Searching For Direction

This is something that’s been bouncing around for awhile, and I know it seems a big disjointed.  It feels connected to me, so I’m going to do my best at bringing it all together.

I feel like I’m in a period of transition in my life.  I can’t quite tell if I’m wanting change rather than actually experiencing it or maybe it’s mental change.  I don’t know, but it seems like ever since DH got home something has shifted.  There was the obvious baby event, and even though it didn’t work out, it made me rethink things.  It seems like it started something that didn’t exactly follow through.  Even though it freaked me out to the millionth power at the time, I think we must have been more ready for it than we thought.  I’ve been majorly unsuccessful with shutting off mommy brain, which I felt important to do before we brought up the subject again.  I didn’t want to do something just because I was sad about how it all turned out.  Maybe you can’t ever turn it off, but I don’t want to sort out what my future looks like around something that doesn’t exist.

Besides that, we’re established here.  For the first time we’re not moving or waiting to move or existing in some temporary limbo.  It feels wonderful but new.  We’re in a place where we can make some kind of plans (as much as the Army allows for that), and I don’t even know what I want do to.  I want to travel and see the region.  I want to decorate and buy furniture.  I want to make friends and have bbq’s in the backyard.  I’m not sure how to get to that place though.

Part of the big hurdle is finding any sort of time to do that.  My work schedule is unpredictable at best.  I’m working a lot of weekends right now, which obviously limits how and when DH and I can get out and about.  I’m so very ready for a career rather than a job…  But that’s nothing I haven’t already said over and over again.

I don’t exactly know what I’m looking for.  I feel like something’s different.  I’ve always self-labeled myself as a planner and oganizer, so this feeling is causing me a lot of anxiety.  I feel like my plans are getting thrown out and either the possiblity of the unknown or the lack of direction is causing me to fret.  Sometimes I really miss therapy and it helped me sort stuff like this out.


I Will Never Repeat This Again

I think maybe this deployment might have been a good thing.  The best thing.

Millions of mil spouses around the world just dropped what they were doing, mouths hanging open, wishing they could smack some sense into me.

I know…that same part of me is screaming about how insane I am and will never understand what I’m about to say.

In some ways, I have never been happier than these past months.  Knowing that the buck stops with me, that if an emergency arises I am the only person capable of fixing it, has sort of helped my anxiety.  There is no other option to worry about.  I have to step up and take care of it.  And there’s a lot to take care of!  It’s kept me fairly busy, which limits my worry time.  Don’t get me wrong, I still worry and plan all the time but much less than before.  There’s only so much I can do.  I’ve accepted that, which helps a lot too.  I can let somethings go, and it feels like there’s no one around to plan or worry for…if that makes any sense.

I planned this deployment so far in advance, that I’ve kept myself very busy and focused on the next task.  I’m doing things I’ve never done before because I have myself focused on this goal of surviving aloneness.  I’d like to be able to do things like this in the future for me because I enjoy them and not necessarily for a deployment or for DH.  That’s a big distinction for me, but I’m ok with it being a goal and not achieved yet.

I don’t think I could have accomplished these things with DH here.  I needed a catalyst.  I miss him terribly.  I would choose his company over everything else in the whole world, which obviously shows.  I have not made as much progress as I could have because I loved our relationship.  I wanted to rely on him.  I wanted to do everything with him because I knew that our time was limited.  It might have felt great at the time, but it postponed and stunted me mentally.  This time apart has allowed me to grow while maintaining the relationship I treasure.  In that respect, I am incredibly lucky because not many people get that opportunity.

I feel truly happy for the first time in a long time.  Happy without a shadow in the background.  Happy without a worry that any minute the happiness would turn into a pumpkin at midnight.

I liken to a jar in the cupboard.  When I was deep in depression, the jar was the only option I had to choose.  I reached for it every time because it was the only thing there.  Then I started getting better and I had one depression jar and maybe two or three others.  I had to consciously avoid grabbing for that bad jar.  Sometimes I could and other times I couldn’t.  It was always there right in front, and I had to try hard to reach around it for something else.  Now that jar’s still there, but it’s way in the back.  I have a whole cupboard full of other stuff blocking it.  I have options, way better options, and I can safely reach into the cupboard without worrying about accidentally grabbing the bad jar.  Depending on the day it might gravitate more to the front, but I don’t feel like it’s going to take over.  It’s an awesome feeling to finally get to that point, but I also feel like I need to actively keep my cupboard full of good choices so that one jar doesn’t become the only option again.

Don’t misunderstand me though, it’s incredibly hard.  Being alone everyday is hard.  Managing a house, job, groceries, yard, dog, and work is hard.  Always thinking up ways to keep up DH’s moral (and my own) is hard.  If there was any other way to accomplish this, I would have done it in a heartbeat.  I fear a whole other kind of depression when the stress of being a family of one gets to be too much.  But I’m doing  it now.  I’m functioning, living, enjoying NOW.  That is freaking amazing, and I am so proud of myself. 

As always, I have a small reservation.  Can I only be this happy without DH around?  Does the nature of our relationship suck all the good jars out of my cupboard?  I don’t know the answer for sure.  I hope not.  I hope that I have used this time to learn how to do this on my own.  I hope that DH and I can adjust our relationship, like we’ve done before, to allow for my personal growth.  I know that he is proud of me.  I know that he has wanted this for me for a long, long time.  I just can’t help but feel that I don’t want this deployment to end.

…I will never say that again.

Feeling Unsettled As I Settle In

So we’re settling in.  The furniture is ordered even if it’s not here.  A washer and dryer will show up someday.  My kitchen cabinet doors won’t be missing forever.  All my stuff is under one roof.  DH has in processed even if he isn’t officially assigned to a unit quite yet.  My moving in and adjusting to a new location ball has more than officially begun rolling.  It’s coasting nicely down the hill on its own power at this point.  But I’m feeling like that might be part of the problem.  It’s out of my hands at this point.  Life is moving forward at a brisk pace, but I’m still feeling unsettled and disjointed.  I’m not keeping up.

There are so many little things cluttering up my to do list that I’m feeling overwhelmed at the jumbled mess it’s become.  I really need to sweep and mop all the floors.  The repair guys and movers tracked in so much dirt over the first few days.  My back porch was missing a screen until a few days ago so the leaves and dust piles have taken over.  I want to give it a cursory mopping before the dog gets here and tracks it back into the house.  My kitchen counters have become a catch-all for everything but food and cooking items.  It’s bugging the heck out of me.  I need stamps for Christmas cards.  I need to run to the laundromat one afternoon.  All these things aren’t big.  I just haven’t gotten to them.  It’s the fact that they’re still on the list that’s making me upset.  I don’t want to forget them.  I’m afraid that in the mix of so many bigger things that those are going to fall through the cracks.

The big things.  Ugh, the big things.  I don’t even want to look at the big things right now.

And then there’s another list entirely of things I want to do.  I want to get a library card.  I haven’t even visited the library here on post, and I was thinking of joining the book club once DH is gone.  He never wants to talk about what I’m reading anyway, and I might meet some nice people.  I want to subscribe to Netflix because I don’t think there’s a place to rent movies on post.  I want to buy a rug for the hallway.  I want to make it down to the riverfront and check it out.  I have two volunteer opportunities that look interesting that I want to investigate and get started with.  My cross stitching has been woefully neglected, as has my pleasure reading.  I don’t want to do any of my fun stuff though until my chores are finished.  It’s making me frantic that I might forget about something I want to do while I’m waiting to have time.

This manifested itself the other night.  I flipped out and had a wee bit of a panic problem because it was raining out.  I was so worried that something bad was going to happen.  I just knew that I was going to wake up and the basement was going to be flooded or that the roof would have leaked while I was sleeping.  This is my first big place.  It’s a lot of responsibility even though the post housing people take care of a lot of the maintenance.  I couldn’t sleep knowing that if I did no one would be watching for anything bad that could come along.  Those scared thoughts automatically spiraled down to bigger ones.  Am I always going to freak when it rains?  If I’m scared of the rain, how am I going to handle real issues that come up while I’m alone for a year?  It was a miserable night.

Since I haven’t made it to therapy yet (another thing on the list of undone chores), I’m not going to vent and list out my problems without suggesting a solution.  No one else is going to help me formulate a plan, so I have to proactive.  I’m getting overwhelmed, anxious, and scared by the amount of things I both need and want to do.  Many of those things I am unduly wanting done before my self-imposed deadline of Christmas.  My parents neither expect nor care if many of those things, like a hallway rug, are in place before they arrive.  I can let some of those things fall to another list that can wait.  I need to get up and actually DO some of those things on the list.  Crossing some things off will lessen the pressure that I’m feeling.  I need to chill.  Christmas is three weeks away.  My Christmas shopping is practically done, most things are ordered and will be delivered, and without a unit DH has plenty of time to help with the running around.  Prioritize.  Calm down.  Implement.

Cross Taxi Driver Off My Job Search

I literally just walked in the door from driving my parents to the airport.  I need to breathe.

I couldn’t sleep last night knowing I had to do this today.  I was too freaked out.  Pretty nervous today, but I got my mind off of it by writing some for my thesis.  The trip takes maybe fifteen to twenty minutes, but the traffic around here is crazy nuts.  And this was supposed to be the less crowded time of day too.  I hit the toll road and flipped out.  I started crying, shivering and shaking, hyperventilating, and my hands and feet tingled and went numb.  I couldn’t maintain a constant speed let alone merge across five lanes of traffic in less than 100 yards in traffic that was barreling towards me at 60 mph.  I’ve never freaked out so badly while I was in control of a car before in my life.  I’ve also never had a panic attack that was quite that bad before.  And both my parents sat there staring at me in horror.  My mom might even have drooled a bit her mouth was hanging open so long.  I don’t think they’ve ever seen me have a panic attack before.  My dad’s only driven with me one other time when I was 14.  The trip home by myself was better.  Way less traffic, but I was so worked up that I couldn’t drive smoothly.  Some guy honked at me.  I ran in the door and had to pee my brains out.

So, I’m a little disappointed.  I hoped it’d go better.  I made it without crashing the car into a fiery ball of mangled metal, but does that constitute a success?  If I was alone, I don’t think I would have.  I’m looking at success as capable of completing the task with my own power and with as little to no anxiety freak out episodeness.  That would make this trip a big double fail.  I’m going to contemplate this disaster over fajitas tonight, but then I’m going to set it aside.  I’m not going to dwell on it.  This massive fail does not mean that I will always fail.  It just means I’ve got to go try again.  I’ve been pondering a trip to the post office sometime this week.  I immediately canceled it in my mind after this airport ickiness, but maybe I’ll rethink that.

Status: T minus 30

It’s true.  We’re down to the last dirty thirty before this separation is over.  I fear the rest of the year is going to be one long, panic-stricken whirl.  I declare today to be the official beginning and figured it merited a status report before it all goes to hell. 

I step foot back in the gym today.  Oh it wasn’t pretty.  I had some genuinely indignant muscles.  As much as I fear their wrath tomorrow, it needed to happen.  I feel all over better when I work out regularly, and I think it’s a universal compulsion of military wives to try and get in shape right before their husbands come home.

I got reassigned a new advisor for my thesis today.  Excited and nervous.  Hope he likes all the work I’ve put in already, or I’ll be back to square one.  I think tomorrow will my first official day writing too.  Starting with military telegraphy I think.  It’s been speaking to me.  It’s a small aspect of the paper, but it’s also a great example of the relationship between the military and postal service.  Hopefully it’ll be an easy couple pages, and the rest of the composition juices with rise to the surface.  The first few pages are always the most telling of the whole paper…

My mom asked me to drive her to the airport on Friday.  I’m starting to sweat just thinking about it.  If I end up on the side of the road crying before my mom makes it through airport security, is that a bad sign about future independent driving on my part?  Uhh…  I want to say no so badly.  Damn myself for knowing what’s good for me!

Super Rad has a date to come home!!  I hope I can meet him when he comes off the plane again.  DH is telling me not to hold my breath with how our schedule is looking.  His brand of sensitivity is NOT one of his traits that I’m missing.

Seriously, I’m freaking out about this driving thing!  I wish I hadn’t brought it up.

And the biggie…When DH and I finally get back together after long absences, it’s always a grab bag for how I’ll feel.  I usually don’t get excited until the very last minute, like maybe the day before or afternoon of.  It’s too hard to get all ramped up in advance.  Part of me doesn’t believe it’ll happen I think.  I’m usually extremely nervous and scared once we’re together.  I worry that we won’t be the same when we see each other, and he won’t like me anymore.  I worry that I’ve forgotten how to be with him.  I worry that I’m not going to get all those lovey feelings back toward him.  (Maybe I worry too much?)  I’m sure I’ll get all those feelings when the time gets here, but I’m also feeling a lot of different things this time.  I’m sad.  I know it sounds weird, but I don’t want to move to our new duty station.  I don’t like the area of the country.  DH probably won’t get to be there long before he deploys, leaving me to essentially move in and get to know a new place that I’ve never seen alone.  I have to decorate and furnish our first house, and it’ll all be strange to him when he gets home.  I’ve been crying a lot.  I’m having to prepare for deployment when I don’t even have my hubby.  Super Rad is coming home, relieving that intense fear that my family’s been living with, but I’m not really getting any break.  My hubs is going, and I’m left with that crippling fear about watching the news or getting a phone call when everyone else’s is ending.  There’s so much to do and keep track of and organize during this process.  It’s overwhelming.  My head’s a jumble of jobs, therapists, fences for the dog, car loans, op orders, refrigerators, dining room sets, visits to family, ordering checks, winter coats….  It’s so much that some days I can’t function.  Other days I’m in the middle of this eerie calm where I feel nothing.  It’s over a month away.  I’ll figure it out later.

Today is not one of those days.  And I have a migraine.  If I can survive this, I can do anything.

Back To Business

I’m back! I got back from my marathon vacation two days ago. It was hands down the best time I’ve had in a long, long time. Red and her new family are doing well. It tore my heart out to leave them. I think it’s so unfair that one of the rare people in this world that completely accept me for all my weird, dented, malfunctioning glory lives so far away. We’ve only ever had one fight in the 13 years we’ve been friends. I can say or do the oddest thing, and she’ll shake her head and laugh but not in a mean, condescending way. Nothing but acceptance. I don’t get that a lot. In her voice, in her actions, I only see her concern and care for me. I wish I could have that more than every few years when we visit for a few days. I don’t know what to do with that yet. Am I lucky or am I being denied what everyone else gets? More thoughts on that later.

The rest of my family in Prairieville was equally as great. I had the best time with my grandparents. It was slow and easy. I got to see both my cousins’ new babies, Thing 1 and Thing 2. They’re both girls and cute as a button. Everything about my trip just felt like home. I was so sad to leave. As I was saying goodbye, my grandfather hugged me and said “You always know where home is.” I couldn’t hold back the waterworks after that. My grandpa is absolutely one of my favorite people. He is a wonderful man, and I always wanted to marry someone just like him.

While I was there, I bought the cutest sweater. Not newsworthy really, but I’m so excited for it to get cooler so I can wear it. 🙂

My grandma and I took a trip and went to see the incredible house of the guy who started Arbor Day. He really was a remarkable man, and his home is fabulous. It was a beautiful day for it, and we got some fresh blueberries to make blueberry pound cake. All around, it was a neat trip. The house is on a state park now, so it’s a good day trip to take where you can picnic and be outside. There are tons of orchards around it with activities for all ages, so I would recommend going later in the summer when the apples are in season.

It’s not often when you go on a vacation that was so awesome that you regret seeing your own bed again, but mine was that way. It was so long that it feels a little strange to be back here. I have yet to unpack. That’s not going to be fun at all. Boo. I’ve been catching up with all my blog friends instead. Waayyyy more fun. I’m starting to have assignments due for my thesis for school. I spent all day today putting together an 8 page bibliography. It was insane. I never want to do that again. While out gallivanting around I finished all my research, and I’m sitting down to write. To be honest, it’s scary. I’m so not looking forward to sitting and typing for the next two months straight. Ugh…

I finally talked to Super Rad yesterday too. Oh yeah!! I missed him like crazy. He’s got a tentative time to be coming home. It is probably the most inconvenient time for me, but as long as he’s home for good I’ll be happy.

My mind is racing 900 miles per hour because it’s 39 days until DH is done and we can be together again. Sigh… I can’t sit still!! I’ve been planning my new house every night as I try to fall asleep, and I don’t even know what it looks like yet. I’ve been collecting small things that I’m going to need and freaking out because I’m afraid I’m going to forget something else. Number 1 on Sis B’s list made me laugh but is also freaking me out! I’m in list making mode. I’m in crap, I need to apply for jobs mode. I’m groaning because there’s no way I’m going to fit half of my stuff back in our car. Speaking of our car, DH says it’s on its last leg so we’re going to have to squeeze in buying a new one before he leaves. That also puts me into money worry mode. I’ve been collecting projects that I can work on while DH is deployed (which unfortunately is coming up just as quickly). I’m in too antsy to wait anymore mode. Eight months!! I’m so excited this is finally ending, but I’m getting pretty stressed too. That with the looming mountain of thesisness and leaving my bestest friend in the world is inching me closer to instability.

So I’m hoping to make a plan. I need to get my butt out of bed in the morning while it’s still morning. I need to exercise—yoga, walking, the gym. I need to sit down and work my fingers down to nubbins while my parents are at work. I need to get a resume put together and apply for any job that will pay me reasonably well. I need to make all my calls, send in all my forms, and all around tie up loose ends.



It’s ok if I can’t get it all done early. There will be time once we get there.



Quit procrastinating but take breaks. It all doesn’t have to be done today.

But seriously, you’ve got a lot to do so get your ass out of bed.

Don’t Be Afraid To Tell Them

To Write Love on Her Arms is one of my favorite sites, and this blog post is probably my favorite blog post of all time from anyone.  It’s what I needed to hear tonight.

For those who are trying to help someone else with mental illness, this is what they need to hear.  This is the help they’re looking for from you.  This is the type of acceptance they need to get better.

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