I really thought that because my husband spent the last three years in a Geo-Bachelor status that deployment would be easy. He transferred back home 5-months ago and even with workups, it’s amazing how seamlessly we reintegrated. Geo-Bachelor was awful, plain and simple. Three years is so much worse than a deployment, right? But this deployment has been harder in different ways. Being that I’m one to make a plan and tackle the plan … I signed up to start a brand new family readiness group (FRG) for our command.

I feel like FRG support is critical. However, it has taken an immense amount of work, not to mention that with us recently transferring here I don’t know anyone within the command and I’m not exactly a social butterfly. This puts me totally out of my comfort zone right out of the gate. On top of raising two young boys, working full time, two baseball schedules and a weekly column … I’ve over-extended myself.

I forgot the different emotional impact that deployment has on you. It messes with your head. Maybe it doesn’t mess with yours, but I know a good bit of people that the limited contact messes with you after a while. It becomes easy to doubt what isn’t right in front of you. Coupled with a fragile emotional state, it can be difficult to function.

As strong of a person as I am, I sometimes find myself forgetting to guard my heart against those thoughts of doubt and fear. Of course, the hyper-busy schedule doesn’t help. The more stressed I am, the more stressed my boys become. They might not know it, but they feed off the energy that I put off. So here I am, remembering that it is okay to say no to things.

Of course, I have obligations I can’t say no to right now, but going forward if it’s not an obligation I have to say no. And, as more things come up I’ll need to decide to only take on what is most important. Deployment is slow-going and I forgot that. Keeping the boys and I busy is good to a point, but first I need to re-establish my sea legs. I have to get through these first few rough weeks as we remember how to do this. I wish I could fast-forward time to where my family has figured out our temporary new normal.

Until then I’ll take a breath and take it one day at a time while my legs get strong enough to bear the rest of the journey ahead.

“A smooth sea never made a skillful sailor,” Theodore Roosevelt.


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