Saturday, January 15, 2011

My Realizations...

Things I've Realized Lately....

1. If mice can make Cinderella's dress, then there's nothing wrong with buying mine at Goodwill.

2. The South is far more religious and patriotic than the North. They really mean it when they say "God Bless America!"

3. When my husband goes to PT, I slide over to his side of the bed and fall back asleep. But when he has Duty and is gone all night, I sleep on the couch so I don't have to be in the bed alone.

4. I don't always have to wait for my husband to call his parents because now they are my family, too.

5. Seeing MY words in print makes me cry. Hearing my husband say "I'm proud of you" does the same thing.

6. Laughter lingers.

7. Orange juice really does taste better in Florida.

8. Sun tea is good even in December.

9. My job isn't just a job to me and I'm slightly addicted to it.

10. I enjoy taking the Christmas tree down as much as I enjoy putting it up.

11. Chop Suey is STILL my favorite breakfast.

12. My dog knows when I'm sick.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Military Spouse Magazine MADE ME SMILE!!!

As some of you know, Military Spouse Magazine was running an essay contest on "Why My Husband Rocks" and I won. Here is my winning essay (which will also be included in December's magazine). I am so very excited to see my words in print. Some of you know how long I've waited. And maybe this is just the beginning.

Dear Jeff,
Greatness is an individually relative term. It is not a tangible unit of measurement. It cannot be weighed; it does not have a recognized exact height or width. There is no well-established formula that will always derive an answer exactly equal to its sum. Scientist can measure gravity, oxygen and the temperature of the sun but still the equation for greatness is illusive. In my eyes, the exact height of greatness is 5’11 and the exact weight is 185 pounds. The width of greatness fills up the left side of my bed perfectly. It is an exact formula of deep dimples, blue eyes, broad shoulders and rough hands. It is an equation of courage, sacrifice, honesty, bravery, loyalty, strength, honor, goodness and grace. Greatness is covered in camo and walks like a soldier. Greatness is and always has been defined by you.

Before you, I had known other military service members but I had never met a hero. The two do not automatically go hand in hand. Most people don’t realize that fact but I do. Soldiers are made by choice. Heroes are made because to them there is no other choice. Some see sacrifices as a hardship but to heroes it is a privilege. Soldiers are taught and trained. Heroes cannot be for it is, and always has been, simply who they are. I see that in you.

Your sacrifices can be seen daily; commitments to a country, family and woman you love. Pre-dawn runs even on leave days. Soccer games on early Saturday mornings. Evenings spent explaining algebra, geometry, science and the best way to hold a BB gun. Late nights spent warming my cold feet and chasing away my nightmares. It’s in the weeks, months and years that you spend in the sand, in the field, overseas or covering someone else’s duty. It’s in the Taco Soup that you make at request and the burgers you grill.

But your greatness can be seen in the things you do for my children. Boys that you owe nothing to and yet still you choose to give them the world. Time, patience, understanding, love and the constant reassuring promise that you are here to stay. It’s in the moments you spend with them that I can see you for what you truly are….the definition of greatness. Thank you for what you do for them, for us and for me. Thank you for choosing to make this journey with me on raising them from boys to men. You didn’t have to but I’m so VERY glad that you did.

This was supposed to be an essay about why you “rock”. And while I could give some witty reply about the way you dance, how you always open my car door or the way you let me use the hot water first; in my eyes that’s not what makes you great or makes you rock. It is the way you love; me, the boys and our country. The more I wrote, the more I realized that telling this to a stranger was of no real importance. What truly mattered was in telling you. So here it is for you, in black and white….The only definition of greatness I know is you. And it is for that reason that you truly ROCK.

I love you completely and without falter.


Monday, August 23, 2010

Contrary to Popular Belief.....

YOU do not know me. You know one side of the story and feel that is enough to judge me. It’s not but I understand that your desire to do so is human nature. This is my attempt to set the record straight for all of you who have illusions of who I am and make assumptions on the life I live.

Contrary to popular belief….

• I did not marry I man that I barely know.

• I did not choose some guy over what’s best for my children.

• I choose to bring another person in to their lives who will simply love them.

• NO ONE is losing my children.

• I am not a bad mother, a heartless parent or out to hurt, destroy or attack. I am living my life.

• I am not callous and cold-hearted when it involves my children and their dad.

• Staying in Maine for ones whole life can lead to closed minds and narrow points of view and that evidence is becoming clearer and clearer.

• Loving my boys is not determined, measured or validated by the state we live in.

• Allowing my children to have new experiences might be emotionally hard but it is not cruel.

• My silence is a reflection of my desire to do the right thing not my inability to defend myself and the choices I make.

• I know that it hurts like hell and I know because it hurts me, too.

• They ARE still children and will adjust better than anyone wants to admit.

• Regardless of how they feel about moving, my children know that their dad and I both love them very much.

• If I was leaving and they were staying, they would be saying they want to go.

• You use words like “resent” to offer comfort it and it makes me realize how lost your morals are that you actually hope for those things.

• I could counter-act each attack that is made but I realize there is no benefit in that. Some people will only consider what they believe to be true. Other people’s opinions aren’t valuable enough to even bother with. Still others have no way of thinking for themselves and merely jump on with whatever everyone else is thinking. Regardless, there is no point in dealing with any of those.

• Adjectives cannot be measured. Words like “Great”, “Happy” and “Mean” are a matter of perspective and are not standardized ways of determining and measuring success or failure.

• Sometimes you can fixate on one side of a coin so long that you forget there is another side.

• Flaws do not ruin something beautiful unless you look at it and only see the flaws. While you might be in that situation, rest assured my children are not.

• My children have been raised with the strong and solid knowledge that they are loved deeply and completely by their family. Aren’t they lucky that family is a bit bigger now and there are more people to love them?

• I DO want what’s best for my children. It’s just my idea of best is different from yours.

• I DO get along with their father. Yes, we disagree at times but we DO get along. Even through all this, we have not fought. Great for our boys but real irony for you, don’t you think?

• They will do great. They were, after all, raised that way.

Now really, isn’t there somewhere else you can focus your energy since you seem so gifted in snap decisions and protesting? Solve world hunger, cure diabetes or end the war and bring our soldiers home? Seems kind of unfair that you are spending all your time focusing on fixing me when there are so many bigger issues in the world that you could meddle in.


Friday, June 11, 2010

Love me anyway...

Sometimes the sun shines on my days and sometimes it does not. Sometimes I laugh until tears come and sometimes I smile to hide the hurt. Sometimes it hurts to love but I have learned by now that it ALWAYS hurts not to. Sometimes I want to sleep in and other times I try and stay up late. Sometimes I'm surprisingly full of grace and sometimes....well, sometimes I'm not. Sometimes I'm afraid of the dark, the water and the birds. And sometimes, I barely even notice they are there. Sometimes everything goes wrong and sometimes nothing does at all. Sometimes, I fall asleep mid-sentence and sometimes silence comes before sleep does. Sometimes I'm grumpily lonely and sometimes I'm beautifully, perfectly happy. Sometimes I eat pasta for breakfast and sometimes I eat cake instead. Sometimes I wear my clothes all wrong and sometimes I wear nothing at all. Sometimes I stand on my own and sometimes I let myself hang on and lean. Sometimes I push too hard, too long and too much and sometimes I don't push nearly enough. Sometimes I laugh too loudly and sometimes when I don't get the joke, I don't laugh at all. Sometimes I am late for everything and sometimes.....well, there really is no other sometimes to go along with that. I'm just late. That's all. Maybe you could just love me anyway least sometimes?

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Waitin' on Uncle

You probably don't want to really hear about how much I miss my husband but I do. I am now counting the days until I can see him (even though Uncle still hasn't provided us with an exact date yet). I always feel like part of our home is missing; part of our life. Up until this point it was something I pretty much accepted and adjusted to the key words are "up until this point". Now, it's not so easy anymore. For me, it is always the hardest at the end. I just miss him. I guess it's really that simple.

I've started saying goodbye. No, I don't actually speak those words. Not yet. Not when we don't have a date or a post. Now though, I'm conciously aware when I visit that it just might be the last time. I visit anyway though; never letting on that we might not walk this way again. I haven't hid the fact that I'm leaving but at the same time, time is relevant and you can get so busy living life that days quickly turn into months before you turn around. And I'm no good at goodbyes. I cry, my heart hurts and as loved as I feel in that moment I also feel completely alone. So I won't spotlight that the last time will be the last time. I'll simply let the days fall off the calendar quietly and without fanfare. It's easier that way.

Sexy Beast said he has to start reading my blog. It's another way for us to stay connected while he is on one coast and I'm on the other. (Note to mentioning his birthday gift on here!). Although with his work schedule, I doubt that he'll really have the time. He's starting taking classes now as well  so there goes what little free time he has.  And with that we add just another reason that I'm so very proud of him.

Allergies are acting up so for now I'm going to bed. I'm sorry for the boring blog. I'll do better...I promise. Something exciting is bound to happen over the weekend. It usually does! Wish I knew how many more of these Maine weekends I have left. Really looking forward to this Army way of life!

That's all for now....the rest will come!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Just Smile Pretty

Instant Smiles are so easy with flowers like this. I love Sexy Beast.

Monday, June 7, 2010

The Story Begins...

Some of you know that I'm a writer. Not a published one but a writer none-the-less. I have stories inside of me and I see them everywhere. My latest attempt at writing is a story about deployment told from a Military Wife point of view. Here is the beginning. Please tell me if this interests you, if you would want to read more or if it lacks the ability to hold your attention. For the record, while my life is in parts of itthe writing itself is fiction. Please be brutal but be kind. If you like, please share it with others you know. I would love to get as much feedback as I can. Thanks for reading.

September 24th

You’ve always called me a cheater; not in a “Are you flirting with the mailman” kinda way but in a “How did you get that ace” kinda way. Well, tonight, I’m admitting to cheating. Not ever on you and not even by getting those aces but with this book. Last night when you gave it to me, you told me to write in it when you go so I can capture our year apart and keep you with me. You’ll write in yours, too, and maybe in that way, we’ll be a bit closer in spite of the distance. Maybe it won’t be a whole year lost. I know you didn’t mean to start it tonight but I need to. So yes, I’m cheating. You see, I’ll have months and months of entries when you aren’t here. Sleepless nights and empty days. Reading them over will only make me miss you more. I wanted one entry to be written while you are still here, warming my pillow with your breath. I needed one that would bring me right back to this moment and this room; one that would bring me right back here to you. It’s like taking one last deep breath before I have to start swimming. Simply put, I couldn’t wait.

Tomorrow you’ll leave us. I know this and yet I sit here and let you sleep. I can hear the steadiness of your breathing and it makes me think of the nights when that would have been my lullaby. Without even meaning to, I’ve taken those nights for granted. Somehow realizing how much they mean and yet forgetting it at the same time. Until now. Now that I’m ready to lose them, I’m suddenly painfully aware how perfect life was in those moments with you. It’s those moments that I’m going to think back on over this next year and wish for.

I want to touch your face and feel the coolness of your skin. I want to kiss you and in some way freeze that moment for both of us. I can’t though. It’s very possible that this just might be the last good sleep you have for a very long time. Waking you up will only bring the sadness back to both of us. I’ve woke several times the last few nights to find you watching me in the moonlight. Much like I am, you were capturing the moments that you’ll miss the most. Your eyes were always on my face; kissing me without even using your mouth. I would smile at you and snuggle in to your arms. Closing my eyes, I would kiss your face. It was my attempt to hide my tears from you. I would touch your skin in hopes of soothing your soul and by doing so soothe mine as well. I’ve learned that sometimes the only way to stop the ache is to touch you until the realness of you replaces the sting of the hurt that is coming.

A million times I’ve wanted to stop the clock. I’ve wanted to find a way to keep things exactly as they are. I want to beg you to stay but I know that it’s not your choice to go. It is your duty but it’s not your choice. As hard as this is on me, I know it’s even harder on you. So I swallow down that plea and simply love you while I have you. I just keep right on going at neck-breaking speed into that brick wall that I know is coming. I have no other way to explain it other than I simply love you that much.

It’s going to be a very long year without you, JP. I can’t tell you the darkness, sadness, emptiness and loneliness that will fill this house. I can’t talk about the moments you’ll miss and the holidays we’ll spend wishing you home. I can’t tell you how the hours will stretch out and the weeks will seem unmovable. I can’t tell you how lost I’ll feel without the scent of you, the nearness of you and the sound of you. Even though you call me your “Writer Girl” sometimes, words fail even me.

You just rolled over in your sleep and reached out until you touched me then you were still again. It’s as if, even in your sleep, you need to know that I’m safe and near. I know that in the weeks and months ahead, you’ll wake up when you reach for me and I’m not there. I know those will be the long nights and empty hours for you. During those nights, know that somewhere….half a world away….I’m reaching for you and having long nights and empty hours, too.

I’m going to go now. I need to touch you, to wake you up and hold you until my tears stop or until sleep steals me away from them. It’s hard to believe that today you are here and tomorrow I will begin the long journey of waiting for you to return to me.

I love you forever and then a bit more.


Your Girl

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Wrapping up 35

It's been awhile. I'm sorry. My life has been chaos, craziness and madness. When things get hard, I am known for shutting down, pulling in and disappearing.  I focus completely on the task at hand and have no energy left over to give anyone else. I was at that place for awhile and I'm sorry.

Went to Oklahoma about two weeks ago. Checked out the Post (growing up around the Navy means I sometimes forget it's not called a Base), checked out houses and schools and the local McDonald's. :) Yup, their fries will do just fine. The wind blows there....most every day. It's kind of funny the things that take you by surprise about a place. I'm pretty much convinced that  if we go to OK, my hair will be a Hot Mess (that's my new phrase and I double heart love it) for the next three years. There's some sense of freedom though that comes to simply resigning yourself to messy hair. Kinda like, you now have time to focus on things of more importance.

Still no for now, we sit and wait. Kinda like that runner on the starting line waiting for the gun. What else can you do?? My Sexy Beast re-enlists tomorrow. I'm so proud of him and it breaks my heart that I won't be there. I'm fully aware that he's not just promising that HE'LL give the Army as much time as they want. He's promising that WE'LL give the Army as much time as they want. He's signing his name and taking that oath but there will be four more names that aren't seen but are there just the same. Only one voice will speak the creed and make the promise but there will be four other lives living it and making the sacrifices as well. The unseen ones but just as real. I wish I could be there to shed my tears, kiss his face and stand a bit taller when I'm once again reminded that I married a hero. I wish that I could be there to remind him that it's his choice but our journey. He has promised me a photo though and it will be one that I frame and treasure. It will be a reminder of his commitment....of our commitment....our life.

So...drama ensued while I was in Oklahoma. Go figure. Four days with my husband and I can't simply enjoy, relax and memorize those moments. Veder (ex husband 1) rushed out and filed papers for custody of my oldest son (The Teen). Not because I'm a bad mom but because at 14, my son was freaking out about moving. So instead of talking to me about it and both us getting on the same page....he chose the other route. It was a week of sheer hell for me. Tears, heartaches (literally) and sadness. There is no need to rehash what happened (because I'll just get mad again) but needless to say, I did not just give in. After much talking, praying and several agonizing days, we have settled this temporary madness.  End result is.... The Teen IS going to Oklahoma. Gee....who knew?? Grrr! Ah, the joy in breathing again.

I had a birthday yesterday! I love love love my birthday. I always wake up early and feel that GREAT things are bound to happen simply because it is my birthday! And I'm right! Yesterday was a great day. My friends blew up my facebook page reminding me that I'm not alone. Talked to Zona (BFF) for about an hour. Opened birthday boxes. Spent time with sweet Bella (who made me laugh all night) and then came home and Skyped with my husband. He called me Beautiful and I cannot tell you how that makes my heart fill. Moms (my MIL) made me a beautiful bouquet of silk flowers that perfectly matches my wedding bouquet. I was instantly back on that beach standing barefoot while I married my soldier. Such a perfect day! I've pretty much decided that I'm going to rock 36!

I guess that's all for now. My dog needs to go out, there are dishes to wash, laundry to fold and groceries to buy (oh yeah, once again GOD BLESS the commissary and the fact that I was able to get my military ID during our Oklahoma visit!!!). I have life to live and the faster I make it through this day, the closer I am to my new life! I'll write more later but for now, life waits.

The rest will come......

Monday, May 31, 2010

The Canyon

I am at a loss for words to write. Somehow you've managed to take them from me. It hurts but nowhere near as much as the other things that you are trying to take from me. He says that you love him enough to want him to choose what he wants. I love him enough to want what's best for him. Isn't that the difference in being a friend and being a parent? That is the great canyon of difference between you and I.

And yet when all is said and done, I know that I'll be able to say that I always did my best and I never failed him. Can you? Don't answer...those are the questions that you can only answer honestly within yourself. And I'm not sure that you are even able to do that.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Where Did I Come From?

Where was it exactly that I crossed the threshold to needing to dye my hair, go to the gym and use sunscreen?

Where was I exactly when I could no longer justify spending half a paycheck on clothes and shoes?

When did I become so boring that I couldn't simply jump in the car and take off for the night, a weekend or forever?

Where did this women come from who knows about Drain-O, OxiClean and Magic Erasers?

Where did I get these comfortable shoes, laugh lines and over sized purses?

Where did I come from?

When did I start carrying napkins, straws and band-aids in my car?

Where is the girl who wore short shorts, mini skirts and belly shirts?

When did I become so good at catching cookie thieves, instigating tickle fights and mopping up apple juice?

Where did I learn exactly when to smile at you in order to make you smile, too?

Where did I learn to cook dinner, do fractions and fold laundry at the same time?

When did I stop worrying about fitting in, moving up and getting paid more?

When did I start instead hanging on, lifting higher and working harder? 

Where did I learn to erase bad dreams, hurt feelings and ink marks on clothes?

 Looking at the woman I've become, I can't help but wonder "Where did I come from?"

And then you  smile at me and suddenly I understand.

Just as you came from me....maybe, perhaps, I came from you, too.