January 14, 2013

The Long and Short of It

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My guest blogger today is here to continue the While He's Away series, and she's writing 
about the part of separations that doesn't get talked about enough, in my opinion- the shorter ones. 
The lovely Mrs. McDancer from McDancing Through Life explains 
how the length of time away doesn't always mean an easier or harder time.
(And while you're checking out her blog, be sure to read this post.)

When you love someone who is serving in the military, inevitably there will be separations. Long or short, they can be rough. A little less than a year after we became a couple, the husband was deployed to Afghanistan. That was both the longest and shortest year of my life. I felt a weird paradox where the days dragged on, but the moments quickly slipped away. That year had some huge moments including an R&R wedding and a baby born en route to moving home to my parents, but those are all stories for another day.

After making it through a deployment, I cockily believed that any separation shorter would be a piece of cake, but I soon found myself eating those thoughts.  This summer we had a relatively short separation, in military terms, but it too held its own set of hardships.  During the deployment, we had regular communication; I was spoiled by phone calls, emails, and even the occasional Skype session, but for the month long separation this summer all we had were good old snail mail letters. The day that my husband had to turn in his phone and say goodbye, I was sitting at a pediatric neurologists office, learning that my son had potentially suffered a stroke or else had another {also totally scary sounding} issue with his brain. How do I tell my husband news like that over the phone in a 5 minute conversation, especially when we had to wait a month for an MRI that would give us the answers. I guess you just keep calm and carry on, but believe me, for that month of uncertainty, all I wanted was to tell my husband my fears and anxieties and have him reassure me. Instead, I spent the month trying not to drive myself crazy and my son and I spent the month keeping as busy as possible.

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Often I downplay the hardships of shorter separations. I don‘t want to be told to put on my big girl panties or seem weak and needy.  I know that I am capable of thriving on my own, but that doesn't mean I have to love doing it! Long or short, it is hard to be apart from the person with whom I've built a family, but such is the life of a military wife. Thank goodness for all the amazing people I've met along the way who keep me sane in this world of insanity!
mcdancing through life

3 kind comments from you:

Jenn said...

Oh my goodness!!! I cannot even imagine how long that month must have seemed when you had such nerve-wracking news to share. Sometimes I hear something that I want to share so badly, but then I realize that the only person whose reaction I care about is Steve's, and I can't really do much besides send an email and wait... It's very frustrating. Glad you've got a great support system!

Divapalooza said...

Congrats to Chambanachik - This week's Blog of the Week over on Blog Mommas! Drew your name right out of my blog box! Enjoy...

Holly Robertson said...

Any amount of time separated can be hard.

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