Sunday, January 17, 2010

Perfect Storm

Tonight as I stand changing the clothes from the washer to the dryer I started thinking.
No, don't say your little sarcastic comments. Uh oh shes thinking. No, I don't need anymore negative right now. I was thinking about the life I lead and the life my family leads.

I look at what is required of a military family. I look at what is required as a Stay at home mom. I look at what is required as a Single parent. I look at what is required as a part time wife.

Military family.
Most think we get all these special privileges. Not so much. As a military family we are subject to short term assignments, meaning moving to a place for a very short while only to move less than a year later. Is that easy? You tell me. Want my answer? No! heck no! Does it happen often? Sure it does. Not everyone experiences it, but it happens. Then you must start all over making friends, creating another support group, opening yourself up and figuring out who you can trust and who you can't. You have to run around like a chicken handing pieces of paper called "orders" to everyone on base to prove you have to move and set up a million appointments. Sometimes being a military family requires you to have short notice moves. Where they, The Gov't, hands you these so called "orders" and you have to move sometimes less than 30 days. Most people will never experience the life of a military family. Most people will not have pity for a military family. Most people choose to ignore the strife and struggles of a military family. Most people never listen or care to listen to a military families story.

Stay at home Moms!
Well this is the most thankless job you will ever experience. No seriously, you are on call 24/7/365 without extra pay.
You have to make sure kids are up and get ready for school or you have to get them ready for school. Then you shuttle to school or the bus. You wash clothes and sheets. You cook lunch and dinner. You have to do dishes 3 or more times a day. Your name is called 5 million times a day. You wipe butts. Clean toilets. Clean sinks that get dirty again hours later. You scrub carpets. You pay bills. You forget to shower. You organize cabinets and garages. You make beds and call your friends. You miss your shows and vacuum the carpets. You scrub the tile and wipe down the table. You hug and kiss the ouchies and boo boos. You worry. You wait. You lose yourself to become someones mom. You have to grocery shop. You do laundry and check the mail. You fill out homework sheets and pass out field trip money. You listen to 4 little ones days all at the same time. You help with homework while you haven't seen that in 20 years. You suggest problem solutions. You listen to arguments and settle fights. You discipline and coach the sports team. You do all this and more without a single THANK YOU. You do this without a paycheck. You do this without any promotion or reward. You do this to provide the best for your kids and give them have what you didn't. THE HARDEST MOST SELFLESS JOB IN THE WORLD

Single Parent!
Remember the above paragraph. Now throw in there a traveling, training, hardly at home father and your job just got 10 million times harder because now you have to do it all on your own without any physical support, mental support, or anyone to tell you they are with you and you can do it. Now you have to ask those people you barely know to help you. You have to juggle it all in 2 hands hoping nothing falls while you dance to the birthday parties, field trips, doctor appt's, luncheons, and God forbid hospitals all while dealing with a cranky baby, hungry siblings and poopy pants. FUN!!!

Part Time Wife!
You are never told or taught how to be this, part time wife. How to call or Text without being too nosy or overbearing. You are not taught how to be casual when you are fuming mad at the spouse on the other end of the phone. They don't tell you that you will not hear from your spouse for days sometimes weeks and not worry. You are never taught to be patient and loving when your spouse forgets about you and how your day went. You have to learn and figure out that your needs are never as important as the trips, traveling and training. You are not told about how stressful you make their day. You have to figure out how to be in his life without being there physically. You have to figure out how to stay positive when you feel less than and completely 2 inches tall. You have to figure out how to be the shining light 250 or 5000 miles away. You have to learn not to expect a Thank you. You have to learn how to deal with the sarcasm when all you needed or wanted was sympathy. You have to be ready for them to come home early. You have to be willing to cancel plans when they get called out early. You have to learn to wash their laundry with lightening speed when they are only home 18 hours. You have to squash any expectations for birthday's or Anniversaries because they are not THAT important. Being this PT wife has got to be one of the hardest things you will ever do.

All of these things are tough. But when you put all of these things together you just stepped in my life for a brief minute. Yes, I am a military family, stay at home mom, Single parent and part time wife. All of these things can be amazing. They can be humbling. All of these things can also combine to become the perfect storm.

I am grateful to be a wife and mother. I am grateful for having a husband that cares for his family and has a job. Don't get me wrong things could be a heck of a lot worse. But I think if they were worse I may not be here. What I am getting at is that today I am feeling powerless, helpless, unappreciated, nameless, and downright dumb.

I have come to the conclusion that I must surrender my hopes and dreams for myself. My children's hopes and dreams have to come first. My Husbands job will always determine where I live, what I live in, the kind of schools my kids go to and how much he sees us. It is never easy. I hope that one day I can come to gripes with this conclusion. I would like to accept it with open arms instead of it being shoved into my tightly crossed arms.

Lord help me release the Ice skating, counseling, photography and travel. Help me accept the snot, puke, dirty nails, and showerless days. Until then please keep this Perfect Storm from gathering steam and moving into the next low pressure area over my head.


Anonymous said...

My goodness, this makes me cry because for the past few days- it is me to a T. I hope since you wrote this you have been having at least some better days. I am excited to meet you in person adn join you in Biloxi- only we will wait until June so the kids can finish their school year in place.