Friday, April 29, 2011

MilSpouse Friday Fill in #1

I haven't done one of these in like...a month! But I'm back! And I'm going to count the weeks till our July wedding. 12 weeks. EEK!!!! :)

Link up with Wife of a Sailor!!

1. Have you and your spouse agreed to live in separate locations (a geographical bachelor tour) knowing that the short-term inconvenience would have long-term benefits for your family? How did it work for you? submitted by When Good People Get Together

Of course. Story of the last three years together. We weren't ready to get married when he PCS'd to Germany, so we continued the relationship to see where it would take us. Distance makes the heart grow fonder. And I can't wait for the distance to July :)

2. What is your favorite thing about being a MilSpouse? submitted by Sarah Ruth Today
I can't fully attest to this, but I do like that we'll be moving to new places. And getting to live in many different places. Maybe we'll be doing this too frequently, and I'll get tired of it real quick, but I am really excited to be able to experience many new places and things eventually. And while I haven't traveled Space A yet, I am excited to give that a try too!

3. If you could still have your spouse/significant other and your family, but take the military life out of it…would you? submitted by Trust. Love. Believe. Bake.
No way. I sometimes joke that if I win the lottery (I suppose it would increase my odds of winning if I actually played...) that I'd buy his way out of the Army, but I would never actually do that. We've talked about him getting out, prior to re-enlisting, but I think deep down we both know that it's going to be the Army way of life for the next 12 years at least. The Army had a big influence on who he is today and I wouldn't trade that for the world. Joining is one of the best things he's done, and I think he'd agree with that.

4. What have your homecoming experiences been like after a year long tour of separation? submitted by Army Soldier, Army Wife
We've only had one and it went very well, in my opinion. We've had many separations and no matter what, each time, we pick up right where we left off. Deployment or just a separation, we pick up where we left off. It's great. I know that when we actually live together, it will be a big adjustment period for both of us, especially coming home to an actual home (not the barracks), possibly kids, it'll be an entirely different experience. And honestly? I can't wait to experience that.

5. If you have a child(ren) why you chose their name(s)? If not, why you would name your child something? submitted by Tiara’s & ACU’s
We don't have kids (yet), but we have our future daughter's name picked out. We've thrown around a lot of names for our un-conceived son, but haven't come to any decisions. Our daughter's middle name will be the same as his mother's middle name, and the first name is a name I've always liked and he likes too. No, I'm not posting them here and I don't even tell friends the names we like for fear that they'll have kids before us and love the name and steal it. That fear is way more mine than his, but it's a genuine fear I have. I just had the thought that we won't tell our parents either, because I know that will drive my mother absolutely INSANE. And I'll enjoy every minute of it. :)

P.S. I am trying really really really really really REALLY hard to not to go Why? Because. Because I already cheated once. Because I met Seth's mom today at the mall so we could get Seth's brother's suit for the wedding (he's in the wedding party). And Bed Bath and Beyond is right across from the mall. And when I was leaving, I saw her drive to that store. And my wedding shower is this weekend. And you know what that means? MAYBE SHE WENT SHOPPING FOR US. But I am going to be good this time I SWEAR and not go to the website and see what items have been fulfilled. I'm really not. Probably. No, I swear, I'm really not going to. I'm going to go watch hours of the Royal Wedding on TV to distract myself. Yes, I've been slightly obsessed with it today.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

I cheated

My good friend and co-worker Sarah is throwing me a bridal shower on Sunday! She handmade these invitations herself!!! Aren't the SO pretty?! I'm in love with them.

little pink rhinestones!!

I found matching Thank You cards! Could they be any more prefect for the cards that she handmade? Thanks, American Greetings for creating these especially for me.

And confession time: I may have just cheated and looked at our registry to see what items have been fulfilled. Oops?

Monday, April 25, 2011

Normalcy...coming soon!

This weekend, I spent time reading old posts from a fellow blogger, since she started her blog. I was reading through summer and fall posts and it dawned on me that Seth and I will be TOGETHER this fall! We'll be living together! On the same continent! In the same state! IN THE SAME HOUSE!

It's crazy to think about: in our 3+ year relationship, we've never seen each other in the months of July, August, September or October (and also May). The last three years, for those four summer and fall months, he has been in Iraq, Germany and then Afghanistan. This is the first time since 2008 that he'll be home in the United States during those months. This year, we'll be together for those months (barring any unforeseen trainings, of course).

Four whole months together?! Holy shit, we're about to have some NORMALCY to our relationship!! Whoa! We can have BBQ's, go camping over Labor Day weekend, get together with our good friends in Oregon, go kayaking, go to a pumpkin patch together, carve our pumpkins, go to a cider normal things! Or we can do absolutely nothing at all, and spend a rainy weekend curled up in the house, watching lots of movies and reading good books. We'll be together, regardless.

I can't wait to get to Washington!!!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Changes are a-happenin'

I mentioned in a previous post that Seth got orders to his next duty station. Which means I know where I'll be moving after our July wedding! He knew the tentative date that he had to be to Ft. Lewis and while I was in Germany, I learned the official date he has to sign in. And it is much sooner than I was anticipating, but you won't find me complaining about that!

And can I just say, thank you from the bottom of my heart, Army, for not royally screwing up our wedding date. Because these orders are much sooner than I think both of us expected, we chose a wedding date that we thought would be safe. Safe meaning he'd be back from Afghanistan by that time, but not at his next duty station yet and he'd be going back to Germany afterward. (Yeah, yeah, I know, this is the military we're talking about. No date is ever safe).

Anyways, the date for this works out pretty perfectly, considering the circumstances. He signs out of his current post about 2 weeks before the wedding. He'll be home for 30 days of leave before he has to report to Ft. Lewis. While we had planned on a road trip to the east coast for our honeymoon, we'll now be packing up the apartment and taking a road trip to the west coast to start our lives together! East coast....west least we'll be going to a coast! Luckily, we hadn't planned anything for the honeymoon yet, because we didn't know how much time he'd be home after the wedding. We were just going to wing it all. Now that we know how much time we have, we've come up with a new plan: after the wedding, we'll go up north and go camping for 3 or so days, come back, pack up the rest of the apartment for 2 days, pack up a moving truck the next 2 days, and then we'll head out to the west coast the following day (which is 9 days after the wedding). We're anticipating it taking us 5 days to drive out there (yay for driving moving trucks going over the mountains!) and that'll put us in Washington about a week before he has to sign in. We'll unload our stuff real quick and then take a few day trip to the coast. While our honeymoon has changed significantly from what originally was supposed to happen, I'm totally content with our new plan and can't wait for it. Yes, it will be an extremely crazy and hectic summer but I can't wait!!

Besides, lmc told me that all the cool kids delay their honeymoon by a year because the Army has other plans for us. We will totally be part of the cool club now! And bonus...we'll be on the joint air force base in Washington. Helllllllllo Space-A delayed honeymoon to Hawaiiiiiii!

Saturday, April 23, 2011


April 7th at 1:30 AM ended one of the longest years of my life. This deployment is over and Seth's unit is back safe and sound. Every single one of them. (Except maybe the guy who fell off a 10 foot tower during tower duty one night and shattered his foot. He's on crutches, but fine otherwise).

This deployment was infinitely harder for me than the last deployment. For one reason in particular. And it wasn't the distance. Unfortunately, we're used to that. It was the communication, or lack thereof. We're used to being apart, but we talked daily. On weekends, he'd call and wake me up at 9 am. Then we'd get online and we'd video chat. Then we'd talk many times off and on throughout the day. And send emails. That all came to an abrupt halt. He'd been warned that communication would be severely limited and I tried to mentally prepare myself for this. No amount of preparation could do it though. Heck, even last deployment, we talked daily, emailed daily and sent lots of pictures back and forth. Last deployment was very easy compared to this one, even though it was more dangerous. But this time, it was much harder than I could have expected.

Seth deployed on Sunday, April 4th, 2010. Easter Sunday. I went to my parent's house that day and then I stopped by his parent's house. I told his Dad that he left. Seth emailed me when he could, and I emailed him every night as I have been since we started our relationship. I got a call a few days after he left (I'd been sending telepathic messages his way for days, but apparently they weren't strong enough to be received that far away). I remember sighing a huge sigh of relief, just to be able to hear his voice, knowing that he was OK. I was at work and I remember thinking that he sounded really exhausted. I remember wondering if he was sad and missing me, mad at something, just being quiet in a tent full of possibly sleeping soldiers, or just genuinely tired. Or all of the above. Each of our phone calls, for probably the first two months, ended with me crying. I didn't want to. I tried to fight it. I tried to be silent so he couldn't hear the crack in my voice. I let him do the talking and I'd mumble yes or no. Then he'd ask me if I was crying, I'd say no, he'd call me a liar and I'd tell him I can't help it. I just missed him. We only talked on Sunday evenings, before he went to bed, for about 15-20 minutes for the first four months of the deployment. He said he'd be moving to a different location and our communication would improve. I wouldn't believe him till I heard it. By this time, I was getting used to the talking once per week thing (I still didn't like it, but I got used to it). The lack of communication with him was really hard for me to deal with and I went through a mini-depression. I put on a fake smile, fake happy face and fake everything and pretended like I was fine on the outside. One time, I was going out for a friend's birthday and before I got out of my car, I looked in the mirror and said: "put on your happy face." On the inside, I was hurting but wasn't ready to admit it.

Around July, I got my calling card to work, and we had a new routine: I'd call on Wednesday evenings before he went to bed, and he'd still call before he went to bed on Sunday night. This additional talk time helped me get out of my funk. We only webcammed maybe 5-6 times in the whole year he was deployed. Skype never worked for us; gmail video chat did, but it'd work for a few minutes, disconnect, work for another minute or two, disconnect again and then we'd give up trying.

Along with the lack of ability to communicate, we also seemed to argue more than normal. I hate to admit this because, I know, it's an unspoken rule that you don't/shouldn't argue with your significant other while they're deployed. I tried not to. But sometimes, with the added stress for both of us, it was inevitable. We had three bigger than normal arguments for us in the last year. I can only think of one right now and it lasted a good few days... back and forth emails, and he finally emailed me and said he'd call me that night and we'd figure this out. He called me, we made small talk, the phone kept cutting out more than normal (of course, right?) and then finally said, "ok, start talking." We finally resolved it then and there and I know we both felt way better.

Even though we've talked less and argued more in the last year, we've become a lot closer and stronger as a couple. We had many gmail conversations towards the end of this deployment (when the communication improved!) about the future, our lives, our selves, what we want and what we don't want. I wholeheartedly believe that a lot of the conversations we had during this deployment wouldn't have happened if it weren't for this deployment. Being apart has made us closer.

For that reason alone, I would repeat the last year over if I had to, if it meant it'd get us where we are today. I don't regret anything about this deployment, any of the arguments we had. It got is to where we are now, and I wouldn't trade it for the world. (And let's be honest: he re-enlisted while he was in the 'Stan, so we will have more deployments in our future).

Seth - I'm SO glad you're back, even if it means we're separated yet again. We've had a trying year but we made it through, and if we can do that, we can do anything together. I'm beyond excited for the next chapter of our lives to start together. And I've never been more proud of you than the morning of April 7th when this deployment ended for us. I love you!


Today I went to to the mall on a hunt for a gray suit to match Seth's for the wedding. I saw this guy who appeared to be rearranging ties on a display rack like a store employee. I go up to him and start talking to him, telling him my story and what I'm looking for. "I'm getting married in July and I'm looking for a light gray suit and I'm not having any luck..." The guy was getting a small smile on his face as I kept talking and I was thinking in my head he must have had the prefect suit in mind and was getting excited to show it to me.


When I finally paused for a second, he said, "I'd love to help you find a nice gray suit, but I don't even work here!"

Luckily he found it hilarious, while I felt like a major nerd. I told him he threw me off because he was rearranging ties on the display rack and he said he was just putting one back. I couldn't get out of that department fast enough.

Oh humility, you got me today.

P.S. I'm back in Michigan and home and all that good crap. It sucks being home, not gonna lie.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

368 days later....

This deployment is officially over. (As of April 7, 2011 at about 1:30 AM) :) :) :) Seth and his unit returned to Germany and I couldn't be any happier and prouder as I was at that moment.

I've intentionally not posted anything in the last few weeks for security reasons and that was all I could think/talk about. So I have posts written, prior to this deployment ending successfully, but those will have to wait a few more days.

I came to Germany a few weeks ago to be here for the welcome home/homecoming ceremony and it was one of the best days of my life. I have lots of pictures and lots to write about, but I'll be here for a few more days so they will have to wait. I'm already dreading going home.

But for now, all that matters is this deployment is over, we kicked it in the ass, and every soldier in the unit came home. Success it was.

Welcome home babe, and the rest of B Co. Job well done :)