time at the start and will be travel time at the end, but still, this is the longest separation we have gone through aside from when we were first married and stationed at separate bases for nearly a year. David is struggling a little bit. I can see the tiredness and stress etched on his face every night when we do our video conversations. It's even more frustrating for him right now because he got moved and strongly dislikes his roommate, it's raining and his roof is leaking so water is flooding his room, if he wants to get it fixed they have to come in the middle of the day, which is when he sleeps and needs every second he can get, his schedule is being shifted, and now, to make matters worse, finance is refusing to pay his travel voucher. So he is definitely having  a rough time right now. It's hard to watch him going through a hard time and not really being able to do much for him. As I have mentioned before, my husband is not an emotional person by any means, so I am not even sure that trying to provide him with emotional support really helps him at all. I'm not saying that as a criticism to him or in a "feel sorry for myself" sort of way, just stating a fact. I think for him the conversations we have are more about him trying to give ME emotional support if I think he would honestly rather use that time sleeping. So it is kind of hard to know what to do. Part of me really wishes I had deployed before we got married. It was something I wanted to do, and maybe then I could have some idea of how to help him or what types of things to do for him or get him or whatever. Even with his packages he has told me he wants the practical stuff that he can use and really isn't concerned with the personal or emotional trinkets of whatever. So, again, it's just hard to know how to help... All I can do is hope that if there was something I can do, he would let me know. 
     Anyways, tonight I got to go on a "date" with my Bestie :) We went to the movies and saw "How Do You Know". I guess, from what I have heard, it got really bad ratings, but we both LOVED it! It was really funny and super cute! It was a little on the long side. It started at 5:10 and we didn't get out til 7:30, but it was definitely a good movie. There was even one part in the movie where we joked that we almost peed our pants! It was hilarious! It was nice to get out for a relaxing evening without the kids, and we don't get to spend as much time together as we would like, so it was really nice. I can't wait til we get to do it again :)
     Not too much else new going on. Just still trying to sort out all of my feelings about this whole deployment. Still alot of mixed feelings going on. There were a lot of mixed feelings about some things before the deployment even started, so in a way, I am still hoping that this deployment can be a positive thing for us in the long run. It's not always easy to see the positives in a not so good situation, and it's even harder to fight the guilt of seeing a deployment as possibly being a good thing, especially since he could be in danger. He has told me about some incidents that have happened since he has been there, so it is kind of scary. I am glad that he tells me though. I am not someone that likes to having things sugar coated to give me peace of mind. If I thought he wasn't telling me the bad things to protect me or keep me from worrying, my mind would go nuts worrying about all the bad possibilities, and what would go on in my mind would probably be worse than reality. So knowing that he will tell me if something bad happens keeps me from leaving it to my imagination, if that makes any sense. So, we realize that him being deployed is not the ideal situation, but we both felt it was the right thing and came at the right time. It was something he really wanted to do, and it gives us both time to reflect on a lot of things. Of course, we would both like the circumstances to be different, but a deployment had to come eventually. So I think we are both doing what we can to make the best of it, although as I mentioned before, he is having a rough time of it right now and it hasn't exactly been easy for me either. 
    Most of my hardship comes from having 2 toddlers. I love my boys and I would not trade them for the world, but it is very hard to raise two boys alone. Like I said in an earlier post, my heart goes out to all the single mothers out there because I have only been doing it for 2 1/2 months and I feel spread so thin I can't even think sometimes. The crazy thing is that we aren't even really doing anything. We don't go out much, aside from for essential stuff like grocery shopping and dr. appts. So we aren't running around like crazy. I still do my workout 3 times a week, but beyond that we aren't doing so much. So I don't understand how I am so tired and worn out all the time! My house is a disaster area, me energy is nonexistent, and our sleep schedule is still way off kilter. However, there are still the good things happening, too, especially when it comes to me learning how to be myself again. I suspect David is having some of that too. I am hoping the separation will remind us who we were as individuals before we got married and so much changed. I can't help but wonder sometimes, if I was the person I am now when David and I first met if we would be where we are now, and if he was the person he is now back then (I hope that made sense). Marriage has changed us both so much. In many ways it has changed us for the better. We have grown together as a couple and we are way more in sync with eachother than we were at the start. However, we have also become comfortable and don't really try anymore. I guess this is true of a lot of marriages, but I am really hoping that this separation, as hard as it is, will really help us appreciate eachother more and realize that we DO still need to try because our marriage has gotten very rocky at certain points and every time it happens it seems like we care about trying less and less. We aren't on the brink of divorce or anything like that, but I wouldn't say we were at the peak of happiness either. So, when it gets tough and I really start to miss him, I remind myself that the length of this deployment could actually be a big advantage to us. When he went to Korea for a month we missed eachother and it changed things a little, but it really wasn't long enough for us to seriously miss eachother and really get a taste of what our lives would be like without eachother. So in the hard times I am going to try to remind myself that the more we miss eachother now, the more we will cherish eachother. 
      Anyways, as you have probably learned by now, I tend to get on these trains of thought and ramble forever, so I am going to close before I can find something else to write a book about! LOL! I can't believe there is only 1 more day in 2010! On one hand, so much has changed this year that it's hard to believe that it has only been 1 year since we last celebrated New Year's in California, but at the same time, it seems like this year has just flown by! I guess the boys and I will probably just hang out at home tomorrow, and I am sure we will all be awake to watch the ball drop since this is like the middle of the afternoon for Austin...LOL! In case I don't get a chance to write tomorrow, HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!! <3 

Highlight of the day: Spending some quality time with the Bestest, especially since it was kid free! I love all three of the kids, but it was nice to have some adult time with her! LOL! I love you Nina, thanks for restoring some of my sanity! You are the best :) 

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

1m 1w 4d Down! 153 Days to go!

    I was going to change the title to "__ Days Down! ___ Days to go", but it has only been 39 days... that's kind of It seems like a lot more when I put it in month But for the count down 153 days definitely sounds better than months! Anyways, almost a quarter of the way through this deployment, not bad! Hopefully the coming months will go just as quickly! Being in Hawaii for Christmas was definitely a blessing because it did not feel like Christmas at all. So it wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. I went all out getting stuff for the kids and made it all about them, but it really did feel like just another day to me. We stayed home  and on Christmas Eve David got onlline around midnight and the boys opened their presents with him in a video conversation! It was really nice :) All in all I think they had a good Christmas :) They made out like little bandits! LOL! We had some offers to go places for Christmas dinner, but at first we thought David was going to be online so we were just going to stay here and video chat with him, but then the plans changed, so we were going to go, but then both boys started to get sick so we stayed home. I think that was for the best though. Despite the very kind and generous offers, like I said, I did ok because it didn't feel like Christmas. But if we would have gone and spent it with other families and really celebrated it like Christmas that would have made it more real and that would have been hard, so I think it worked out ok for us. But it was so nice to have so many people come forward and make the offer. It's nice to feel that support from people. David's work even called and checked up on us and reminded me that they are there if we need anything. It was really nice. 
    Other than that, not too much else has been going on. Today was my workout day and that was such a great stress reliever. A friend had a birthday party downtown and I thought about going, but I already have the babysitter several days this week, one of which is for a hot date I have!!! LOL! Me and my bestie are having a date night and going out for dinner and a movie :) It will be great to spend some time with her because we haven't gotten to lately, and this is the first time we will get out without the kids, so it will be nice to go have adult conversation with her instead of prying our kids apart from fighting over some toy or something! LOL! 
    I also spoiled myself for Christmas! I had been talking in a previous post about feeling so guilty about not being able to really keep the house clean and keeping up with laundry and dishes and all that. So I decided to spoil myself. I scoured craigslist for a while and found someone that does house keeping and she is just looking to make some extra money for a plane ticket home and she is willing to clean my whole house (2 story, 3 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath, close to 2000 sq ft) for $50! There is no way I am going to pay her that little and I will be helping her, too, but most people were charging $150-$300! So this was obviously an AWESOME deal! I am not someone that can sit back and let someone else clean my house, so I will be doing a lot of the work too, but it will just be nice to have the extra set of hands to help me. And for that price, I might start doing it regularly if I find it being a persistent issue throughout the deployment. The housework is one of the things that is bringing me down the worst right now, so just knowing that this time tomorrow my house will be completely clean (aside from what the kids destroy is a huge weight off my shoulders! 
    Anyways, other than that, there is not too much else going on right now. David's birthday is coming up in 2 weeks and I have been waiting on him to decide what he wants. He told me that he wants an egg crate mattress topper thingy for his bed there, so that is what I am going to get him. I feel kind of bad because its not more personal, but right now I want to focus on the practical stuff and what he needs. And he is not really a sentimental person anyways, so those kind of presents don't usually mean as much to him anyways. So at least I know I am getting something he can really use. Then my birthday is exactly 1 week after his, and our anniversary is exactly 1 week after my birthday. So January is a big month for But we have decided that we want to do our anniversary gifts in person and we want to have a romantic overnight date for our anniversary, so we are going to celebrate in July. We met on the 4th of July in 2004, so we still consider that an anniversary for us, as well, so we will celebrate our anniversary around that time. 
     Well, I just got off the video chat with David and I am trying to get Austin to sleep so I am going to get him laid down and I am going to read my book :) I am still totally hooked on the Vampire Academy series! I am about to finish the 5th book and they just keep getting better and better! Only 1 book left after this one which makes me sad :( But there is another book by this author that people have recommended, then I am also hearing about some other good series' that I will have to read :) 

Highlight of my Day: Last night when I was changing Austin's diaper, he had a REALLY bad one! Now as a Mom of 2 boys, I have changed some really bad diapers, but this one far surpassed anything I have ever experienced. . .LOL! So I made a disgusted face and said "Oh man Austin, did something die in your butt?" Well, he went to play with Aiden and said "Guess what Aiden! Something died in the butt!" I about died laughing! Well, tonight we were video chatting with David and Austin said it to him! He said "Something died in the butt! And it was really Really REALLY bad!!!" LOL! I don't think I have ever seen David laugh so hard! It made me so happy to see him lighten up and laugh like that! With everything he is dealing with there, any smile from him is a great thing to see. But this was just such pure laughter it was great :) And it was even better because Austin and Aiden were in hysterics too! So I got to see all my boys laughing together :) Definitely the highlight of my day :)

Friday, December 24, 2010

1 Month 6 Days Down! 157 Days to Go!

     Ok, so I changed the date I am counting down to again! LOL! I am counting down til May 31st. He should be home sooner than that, but I would rather get him home with 5 days left on my countdown calendar than get to day 1 and realize I still have a week to go. Anyways, some people seem to think that the whole countdown thing is just torturing myself, but honestly, I have found it very comforting. Every day that I get through is one day closer to getting my husband home. And it's nice to look at this posts title and realize it wasn't that long ago I was counting days, then it was weeks, and now I am into months! That's awesome to me! David and I are talking less and less, which is hard. We were talking 2-3 times a day, with 1-2 quick conversations and 1 long one, but things have gotten so crazy for him and he is so tired, that now we are down to one conversation a day and it's usually no more than 15-20 minutes. It gets really hard sometimes. I feel myself start to get frustrated that he can't stay awake 5 or 10 more minutes to talk to me, but I have to remind myself, he is not purposely not talking to me; he is tired and he really does need the rest. It's not always easy, but I am proud of myself because I have been able to keep my feelings in check and make sure to always put his needs first. Those of you that know me know that that is very hard for me. Not putting his needs first, of course, that is not hard, but keeping my mouth shut about how I am feeling is. Even though I am not upset with him, I find myself wanting to complain about the fact that we don't talk much. Not to blame him, just to express my feelings about the situation itself. But then I have to remind myself that while he is my best friend and the person I talk to about everything, for this time, I have to be his best friend and not burden him with the silly little things that are bothering me. And all in all, it's really not that bad. I realize how lucky I am for getting to talk to him every day, so honestly, I wouldn't ask for anything more. 
    We have decided to spend Christmas together as much as we can. So we have set up a time and we are going to do a video conversation so that he can watch the boys open their Christmas presents. It's not the same as him being here, but hopefully he will feel included and I know it will make me and the boys very happy too! Speaking of Christmas, I can't believe it is the day before Christmas Eve! Well, actually, technically it is Christmas Eve now! I haven't wrapped the kids presents or anything! In fact, I need to get more wrapping paper and stocking stuffers! Big Fail Mom! We were going to go today but I was supposed to meet the tech guy to fix my laptop at 1130. We were up until 0600 and had to get back up at 1000, then the guy didn't call! We were meeting him at Jamba Juice and he was 2 hours late! He had mentioned having another customer before us, so I assumed he was still with them. But after 2 hours I couldn't wait any longer so I called him. He didn't answer, so I left a voicemail saying I understood he was with a customer and didn't want to bother him, but I needed a timeframe so I could know if I should just wait or head home and come back when he was ready. Well he calls me back, and I gave him the perfect opening by saying I was sure he was with a customer, but he flat out told me, nope, he went home to mess around with his computer and just forgot about our appointment. He even joked about having driven right by our meeting place on his way home! I was like props on the honesty, but I would rather he have lied to me because that really made me mad. But I just played it off like it was fine. My kids were really fussy, but I don't feel bad because they had every right to be after getting up early AND waiting around for 3 hours! Anyways, the laptop is fixed and we came home and they took a 6 hour nap! I actually fell asleep for a couple hours too. So I am counting on another long night. Aiden went right to sleep but I am sure he will wake up before long. Austin is laying down watching TV in my room, so he is at least calm and I am hoping he will sleep! 
   I had a really difficult conversation with a friend tonight. She sent me an instant message asking me to call her and I could tell by the things she was saying that something was very wrong, so I called her right away. She explained that while on her computer a random pop-up had come up and she was about to close it but saw that it was a video and the image in the window was extremely disturbing. It was a child pornography video. She said the girl couldn't have been more than 8-10 and looked like she was screaming and crying for her life! So she asked me how to go about reporting it. I could feel my stomach instantly churning. I have been a victim of sexual abuse, as have a couple of other people I know, and I can't imagine how my friend felt because she has a little girl! I was mortified! I gave her the information to her local FBI department and she took steps to contact them, so I am hoping that it will be removed and they will catch the bastard that posted it! As well as any other sick person that might have been watching it! I'll tell you, there is a lot of evil in this world, but nothing gets my blood boiling more than a crime against a child. Not just sexual, but abuse of any sort. I am just so glad that she took the steps to report it. A lot of people would just close it and pretend they didn't see it, or justify not reporting it. But she is taking the right steps to let the proper people know and get something done about it! I just hope they find the guy. 
    Anyways, I am so worn out! So I am going to get some sleep hopefully! I am reading the Vampire Academy series and I can't put it down! I have been reading it for about a week and I am already halfway through book 4! So even if Austin wont sleep I have plenty of entertainment til he dozes off! I hope everyone is having a great time getting ready for Christmas!!!! 

Highlight of the Day: I secretly ordered matching bracelets for my Mother-in-Law and I about a week ago. They are silver laced with blue fabric of some sort, I cant remember what its called, and it has a patriotic ribbon charm and mine has a charm that says "Keep my Husband Safe" and hers says "Keep my Son Safe". I wanted to get one for my sister in law too, but then didnt have one :( But anyways, they got here today! I am excited about them! Mine fits perfectly and I can't wait to send her hers! She is having a rough time right now, I am sure, with the passing of her mother, so I hope I can brighten her day even just a little bit!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

1 Month and 2 Days Down! 160 Days to Go!

     Ok, so I am calling it 160 days to go. Granted, he has been gone over a month, but I am counting from the time he got in theater and I added travel days at the end as well. I know that is a really long title for each blog post, but if people are going to read this to see what my mindset was during the deployment, I want them to see what point I was at in the deployment when I have my ups and downs. Granted, it will be different for each person, but I am sure that to some extent, there is probably some sort of pattern. For instance, pretty much everyone I have talked to has said that the first 2 weeks are the hardest. And a lot of what I hear from some people is that the mid-point is a really great time because instead of counting how long their loved one has been gone, they can really start counting down the days til they get back. Also, I have heard that while the first couple months generally go by fairly quickly (the first couple weeks excluded), that the last couple seem to go very slow because you are anticipating their arrival. I don't know if this is true for everyone, but that seems to be what I hear from most people who have been through this process. So anyways, like I said, I just want people to see where my head was at during each stage of this deployment. Plus, it will give me a way to look back on it as well.
    Anyways, what a day! I took the boys to Toys'R'Us to finish up their Christmas shopping and boy was that a nightmare! But we got some great stuff :) However, then we got home and I noticed that the monitor on my laptop is broken! Don't ask me how that happened, but LCD monitors are not covered under our warranty with Dell! I am so pissed off about that! I paid $180 for accidentals on both of our laptops! If that doesn't cover the monitor then it is pretty much useless! That is probably the number one thing to get messed up with laptops! Please believe, I will be having words with someone! This laptop is only 2 1/2 months old! Not to mention I have had to call them FOUR times because the call keeps getting dropped and every time I call I end up on hold anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour! No joke! My shortest wait time thus far has been 32 minutes! It is making me so mad! They have my call back number! If the call gets dropped you would think they would have the decency to call me back instead of making me go through the whole process again and have to explain the whole problem all over again to yet another person! I am so frustrated right now. All I have to say is these people are very lucky that my husband is deployed because if he was the one they had to deal with, it would definitely get ugly. Although, as it stands, there is still a very distinct possibility of that happening! 
     Anyways, all of that aside, it was still a pretty good day. Nothing beats hanging out with my little guys, even when they are fussy in public! LOL! But they got lots of good presents! I got them both the Micky Mouse clubhouse rocking chairs that look like little recliners for toddlers! I know they will love those! Austin got his bike, which he has been asking for for quite a while, I got them a 7x7 ft bounce house for the back yard, new Mickey Mouse Clubhouse DVD's since that is Austin's new obsession, one of those wooden train tables from wal mart that has the train tracks and everything and the drawer underneath, they each got a pillowpet, I got Austin a ton of matchbox cars since he loves those things, I got them some puzzles because they both love those, and I got aiden some good toys that will help with his fine motor skills. I am probably forgetting stuff, but its pretty obvious that they made out pretty well this year :) I guess in a way I kind of feel like I have to go a little overboard this year to make up for the fact that their Daddy isn't here. Aiden still doesn't really seem to know whats going on, but Austin has really started asking when his Daddy is going to come home in the airplane and stuff like that, so I think he is starting to understand a little more. 
     Well, the boys are sleeping so I am enjoying some quiet time while I can! Well trying to. I could enjoy it a little more if I wasn't wasting it on Dell.... And if I was actually making some progress, not sitting on hold again. I have been on hold the whole time I have been making this post, so that should tell you something! LOL! So, I am going to go try to enjoy the quiet time as much as I can! LOL! Good night :)

Highlight of the Day: The boys took a bubble bath this morning and made themselves into Santa Claus with the bubbles! It was HILARIOUS! <3 I love those boys so much! What ever would my life be without them?

Thursday, December 16, 2010

3 Weeks 6 days! Only 5 months and 1 day to go!

     Wow! Tomorrow will be the 1 month mark since David left. Where has the time gone? In a way it feels like it has been much longer, but when I realized it was already a month, it kind of blew my mind! The boys and I have made quite a few changes and adjustments and we are actually doing pretty good. The first couple weeks were hard. Not just missing him, but it seemed like everything that could go wrong pretty much did. However, things seem to be going a lot better now and if I do encounter a "crisis" I don't feel as intimidated anymore. I really am gaining a lot of my independence back. I am handling everything including the finances, which is something I have not done since David and I moved in together. As much as I have always opposed the traditional view of what a marriage "should" be, it seems like we really fell into those habits anyways when we got married. David handled all of the practical stuff; working, finances, the yard work, basically all things "manly". I love my husband, but one thing that this deployment is teaching me is that I have lost a lot of myself in this marriage. I look at the person I was before we got married and who I am now, and the person I was then definitely wouldn't recognize me now. Don't get me wrong, that is good in some ways, but in other ways I realize that I have held myself back a lot by trying to live up to this image of what a wife and mother should do. I forgot that it is ok to do things for me. In fact, it is better for everyone when I do. 
      I think I have lived a lot of the last 4 years or so on autopilot. We fell into a routine and I just kind of went through the motions. Gaining this independence back has been so liberating in so many ways. I realize that by doing something for myself, like taking a time out and going to the gym 3 evenings a week instead of taking my kids to the park that day or doing dishes and laundry, doesn't make me any less of a wife and mother. If anything, it makes me better. I feel better and I am taking steps to keep myself healthy so that I can be there for my kids and I relieve a ton of pent up stress in the process! Again, I feel the need to reiterate, none of this means that I am saying my husband, marriage, or children are holding me back. That is not the case. I am the one that has been holding myself back because when I became a wife and mother, I felt like I had to spend all of my time and energy focusing on being those things. And as much as I hate this deployment, I don't think anything would have changed without it. And I am interested to see how my newfound independence fits in when my husband returns and I have to go back to being half of a marriage and half of a parenting team. I am really hoping to find ways to maintain my individuality, but still be able to dedicate the same focus to my kids and husband. In fact, I would love for him to be part of the new things I am doing, such as the working out, and the new way I am managing the finances, and definitely THE CLEANING AND DIAPERING!!!! LOL! He can DEFINITELY be part of that whenever he would like! LOL! 
    The one obstacle I am really dealing with is the housework. I am seriously considering bringing in a housekeeper, even if it is just once a month to do a deep clean and I just maintain it throughout the month. But it seems like with everything else going on, there is no time for housework, and when there is time I don't have the energy. I am hypersensitive to caffeine and energy drinks since I was pregnant with Aiden, so yes, I could drink an energy drink and that would help me get the energy to clean the house, but then I won't be able to sleep at night (as if I am sleeping much as it is) and I need the sleep way more than I need a clean house at this point! I dont get an hour or two at the end of the night for quiet time like some people do. By the time I get Austin to sleep, which is still really late because his schedule is all off from his nightmares, I am so exhausted that I pretty much fall down and pass out wherever I land, then I wake up when the kids do. I have tried waking up earlier, but then I am exhausted all day and pretty much useless, and grouchy to top it off. Since having kids, I have never had a spotless house, but it's so overwhelming right now. And it's not even that it is THAT messy or anything, this house is just so much bigger than any house we have had before and it is a lot of upkeep. On days that I do dedicate to cleaning, it still takes me about 6 hours and that is just for the downstairs! We are only upstairs to sleep so that doesn't require much work. I am just worried about how my husband would react if I told him I was thinking about hiring someone. Again, I love my husband to death, but he doesn't understand how much work goes into taking care of two toddlers, especially when I am on my own and don't have much in the way of breaks. Yes, I have a sitter over several times a week so that I can workout or do photo shoots, but that is not exactly relaxing time or downtime or whatever. And it does get very overwhelming doing everything alone. He sees it as I am home all day so I have plenty of time to do everything that I need to do. Having plenty of time is one thing, doing everything I already do and having the energy to clean on top of all of it is a whole other story! LOL! So I would definitely be open to thoughts or suggestions on this matter. This is the one thing that really has me down and stressed out. I see my house and I feel like it is a huge sign of my incompetence flashing right in my face. Yes, I have just given a million reasons why it is not done, and they are all legitimate reasons, but I still feel like I should be able to do it all and the fact that I can't makes me feel, like I said, pretty incompetent. So that is the one ongoing struggle I have really dealt with since David left and honestly that is a problem I was dealing with before David even left. Anyways, enough of my vent session on that note! LOL!
     A couple days ago was definitely the hardest day since David left. I got a voicemail from his Mother and I knew right away that something was wrong. His great Aunt is either 94 or 96 and has had several close calls. There have been times that we have gotten calls telling us not to expect her to make it through the night. So, naturally, I assumed that she had passed away. But instead, I learned that his grandmother, who was 81, passed away unexpectedly. The first thought that went through my head was his poor mother and what she must be going through, then the next thought was realizing that I was going to have to tell him. He has had a very stressful week. I could tell how bad it was because he was snapping at me for everything that I said, and he would make little snide comments about the situation that had him upset, but he was so angry about it he wouldn't even tell me what it was because he didn't want to talk about it. I eventually found out what it was, but those circumstances made it even harder to tell him. Thankfully, he took it pretty well. He was not very close with her and hasn't spent much time with her since he was a kid, but he was very concerned about his mother, understandably. But thankfully she seems to be handling everything as well as can be expected. I am worried that once all the work is done of making arrangements and she gets back home that it will hit her hard then. It's times like this that make it so hard to be so far away from family. David couldn't have gotten back, but if we were closer I could have at least gone to see her and taken the boys, and maybe time with them would have helped cheer her up. But our thoughts are definitely with her through this time. 
    Anyways, my babysitter will be here any minute so that I can go to the gym, so I am going to get off of here. And I know I said last time that I was going to try to start writing more often, then I didn't do it, but this time I really will! LOL! Especially now that I realize there are people that are actually reading it! 

Highlight of the Day: The boys and I went and got milkshakes at Burger King and took them to the beach and just sat there watching the waves :) The only thing that could have made it more perfect is if their Daddy had been there with us!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

2 Weeks Down!

   Ok, so I have totally been slacking on the blog posts! Exactly 2 weeks have gone by since David left...again. It's kind of hard to describe how things feel right now. It hasn't been as hard as I thought, and that makes me wonder why. Other friends I know who's spouses are deployed, or have been in the past tell me all about how hard its going to be, and they cry/cried a lot, and here I am, I haven't cried hardly at all. I was a mess at the airport, but have been fine since then, aside from a song or thought or something that might make me tear up a little bit. I know that I love my husband, so I don't understand why it's not harder. I know, I know, everyone deals with things in their own ways. Trust me, I have heard that one a million times, but it doesn't make me feel any better. I feel like my lack of emotion about it all says something bad about me or our marriage or something. We have gone through a lot in our marriage, but we have overcome it and we have come out on top of every bad situation we have found ourselves in, and at the end of all of it, we have stayed together. And it is because we love each other. Not out of some sense of duty or responsibility or anything like that. Its because our love and our marriage is worth fighting for. So in every situation, we have always put our marriage first. So, if our love is worth fighting that hard for, why am I not crying every day because he isn't here?
   In a way, I think a big part of it is that there is a lot less pressure on me in one way. It's a toss up, in a way. One one hand, yes, there is a lot more stress because I am doing everything on my own (including killing the icky bugs), but on the other hand, it is a little less stressful to because I don't have to live my life to someone else's standards. I don't have someone commenting on the fact that I decide to eat a pizza for dinner instead of a healthy alternative, or that I let the kids eat something messy for dinner, or walk around eating their snack instead of making them sit at the table. But at the same time, I also don't have someone to put my arms around while I fall asleep at night, or someone to cook dinner for, or someone to come home from a long day of work and change a diaper just to give me a break. Of course, I wish he was here, and maybe if I wasn't go go go all the time, it would hit me a little harder.
    Our sleep schedule is DEFINITELY a mess since he left. Austins night terrors were keeping us up all night so we have been sleeping til sometime between 11 and 1 lately. Now Aiden is getting SIX teeth in all at once, so he is up all night. I don't know how to turn it around because now that it is just me, I can't be up with them until 5, then turn around and get up at 8 to turn the schedule around, make THEM get up, and have them be that overly tired, and still function to actually take care of them. So it has turned into a vicious cycle. One of these days when I don't have anything going on, I think that I will just let the go to bed late, as normal, but I will stay up and wake them up a few hours earlier than normal, then let them nap a few hours later (which they aren't even napping on this schedule we are on now) so that they aren't stressed from being too tired. Let them sleep for about an hour, get them back up, take them to the park or something and get them good and worn out, then we all try to go to bed at 8 or 9. Because when I am up with them til 5 it is too hard for me to wake up before 11 or so. So I am going to have to just stay up. It is way easier to stay up, than to force myself to get But it will have to be on a day when I don't have anything going on, so that my lack of sleep doesn't interfere with Other than that, I just don't know what else to do. But this schedule is hard on all of us. We dont even go to playgroup anymore because it is too hard to wake up at 8 or 9. I mean, I guess technically it doesn't really matter when they are sleeping as long as they are getting the sleep. But I don't like always missing playgroup, and when 9 or 10 rolls around and they are still running around screaming, my nerves are pretty shot because it's night time, and I want them winding down so that I can start relaxing. 
    I guess the hardest part of all of this is that there is just no down time for me. So if they are up til 5, I end up awake til 6, but to get an hour of quiet time to myself. I used to put them up at 8, then I could stay up til 9 or 10 for my quiet time to relax, then go to bed, and we would all wake up nice and refreshed the next morning :) 
    Their sleep schedule being off is also throwing off the eating schedule. We are eating breakfast sometime between 11 and 1 which means "lunch" is actually at dinner time. Its all a
    Anyways, all that aside, I have had a couple of photo shoots, and I have a newborn shoot tomorrow, which I am really looking forward to, since I just got all of my new studio equipment, except one backdrop I am still waiting on. So that has been going well. I have also started going to the gym. My babysitter (who is AMAZING and a total Godsend!) is going to come over 3 times  a week so I can go to the gym. That has helped immensely. I stopped going after I moved in with David. The gym was kind of a controversial subject for us, so I just didn't go. But I had forgotten how much I loved it. I have always been a very athletic person, and just the 2 times I have gone to the gym this week have already undone 4 years of feeling like crap because I wasn't working out! So that is a habit I will definitely not be giving up again! 
    I think part of the reason that this deployment has been less hard on me that some people is that in a way it has given me my independence back. I have come to rely on David way too much. He always drives when we go places, so I don't pay attention to where they are, so I don't know how to get anywhere, so I don't go anywhere without him. He handles things like vehicle registration and base stickers and all that, so I never bothered finding out what I needed to do because he always handled it. If I wanted to schedule a photo shoot, I had to check his schedule before I could set it up so that we didn't have conflicting appointments. Now I am doing everything for myself again. I'm not depending or relying on anyone. I am thinking for myself and doing things for myself again. I have never liked relying on people or just taking a back seat and letting them take the controls, but it was a routine that we fell into pretty early in our married life, and I guess I just never really thought to question it. 
    Don't get me wrong, none of that makes me glad that he is gone. I miss him like crazy and I am counting down the days until he comes home, but I think that this deployment is going to be a real eye opener, for me at least, as to what things might need to be done differently in the future. This deployment is a reality and nothing I am going to do is going to change the fact that he isn't here, so I might as well put a positive spin on it and use this time as an opportunity to rediscover myself; to remind myself that, yes, I am a half of a whole, but I am still a whole person by myself as well. Being half of that whole does not totally define me. I am still an individual with thoughts and needs. I have spent so long playing the role of wife and mother, that I forgot about the things that made me who I am as an individual. And I firmly believe that in order to really contribute to a marriage, you have to be happy with yourself, and I haven't been for a long time. And a big part of that was when I gave up working out. I had 2 kids, and yes, I was really underweight before I had them, and based on my BMI, I am the perfect weight now, but that doesn't change the fact that when I look in the mirror, I don't see what I want to see. A diet would be pointless because I don't need to lose weight, I need to tone the muscles again to get back to the figure I want. Going back to the gym will give me that back. I think that when I start working these things out for myself, and finding out how to get a good balance between being a wife and a mother, but still being an individual, it will make a huge difference not only in my own life, but in my marriage, and as a parent as well. 
    I have always looked at single mothers with so much respect and wondered how they could do it. And this time I have been taking care of the kids by myself has given me that much more respect for them. But I have always felt like it is something that I could never do. And already this experience has shown me that if it ever came down to it, I could do it. Not that I ever have ANY intention of having to, whatsoever. My husband better live a long life and be here to watch those kids grow up, but it is just good to know that I am a good enough parent that no matter what life throws at us, I will always be able to take care of my kids and put them first. When this deployment came up, my first thought was "Why on earth did we decide to reenlist?" because when this enlistment is up, he will have been in for 11 years. It would be completely asinine to get out after you have already passed the halfway point, which means this will not be the last separation that we deal with, and probably not the longest one either. But I see now that that is ok. No matter what happens, I can take care of my kids, even if I have to do it on my own, and we will all be fine. When this deployment came up, I didn't think I would be able to do it alone. I thought that a month in I would be looking at plane tickets to go home but here we are doing fine, aside from a few minor issues like the sleep pattern. So maybe it has been easier on me because what I was envisioning and fearing was so much worse than the reality of the situation. 
    Anyways, thanks for bearing with me while I play shrink for I don't know why, but when I can't work something out in my head, if I just sit down and write it out, I seem to find the answer I am looking for, in some ways. And since I was so late on a new blog post, I figured why not let everyone else have some insight into the mind of Jessica! LOL! After all, like I said at the beginning of this blog, in a way it is meant to be a diary of sorts....except a diary that you post on the internet for the whole world to read and comment on! LOL! 
   Well, on that note, I am going to close for the night! The highlight of my day was definitely the great workout I got! I am going to try to get back to doing this daily, so hopefully I will have more to share tomorrow night! Maybe something a little less introspective (and long)....LOL!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Hell Week Day 5

    Almost through the first week! It almost seems like it has been more than a week because so much has passed. In one day, I spoke to my husband 3 different times while he was in 3 different countries. Then, the next day I spoke to him twice and he was in 2 different countries. 5 countries in 2 days...not too shabby! LOL! 
    Today was another good, but uneventful day. Again, we stayed home and didn't do much. So this will be a quick post! I am getting things in order for my upcoming photo shoots. I still have not started fully booking again. I have one this Saturday and one the next, then one I am waiting to schedule. But I am trying to do them primarily in my house for the time being. I also finished crocheting some new props, so I am looking forward to using them on my newborn shoot next week! 
   Tomorrow I think I will go ahead and make the cranberry sauce for Thursday at the Bestie's! I got the kitchen clean today, so I am feeling good about that. Hate the thought of dirtying it again! LOL! But luckily cranberry sauce is easy clean up! So is sweet potato casserole, which is the other dish I am doing. 
   Well, it is night night time. Austin is still up jabbering, but I am beyond ready to get my sleep on! David is at work right now, so of course, as soon as I get to sleep he will wake me up, but that is more than ok with me :) I don't ever like to miss an opportunity to chat with him. Thank goodness my kids like to sleep in as much as I do! LOL!

Highlight of the Day: Can't use talking to my husband as the highlight of every day, so from now on, we will know that comes first and foremost. But aside from that, Austin has started doing this thing where he tells me or Aiden or his monkey or Scout, "I'm so glad you're here". Well, today I did hit a small rough spot and wasn't feeling so great, and Austin came up and gave me a hug and said "I'm so glad you're here Mommy". I don't even know if he really understands what that means, but my heart melted nonetheless. In that moment, nothing could have brought me down! I love my kiddos so much!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Hell Week Day 4

    Phew, what a day! It was pretty long because I didn't get to really talk to David at all. We talked early this morning (like 2 or 3 type early) when he was in one of the airports, then he started messaging me again when he got to his next stop, and I talked to him for a minute, but I literally fell asleep in the middle of a message! I felt so bad because when I woke up he had already boarded his next flight, and we didn't know when we were going to be able to talk next, and here I was falling asleep! 
     Then, we got up this morning, just in time for Aiden's home visit! I had set the alarms for 8:50, 8:55, and 9:00. I turned all 3 of them off.... When the 9:00 one went off I thought "I can sleep til 9:30, Aiden's appt is at 11:30, that will give me 2 hours, and it's here at the house so it's not like we have to go anywhere!". Well, 9:30 rolled around, and I decided to sleep til 10, 10 rolled around and I decided to sleep til 10:30, 10:30 rolled around and the kids were still sleeping, so I decided on 11! Only I shot straight up out of bed at about 10:45 because I realized I had forgotten to call the gate to get them in! Well, Hickam is stupid and doesn't let the spouses call, and I couldn't exactly get my husband to call! So, I called the lady and luckily she was already on base, and was with a spouse who was able to call her husband and have him get the other lady on, so it worked out! Near disaster averted! So I got up, got the boys ready and fed, picked up a little bit, and was ready just in time for her to get here.
    Today was more of a goal setting appointment. They had finished the eval and wanted to discuss the results with me, as well as set our goals for the next 6 months. His levels ranged from 10-16 months. So we prioritized the goals based on what we thought was more important. Over the next 30 days, the teacher will go over the evaluation results and the goals we set today, then she will comet to the house twice a week for the next 6 months, unless we can get Aiden caught up before then. In a way I am a little relieved to have help from this program. Obviously this is my first time raising kids, and my family is all on the mainland, so it will be nice to have someone give me ideas on how I can work with the boys on this stuff. And it will benefit our future children as well, because I will have more tools to use.
    About halfway through our appointment, there was a knock at the door and it was the UPS man! He was here to deliver my new 32 gig Ipod Touch 4g, which is my Christmas present from my wonderful husband! Engraved with the words "Merry Christmas 2010!!!!!! Love David, Austin and Aiden"! I love it because it has 2 cameras! One in the front and one in the back! And it also does HD video and video chat! In fact, I used it to make a video for David of me and the kids telling him we love him! I have a feeling that we will definitely get our moneys worth out of it and then some!
    Once the appointment was done, Aiden went up for nap and Austin played in the playroom and watched tv. I have also been waiting on a bracelet I had made. It is blue paracord and has a dog tag on it and I had it engraved with "Proudly supporting my Airman so he can support our country", and it came with a free paracord keychain, and I opted for the yellow Support the troops ribbon. Well, I have been watching the tracking and it said it was delivered today. So I go check the mail and nothing!!!! So I call the post office, and no one answers. So I just kept hitting redial til I got an answer! LOL! Someone hated me! But I didnt want to take a chance on not getting it, and it takes a while to get it made, so I didn't want to pay for and wait on another one. Well when I finally got through to someone we realized it had been delivered to my old address. She offered to have someone retrieve it and get it to me in the next day or 2, but I am impatient, so I went to the old house, knocked on the door, introduced myself, and she went and checked the mail and got it for me :) So I got both things I was waiting for in 1 day! How cool is that? And the bracelet wasn't supposed to be delivered til tomorrow and FedEx website said my Ipod wasn't going to get here til Wednesday! So I really lucked out! 
     After that, the boys and I ran some errands, came home for dinner, and I played with my ipod while they played with their toys :) About halfway through dinner I heard the IM sound on my laptop! And sure enough, it was my husband!!!! I have been talking to him on and off for the past few hours. He is in a tent right now, and he is miserable because he got stuck with a top bunk. He said its like 90 degrees up there, then like 70 on the bottom. He cannot stand to sleep if it is even the least bit warm. If our house gets over 70 at night he can't sleep. It has to be at 68 or 69. So looks like the first care package better have a fan in it for him! LOL!
     Well, it is 2:30 and the boys are sound asleep and David is offline at the moment, but he will be back on soon, so I am going to try to catch a little sleep before he gets back on. Since we are 13 hours apart, it is the middle of the day there, so I am sure we will be talking throughout the night, so I will just have to sleep in between. His wifi is in a specific tent, so if he needs to do anything, he has to leave the area with the internet, so thats why it comes in spurts. Anyways, today has been an awesome day, under the circumstances, so I am going to go to sleep and hope tomorrow goes just as well! Good night!

Highlight of the Day: Definitely has to be every time I got to talk to my husband! I miss him like crazy, and this deployment will not be easy, but getting to talk to him helps so very much. I am so glad that we live in a time that we have the technology to keep in touch with our loved ones, without having to wait forever for letters to get there! 


Monday, November 22, 2010

Hell Week Day 3

    Another uneventful day hanging out at home with my boys :) I did receive some very bad news about someone in my family that I love very much, but I am not going to get into that. It is kind of a family matter, and it is pretty painful for everyone involved. So, suffice it to say, that has had me in a little bit of a funk. But other than that, we pretty much just lounged around today. I think that will probably be a lot of what the next 6 months will look like. I am sure we will get out and do things, but loading up 2 kids that are both still so young and trying to go places isn't always an easy job by yourself, so we will probably spend a lot of time at home. We need to get back into the swing of going to playgroups. It is 11 and I got both boys down and Austin seems like he is actually going to go to sleep, so I am hoping he will get into a good sleep and we won't have any nightmares tonight. It got so bad at one point last night, he was completely inconsolable. Even when I picked him up and rocked him he was screaming. It took a long time to get him back to sleep. Then he woke up again and finally I just had to pull him into bed with me and he continued to toss and turn. I think it was 7 or 8 before we actually got to sleep. So it was a very rough night. 
    Tomorrow we have Aiden's next home visit. This is the part where we will set up a game plan, but I will have a lot of new developments to report when they get here. He is learning new words and seems to be catching up, so I really think he is just kind of going at his own pace. I still need to get him in for the hearing test at Tripler, but the thought of it already has me Tripler is not my favorite place in the world. 
    I have been finishing more and more crochet props, so I am hoping to start getting some of those sold soon and I booked a photo shoot for next Saturday. I am scheduling a few more outdoor sessions with people I had already had plans to do shoots for, but beyond that, I am going to try to start doing mostly indoor shoots. I have referred some of them to other photographers to try to avoid having to leave the boys too much. They both have such bad separation anxiety going on already. Austin with his nightmares, and Aiden who screams bloody murder and tries to claw out the screen door when I am taking out the trash.
    I spent a lot of the day looking up care package ideas for David's packages, and also stuff that I can do for my adopted soldier, so I found some things that I am dying to get started on! So I will probably start those in the next day or two :)
    Like I said, though, other than that not too much going on. I got to spend some time talking to David but I don't foresee too much time to talk in the near future, but we will see what happens. The truth is, neither of us have any clue what to expect, but not talking to him will be hard. But working on the items for his care package will make me feel closer to him, and I wear his dog tags 24/7 and that helps too because I know he is wearing his other set.
    Well, I am going to take advantage of the peace and quiet and catch some sleep! Austin is snoring away and I am hoping it will last so goodnight!!!

Highlight of the Day: The time that I got to chat with my hubby :) We had the video chat up for a few hours this morning and it was nice :)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Hell Week Day 2

    I am happy to say, I don't think Hell Week will apply as much this time around. Today was the first full day without David and it has been easier than last time. Granted, a big part of that is that he was in a hotel so we were on video chat almost all day. The hard part will start when we are not in as close contact. The boys are still doing fine, but Austin has resumed the habit of sleeping in the playpen in my room. Part of me knows that it is a bad idea to continue the habit, but the other part of me is being selfish because having him in here comforts me too. Maybe tomorrow night I will put him back in his room, but for tonight, I am glad he is keeping me company, even if he is driving me nuts! LOL! 
    We had an uneventful day. We just sat at home. The boys played and I crocheted. They have started little wrestling matches but it is funny because they don't wrestle aggressively, they do this weird hug wrestle! They crack me up! 
    Anyways, since today was so uneventful I am going to keep this post short! 

Highlight of the Day: This might seem silly but David and I were chatting and he said to me "I love you so much and I can't wait to come home!" I kid you not, I printscreened it and saved it! My husband will never be accused of being emotional. He is a very logical minded person and does not really see a need for feelings and Anyone who knows me knows that I thrive on emotion. I have a strong love for my friends and family and that passion is the driving force in my life. Whereas his is his success and being a provider for his family. I think in a way he has the mindset that it is the job of the wife/mother to be the loving and nurturing person in a family, and it is the man's job to go to work and make a living to put a roof over their heads and food on the table, and the two "duties" should be kept separate. So he does not express emotion....well....ever really. So those simple words, that might not be any big deal to someone else, were huge for me. I can honestly say I do not ever remember him saying that, or anything even close to that, to me. In fact, at the beginning of our relationship I would just get a casual "love ya lots" or when we chat its a luv u 2. He tells me he loves me a lot, but usually it is in response to me saying it to him or when we are getting off the phone, so it feels more like an automated response because it is what you are supposed to say when someone says it or when you get off the phone. Don't get me wrong, I know that he loves me, I don't doubt that just because he doesn't throw himself on a sword to profess his love to me. I know that he loves me. But for him to say what he said, it just proves how intensely he was feeling when he said it, and that is why it was so important and touching to me. It is way outside of his comfort zone to show emotion, so that was huge. I can honestly say that I will never forget that because it meant so much to me. (Luckily he never reads my blog cuz he would probably kill me for saying all that...LOL!) Anyways, like I said, it may seem insignificant to some people but it was incredibly touching for me and it definitely was the highlight of my day!

I am off to bed!!! Good night!!!   

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Hell Week Day 1

    I have decided to dub this first week as "Hell Week" because in my experience the first week is always the hardest. Granted, this is our first deployment, but not our first separation. Not even close. And the first night is always pure torture, then the first week is the hardest. But during that week, you find your "groove" so to speak. You get into a routine and it makes the next weeks easier and easier. This may not be true for everyone, but this is how it has always been for me.
   Rewind 1 week and 1 day. Last Thursday my husband returned home. I will never forget Austin's face when he saw his Daddy! I let him out of the stroller and we stood together waiting and watching the doors. I told Austin I had a surprise for him, but that boy has a mind like a steel trap. As soon as we pulled into the airport he said "Yay! Go see Daddy!" He knew exactly where we were. Anyways, so we sat there and waited for what felt like an eternity. I spotted David first. It took Austin a minute of me pointing because there were so many people around, but the second he spotted him, there would have been no stopping him if I had tried! LOL! He was off like a light running across the airport screaming "Daddy Daddy Daddy!!!!!" That is one of those moments in a parents life where the whole world stands still and they can just watch their child experience pure joy! My whole chest tightened up and it was one of the happiest moments in my life to see my amazing little boy light up the way he did! From that moment on, when I saw David again, it was like he never even left. The first week was so long and hard, but the next 3 weeks literally flew by right before my eyes. Like I said, it was just like he never left. He had to work Friday, so we didn't really do much, but Saturday we celebrated our Thanksgiving. I cooked Friday night and most of Saturday and I was really happy with how it turned out! I made my first turkey, which, in my opinion, came out amazing!!! We also had mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, devilled eggs, cheddar biscuits (like the ones at Red Lobster), homemade cranberry sauce, green bean casserole, banana pudding, and lemon meringue pie. Everything made from scratch. Oh and stuffing, but that was not from scratch. It came out of a box, but thanks to an awesome friend we shared Thanksgiving with last year, I had a recipe for stuffing that used boxed stuffing, but added ingredients like apple juice and chunks of apples and cranberries. It was a hit so thanks Grace!!!! I was really happy with how it all came out. But it was DEFINITELY a lot of food! LOL! We ate leftovers the rest of the week David was home, with the exception of last night, when I made a nice romantic dinner for David and I and we ate out one night.
     The rest of his time home was pretty uneventful though, barring the disaster with his work, but I will get to that later! Anyways, Sunday we went to the beach for a little while. Then, either Tuesday or Wednesday night (I know, my memory definitely isn't what it used to be!), we went to the mall to get the recordable books from Hallmark. We got one about not being scared of anything at bedtime, then one all about "I love you". The boys LOVE them! Then we had and awesome meal at Bubba Gump's Shrimp! I had steak with loaded potatoes, salad, clam chowder and peel and eat shrimp. David had some sort of fish, and the boys pretty much just wanted stawberries and french fries! LOL! Although Aiden was perfectly happy eating anything I would feed him off of my plate! LOL! David ended up eating most of my steak and shrimp! Ha ha ha! It was a lot of fun. 
     Now back to the disaster. So David was supposed to leave yesterday, and believe me, I am so glad we got one extra day with him, but I think I aged about 10 years in those 2 days! Wednesday rolled around and he had no orders, no plane tickets, and half the stuff he needed to get done wasn't. So when Thursday came we didn't know if he was leaving or staying. We spent the whole day on the edge of our seat waiting for the phone to ring. And everytime it did we jumped! LOL! Well, his flight was supposed to leave at 5 something I think, and at 3 or so, David finally called in and found out he wasn't leaving. Well, we were in the same boat today. Not sure if his orders would come through and he would leave today or if they wouldn't and he would get to be here for the weekend. It was a very stressful time waiting to find out. But finally, his orders did come through. And boy was it a mess! He finally found out in the afternoon, then he had to final outprocess from the base at 3, which meant we didn't pick up his weapon until 4. Oh and did I mention his flight was scheduled to leave at 6? So we got to the airport at 4:30 or so. Had to go through the agriculture check line, so they could scan his bags, then we had to go do the self check in, then we had to stand in another line to turn in his bags. They tell us that he is only authorized 2 bags and his weapon, even though one bag was just gear. He was specifically told 3 bags and his weapon, so they charged him $200 for the 3rd bag because there was no way he could get it down to 2. Then he had to go back to the security people so they could inspect his weapon case. By the time this was all done we did not have time to go to the USO to get me a gate pass. So we stood in the line security and he hugged me and of course, I started bawling on his shoulder. I had been struggling the whole time. I can't explain it, but walking through the airport with him in uniform, everyone pretty much knew what was happening, so there were people pointing at us and giving us the sympathetic look, and I know they were trying to be comforting, but in all honesty, it just made it that much harder. And I finally just started crying. Anyways, one of the security people told us we could go to the USO, but we explained that we did not have time to do that AND get through security. So she said if we got the pass she would let us go through the Gold Lane. Luckily the USO office was directly below security so we went down a floor and we were there! They had us the paper in about 2 minutes. We got back up there, waited in the Gold Lane, then found out that we could not use that paper, we still had to go get a separate gate pass. At this point it was 5:15 and we were cutting it close, so David felt we needed to spend the time that we had together saying our goodbye's rather than running around the airport, then probably running out of time and having to rush to say goodbye in 2 seconds. I, of course, being the stubborn person I am, was not willing to accept that. If there was a chance that I could get that extra time with him, I was going to try. So we argued about it a little bit and I finally told him to give me 10 minutes. Spend the time with the boys and if I did not get the gate pass and my stubbornness caused me to lose that time with him, it was my own damn fault. He reluctantly agreed.
     I LITERALLY RAN through the airport. People looked at me like I was crazy, but I didn't care. I was coming up from behind the airline desks, so I didn't even go stand in line. I found an empty counter went straight to it, explained the situation, and she gave me a gate pass! I ran back and made it all in about 5 minutes! So we went through the Gold Lane, went to the gate (which was ridiculously full!) checked David in, then found out the plane was late anyways! It was now not scheduled to leave until 6:35. So we went and grabbed some Burger King. We got back and ate, then waited for them to start boarding. We sat down and he held me, and again, I broke down. We waited until everyone was boarded, then we made our way to the actual gate. We stood there and held eachother for a long time while I bawled like a baby. Then he said goodbye to the boys, which made me cry that much harder. But the absolute worst part was that when he walked away, as he got to the end of the hall and turned around for one last wave and to blow a kiss, Austin tried to get out of the stroller and was begging him for one more hug. I felt my heart rip into little tiny pieces in that moment. It was devastating. But after that we went over to the window and watched the planes, which fascinated him. We waited until the plane took off, then we left. Naturally, since I was such a wreck when we got to the airport I didn't even pay attention to which deck we parked in or what level! So we had to walk around a while to find the van, but luckily I picked the right deck the first time! I just had to walk the floors til I found it.
    It's weird to say this but I think this time the transition will be easier than last time. That isn't to say that we will miss him any less, but he was gone for a month and we got into a routine. He was only back for a week, so I already see us settling back into the routine we started when he left the first time. In a weird way, it feels normal that it is just the 3 of us because we got used to it when he left the first time. I don't know if it will be any different for the kids, but for me it is not as hard as last time. The airport was the hardest part. Just letting go and saying goodbye. At the risk of sounding dramatic, it was hard to let him just walk away and get on the plane knowing that he is going to a dangerous place and that if one wrong move is made, that could be the last time I would see him. Like I said, I know that sounds dramatic, and he will probably be just fine, but there are many women that have put their husbands on a plane and expected to see them again in 6 months, and he doesn't come home. I would rather understand that there is a possibility that could happen and be that much more thankful when he comes home safe and sound, then the alternative, where I do not let myself even consider that possibility and it happens and I had not even tried to prepare myself. Granted, no one can really prepare themselves, but at least I can know that I understood the weight of that moment and did not take it for granted. 
     Well, his first flight landed a while ago, so I am going to go talk to my husband!

Highlight of the Day: It is very hard to think of a highlight on a day like today, but no matter how bad your day is, there is always something good you can pick out of it! So I would have to say the highlight of my day was definitely waking up to the sight of my husbands face one last time! And even if he isn't here now, I am still incredibly lucky to have a husband that I can be so proud of! He is very brave and is making a lot of sacrifices to go defend our country and as much as it hurts to miss him, my heart is full of pride for the man I am lucky enough to call my husband!


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Day 25: Our Last Night!!!

     Another bittersweet night. This is the last night before David gets home and I am going nuts with excitement knowing my husband will be home tomorrow. But my heart is breaking at the same time because I know this time next week will be our last night together for a very long time. I feel a lump in my throat, a knot in my stomach and tears forming in my eyes just thinking about it. I thought I was prepared for this, but the closer it gets the more terrified and heartbroken I become. I don't know how some women do this over and over again. I feel like my heart is being ripped right out of my chest just thinking about it. I have such a wide range of emotions going through me. Excitement to see him, sadness knowing that he will only be here a few days. Long enough for me and the boys to get used to him being home then he will just be gone again. Fear at the prospect of what could happen to him. I hate this with every fiber of my being, but at the same time I know that this is something he has to do and I am very proud of him. It is hard to sort it all out when there are so many feelings all at once. I didn't cry when he left the first time, perhaps because I knew it would only be for a short time, but if I barely even think about it now I can't contain the tears. I thought I was ready and I am realizing more and  more that there is no possible way to be ready. No amount of mental preparation will take away the pain and the fear. But my goal is to never let him see any of that. When he is home I am going to smile and be happy to have him  here and I am not going to waste a single minute or take it for granted. I can cry when he is gone, when he doesn't have to see it and worrying about me does not have to add to the burdens he is already having to bear. Even now, just writing this, I can't stop crying. I am supposed to be happy because he is coming home, and don't get me wrong, I am so happy, but the sooner he gets here the sooner he leaves. And the times you want to cherish the most are always the ones that go by the fastest, so I know this next week will be a complete whirlwind and before I know it he will be gone again and I won't even know where the time went. 
    Anyways, tomorrow is a happy day and I am going to do by best to not let it be clouded by what is to come. It's not even 11 and Aiden is asleep and Austin seems pretty tired so I am going to wrap this up and call it a night. As always, I am exhausted, and if you couldn't tell, it is really beginning to get the better of me! So I am going to try to get some sleep so I can be good and rested when I see my husband! I think it is pretty obvious what the highlight of the whole next week is going to be! So on that note, good night!!!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Day 24

     What a fun day! We pretty much just hung out for the first part of the day, but then the bestie and her daughter came over for a sleepover so that has been fun! We had pizza and watched kids movies and crocheted and just had some fun girl time. Austin had a rough time going to sleep but it is 2 and I am in bed now so that is better than we have been doing! I just have to make it through another day and a half then my wonderful husband will be home! I can't wait to see him! Tomorrow might be ok but Thursday will probably be the longest day of my life! LOL! I will be ready to go to the airport 6 hours before it is even time to pick him up, then I will end up sitting around twiddling my thumbs. . .lol! Well, I am going to head to bed! Goodnight!

Highlight of the Day: Girl time with the bestie <3

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Day 23

     Oh Boy am I in pain! After a long and exhausting day of cleaning, my house is finished! I am in a lot of pain but at least the house will be clean when the hubby gets home. I still need to do some laundry and I didn't do the floors, but I don't care! LOL! I busted my butt and it's way better than it was when he left. We had unpacked about 20 boxes but hadn't put all the stuff away, so there was stuff EVERYWHERE! It wasn't any worse than when he left, but it hadn't gotten a whole lot better either. But now it is all picked up so I am relieved. But I am going to keep this short. I am in a lot of pain so I took a dose of nyquil and I am calling it a night. Good night!!

Highlight of the day: Definitely has to be the fact that my house is clean!! LOL!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Day 22

     Aaaahhhh! Only a few more days! I am getting so excited! I miss that man like crazy! I can't wait to see the boys face when they see their Daddy! Well, today was another uneventful day. Tomorrow that will not be the case. I have a friend coming over to watch the boys so I can clean, clean, clean! Whenever David goes somewhere I always have a cleaning day before he comes home to make sure he comes home to a clean house. I am hoping we will wake up for playgroup too, but Austin is not going down without a fight tonight. Anyways, as always, I am exhausted! So I am going to get off here, finish up a movie I am watching then hopefully pass out!!!!!

Highlight of the day: I finished up the photos from the newborn shoot I did a few days ago and I am so happy with how they came out!!!!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Day 21

     Exactly 3 weeks have gone by, and in just a few more nights my husband will be laying here in my arms! I can't believe it! I am really starting to get excited! I have a bunch of things I want to get done before he gets home! But on the schedule I am keeping it seems hard to get anything done. Austin has been in bed for about 3 hours. He did wake up at one point but I laid with him for a while and he was ok. So far he has stayed in his room tonight! Hopefully it will stay that way! But now my schedule is all turned around too, plus I had edits I needed to get done so I am up late, yet again. But at least its not as late as it has been recently! I really didn't have too much happen today, so this is going to be another quick one. I am just excited for the next few days to get done and over with so I can see my husband again, even if it is only for a short time. I am ready to have him home! Well, I am going to get some sleep now! Goodnight!

Highlight of the day: I put the boys up for nap and it was quiet for a while, but then I heard Aiden upstairs saying hi and I couldn't figure out why. So I headed up the stairs and imagine my surprise when I see that Austin had climbed over his babygate, opened Aiden's door, which had been shut, pulled up one of the little chairs from the little play table in Aiden's room, climed into the crib and was laying down while Aiden sat up and played! LOL!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Day 20

      20 days...that seems like it should be a milestone or something. It's a nice round number. With as quickly as things have been going lately, I can't believe it has already been 20 days. That first week felt like a month, but the 2 weeks since have felt like just a few days. I just keep holding out hope that that is how the actual deployment will go. It is almost 4:30 and I still have not slept yet. This schedule is killer! However, I got a bunch of edits done from today's newborn shoot, which was exciting. Other than that, today has been pretty uneventful. I have liked the slower pace of everything. I feel a lot less overwhelmed. Please believe I still have my hands full with the kids and housework and stuff, but that is not as overwhelming as when I was in school and doing a couple shoots a week. So, the slower pace is starting to pay off. We don't have anything on the agenda for the next 2 days which I am really happy about. It will be nice to just sit back and work on the pics, and relax, as much as one can relax with 2 toddlers. I do have a few errands I probably need to go ahead and take care of, so maybe I will get the kids out of the house for a while and go do some running around. But nothing has to be set in stone, which is nice. 
    Well it is way past my bedtime, yet again, and it is a struggle to keep my eyes open at this point, let alone keep my fingers moving to type! So I am going to sleep! Good night!

Highlight of the day: My bestie stopped by and it was great to see her, and I had a blast doing the newborn photos! It was especially nice because we did it at my house so I didn't have to lug all of my equipment around! I think I might start sticking with those for the time being, aside from the family shoots that I already committed to.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Day 19

      Wow! I can't believe that this time next week my husband will be home lying in bed with me! I can't wait! Although, we found out today that this trip will be even more bittersweet than we thought. We were planning on having 2 weeks together, but plans have changed and now, by this time in 2 weeks he will be gone for the long haul. We were counting on him having a whole week of leave, then another week where he would be working, but we would still have evenings. And we were going to have Thanksgiving. Now we get none of it. No leave, no Thanksgiving, not even a full week. I cried when he told me. It broke my heart. I know to some that may sound stupid, what is a few extra days right? But I think it would have made a huge difference. A whole week of no work or anything, just good quality family time. Now we won't have that. We are still going to do Thanksgiving while he is home though, so at least it will seem like we got to have it together. And do some of the christmas decorating. At least putting up the tree if nothing else. I will be grateful for whatever time that we have together, but this will be a lot harder, to only get him for a few days.
     Anyways, here it is 1:30 in the morning and my oldest son is literally hanging upside down from the side of the playpen. He is inside of it, but he has his legs hanging over the edge and he is just hanging upside down. In other words, he is not asleep. Ergo, neither am I. We had a small disaster because we couldn't find his monkey, and he refuses to sleep without it! But after a while of going through every room over and over again we finally found it! Thank goodness, because if we hadn't I definitely would not get any sleep! Although right now he is singing "Wooo hoooo! And tonight's gonna be a good good night!" So I don't know if sleep is anywhere in my near future anyways.
     I got more edits done today and I have a newborn shoot tomorrow. I have a few family photo shoots that I had already committed too before David left, but I might just stop doing the outdoor ones while David is gone and stick to indoor shoots like newborn or maternity. That way I am not spending as much in child care and I don't have to leave the kids. I don't know for sure yet, we will just see how things play out. I just don't want to bite off more than I can chew. I have my hands full enough with my household duties as it! 
     I am exhausted, and Austin is at least quieting down a little bit so maybe if I turn off the tv I can get him to go to sleep! Goodnight!!!

Highlight of the Day: I was trying to feed Austin and asked him if he wanted a bite and he said "No Mommy, I'm a robot!" LOL! I have no clue where he even got that from but I about died laughing!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Day 18

    Down to about 7 days until my husband is home! I am so excited and so amazed at how quickly the last 2 weeks seem to have passed. The first week was pure torture, but the last two, and especially this one seems to be flying right on by. I feel bad because we skipped playgroup for the first time this morning. Austin had a very rough night last night so we were up pretty late. When my alarm went of this morning, I looked over at him sleeping and I just didn't have the heart to wake him. Besides, on days that he is super tired at playgroup, it he ends up being fussy and then it is no fun for anyone. So, while I missed having that time today, it was probably for the best.
    Other than that, I had a dr appt at Tripler today, for the second day in a row, and both days I have found parking spots immediately, which was nice. Of course, I had to park at the very bottom of the parking lot, but I would rather walk a little ways than drive around for 20 minutes looking for a better spot. And after my 4th time to this particular dr, I can finally say I found my way without getting lost or needing directions! I never thought I would see the day that would happen! Of course, then finding the pharmacy was a whole different story! LOL! 
    The past couple of days David and I have started really talking about some things. One thing that we know needs work in our marriage is our communication. We communicate and interpret things in very different ways and sometimes it causes us to butt heads. We have found that to be particularly challenging this separation. When he has gone places in the past, we have always been very in sync and our communication was spot on, in fact, at times, it was better than it is when we are standing face to face. I don't know what has been different this time, but this deployment will be the longest separation we have faced, aside from when we first got married. Communication is going to be key in making this as smooth as possible for both of us. When emails and phone calls are the only connection that you have to the love of your life, the last thing you want to do is spend the time on the phone or internet bickering about stupid things that really don't even matter in the grand scheme of things. So we have made the decision to work on our communication skills together to make sure that we both feel like we can approach the other and know that we will be heard and respected. 
     We faced our first real step in that today and I was very proud and relieved that we did. I needed to talk to him about something but was afraid to because I was worried about how he would react. I knew it was a controversial issue for us, and I was worried it would set him off and start a fight. So I began the conversation by explaining that I did not want to fight and I was not trying to be argumentative and that if we were going to start learning to communicate now was the time. I explained that he may not necessarily like what I have to say, but part of good communication in a marriage is listening and respecting your partner even if you don't agree. All that being said, he agreed to hear me out, so I said what I needed to say, he listened until I was finished and responded in a calm manner. We did disagree, and we did argue in the sense that I said something, he countered it, I countered that, and so on. But neither of us raised our voices or got upset, we were able to go all the way through the conversation without either of us feeling like we were not being heard or we were being disrespected. And overall it was a HUGE step in the right direction. For the first time in a long time I did not feel like he just tuned me out as soon as I started to say something he didn't like. And hopefully he felt that I respected his side as well. Now if we can just continue that in that direction in the future! For any of you that have been through a deployment or long separation, any advice on how to keep good communication between us would be greatly appreciated! 
     Anyways, that was about it for today. Tomorrow we don't really have anything going on, but yet again, Austin and I are getting to bed late so I am sure we will end up sleeping in again. I have to find a way to get us back on a good schedule! The highlight of my day was definitely that conversation with David. For the first time in a long time I really felt like he was listening to me and respecting me as an equal, not looking down on me in any way, and that meant a lot to me. I hope that he knows that, and I hope that we can continue to improve our communication because 90% of our fights, if not all of them, could probably be contributed to lack of communication, or misunderstandings due to poor communication or the difference in our methods of communication. So once we are on the same page with that, I can almost guarantee it will eliminate most of the problems we have, because beyond that, we have an amazing relationship! Well, I am going to go make Austin lay down because he keeps getting up and playing! Wish me luck because I am fairly certain that I still have a long night ahead of me! Goodnight!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Day 17

     Today was pretty uneventful and I am exhausted so this is going to be a short one. Not too much happened until this evening when Austin somehow hurt his foot. I was changing Aiden's diaper so I have no clue what happened, but he was walking on it fine afterwards so I wasn't too worried. But he woke up in the middle of the night, which he usually does these days anyways, and was complaining that his foot hurt. He cried for a few hours on and off, but wanted to be in my lap the whole time so we watched some tv and he cried on and off and now I am making an attempt to go to bed. I am letting him sleep in my room so I can keep an eye on him though. 
      Friends of ours had their baby today which is exciting! We were both pregnant with our first children when we met. She was at the end of her pregnancy and I was just beginning mine. She was actually the first person, outside of family and hospital staff, to see Austin! We called her as soon as we got home and she came over! So it is crazy to think that they have 2 kids now! They had a little boy, which I know will be so exciting for them! Their oldest is a girl, so I am sure they will love having one of each.
       Other than that, nothing else really happened today. Tomorrow we have playgroup and I have a dr appt and we need to do a grocery trip at some point, but I have been putting it off. The highlight of my day is that David and I had a pretty serious talk about somethings and I am looking forward to seeing if anything comes of it :) Other than that, I am exhausted so I am going to hit the hay! Good night!