About Me

Fort Bragg, NC, United States
I'm a stay at home dad raising four beautiful children. I am the proud spouse of an Army Lieutenant Colonel. I do my best to keep up with the kids and all of their activities. I enjoy playing the bass and the occasional bass guitar building project. You can follow me on twitter if you so desire...@ArmySpouse007.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Those sneaky deployment blues

Out of nowhere, my wife received deployment orders two weeks ago. This came as a complete surprise and shock to us. If you remember, I wrote a blog a couple of weeks ago on getting ready for a deployment that we believed was coming in July. What we never would have guessed was that the deployment would come so much sooner. There's really no way to prepare yourself for something like that. One week she's here until the end of July, the next... she's gone. But, as I've told many people over the past few days, this isn't my first trip around the block. I know what a deployment holds for us. I still remember how to get through and make the most of it. Paper cups/plates and the assembly line shower process... remember?

What I had forgotten about, though, was those sneaky deployment blues. Not familiar with those? Probably because they are so sneaky! There you are, having a good day with the kids and enjoying the weather. Maybe you're sitting outside with a cold beverage and socializing with the neighbors. Whatever you're doing on this seemingly relaxing day, out of nowhere comes this shot of deployment reality, this upper cut of life's brass tacks. The blast of realization that your spouse is gone and you're going to be sleeping alone tonight and every night after forward for the foreseeable future can hit you like a ton of bricks. And then, what had been a nice day turns into an evening of sadness and depression. I call these the deployment blues. And they can strike when you least expect them.

I think that the worst part of deployment blues is the completely unpredictable nature of them. One minute things are good, then the next you're down in the dumps. They can be set off by a scent, a show on TV, something one of the kids says. Most of the time, it is something completely innocuous. Whatever it might be, it triggers a thought, then a realization of what is missing, namely your spouse.

What to do about them? Well, there I don't have an answer. They come suddenly, then fade to the background with time. Two days ago they hit me hard. For hours I was a bit down in the dumps. There was no distracting me or "busying myself" to make them go away. The next day, life was better, and I was back on an even keel. Who can tell when they will strike again? There's no way to prepare for them. They simply come. Sometimes it helps to talk about them with someone you trust. Sometimes not. Most of the time you just ride them out and wait for the day to end. For me, one of the best means to get over the deployment blues is to simply wait for tomorrow. They almost never last more than a day. And the sun does indeed come up the next day.

What is important to remember is that the deployment blues are very natural and very normal. It just means that you miss your spouse. And you know what? It's ok to be sad because they are gone. And it's ok that the sadness of their absence continues months into a deployment. What you and I have to realize when we enter a deployment is that we are going to have good days and bad days. There are going to be lots of highs and lots of lows. Just be ready for them and roll with the punches. You and I can and will get through this.

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You can follow me on Twitter if you so choose... @Armyspouse007

2 comments:

  1. So so true. I go through days like this even without a deployment! Hang in there!

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  2. I'm right there in the middle of it right now, awaiting R&R, and battling the blues. This WILL pass, though not soon enough, huh?

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