Beautiful, imperfect, distorted little lives

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Today, Brody stood in front of the fan and recited “Star Wars” to himself, wildly amused with the distortion of his voice.  He found something so wonderfully fun about the change he heard.  The simple joys of a toddler are immeasurable and inspiring 

Jason has been gone a week.  Now, before everyone hands me a hankie with their deployment condolences, let’s be clear:  The man is TDY at Fort Rucker, “catching up on his sleep” (not a smart comment to make to a wife with the 5 kids), living in a hotel with wifi, take-out, and drive-able access to the beach.  I, however, remain home with diapers, dishes, and swimming lessons.

That being said, my step-daughter and I did just have a week long “Vampire Diaries” marathon that never would have happened if Mr. Met had been home.  It’s a perk.

We have five more weeks to go, which is really nothing in the army scheme of things.  Yet, as I flip another month on the calendar, and it creeps closer to D-day, I have to admit harboring a slight resentment that more of our time is gobbled up.  But resignation is winning over the resentment, so it’s a fairly peaceful TDY.

After all, this is our new “normal.”

How easily we fall back into this routine!  Skype up and running, just waiting for a call, FB on in the background in case he IM’s, taking my phone with me everywhere I go.  On one hand, it’s kind of like this is what we do, and this is just how our life runs.  On the other hand, it’s getting really old.  Our life is all sort of distorted right now.  

I told Jason last night that I just want something to look forward to.  Of course I look forward to the day he comes home from TDY.  I can’t wait to get my arms around him, to show him the changes I’ve made to the house, to introduce him to Chase, the kindergartner.  But I also know I’ll only have him for about 2 1/2 weeks before he’ll leave again.  The most time we have together before this deployment comes is about a 2 1/2 month stretch.  I’m clinging to that like a drowning woman on a life-raft, keeping my eyes set on the horizon, even though I know night will fall shortly after we get there.  

So if this is our “new normal,” I decided to get with a schedule and keep it that way.  Set goals for myself for the next couple of years:  You know, go the gym and lose the Brody weight (yeah, and this time I mean it…?), publish the finished book that lives only in the depths of my computer, actually bento the kids lunch boxes like the pinteresting freak of nature I know I could be.  Sure, I miss him, but if I base my self-worth and my routine on whether or not he’s here, I’ll find myself doing a whole lot of nothing for the next two years.  I’m worth more than that.  We all are.

Out comes the pen and paper, my trusty worry-absolvers.  It’s time to map it out, make my goals, grow my wings and carry these kids through the next two rather distorted years of our lives.  Maybe this time I’ll follow Brody’s lead, and sing into the distortion, rather than fight it until I’m bleeding.  

We’ve started this roller coaster ride, but this time I refuse to let it blindside me.  We’re going to grow through these changes (and not around the waist-line, hence my gym goal, LOL!), and stop looking for something to “look forward to.”  Our “some day” is now, and I refuse to wish away two years of my children’s lives waiting for this deployment cycle to end.  No, it’s not going to be the same without Jason here, but I’m going to take a page out of Brody’s book and find something to work towards and smile about even though it’s not exactly right.  If we can do that, and embrace the awkward, imperfect nature of our military life, then I think we won’t just be okay, we’ll be soaring through this and coming out stronger and happier.

Here’s to fans, and sweet little babies who just can’t stop saying “Luke, I am your father.”

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