Two weeks! We made it to the two-week mark!
What a great first week we had! Though communication with Matt was sporadic, it was frequent enough and I was always glad to receive a message/text/call from him. Matt scored first-class seats to his destination… sweet ride! Benefits were space for his long legs and USB outlets to charge his iPad and iPhone.
On our first Sunday at chapel without daddy we had to arrive very early. Two of my boys served a pancake breakfast with the youth to earn money towards summer camp. My kids… going to camp! OH WOW!
Monday we started school after quite a “Christmas break.” Tuesday was awesome! I got to teach FPU for the first time in my life! Matt’s lead it and we’ve gone through it multiple times, but Tuesday morning was the first time I got to introduce the lesson and push play on the DVD player (that’s how simple it is to teach!). I was brimming with excitement and had a great time. I had rehearsed what I would say for weeks prior and then the day of, I wasn’t nearly as smooth in real life as I was in my daydreams! Wednesday was great; Thursday evening I taught my second FPU class… (two simultaneous classes!) and had a great turn-out! Better than I excepted with 35 participants!
Friday was fun as I talked with Aimee for 90 minutes. Such a great way to spend my afternoon. Saturday welcomed our first deployment gremlin but I kicked it in its teeth! The boys were loaded in the van as we were headed to a friend’s house for a birthday party. When I turned the key I immediately learned that the van’s battery was dead! I had everyone switch over to Matt’s Jeep and off we went. Fun times at the birthday party. The other moms there are also wives of deployed Chaplains. After the party and several errands, we returned home. Hayden and I successfully, and quickly, jumped the van off. I let it run for 30 minutes per a friend’s suggestion, and it has run smoothly ever since!
I WAS SO PROUD OF MYSELF!
This may seem like a small feat, but I did it. I was completely aware that I have next door neighbors who would have helped and another family down the road I could have called on had I needed it, but this time, I am happy to say, “I did it!” And I taught Hayden in the process.
Begin week 2. (If you don’t like whining, skip this section.)
Sunday, our second Sunday with out Matt was just fine. Monday, too. Tuesday about took me down. Honestly, the day itself was fine. PWOC went great! My class served all the food for 150+ ladies, set up the serving tables and chairs, and there were no definable problems. There were, however, several stressors that built up in me over the course of Tuesday that zapped every last ounce of early-deployment-adrenaline I was running on. When a deployment starts, we generally have a good deal of patience and endurance. Once the adrenaline is gone, we have to learn to get used to working on a normal amount of energy. (Think: being used to having two cups of coffee each morning and then going cold-turkey to no caffeine… ugly crash…) I made it through the day fairly gracefully to the outside world but my internal world was shaken and I’m not proud to admit that my boys got to see the expression of my internal frustration. I may have spoken too harshly; I may have yelled; I may have given them the leftovers after sharing my best with everyone else. So on top of being stressed, I felt guilt.
Wednesday was a little better than Tuesday; Thursday a little better than Wednesday, and Friday we were almost back on our feet again. Saturday, today, we have been our ‘normal’ selves. I do not like being off. I feel guilty because I know that my kids deserve the best of me and they got the worst. In my defense, they were definitely not giving me their best, either… but since the week progressively got better, I treated them to a special activity after dinner last night. (Got the idea from PJ Jonas in this episode. If you are a regular reader of mine and haven’t listened to her podcast, might I ask why? She’s very inspiring!!) I decided to make a memory, and we roasted marshmallows over the stove and then I made S’mores in the microwave.
- Place a graham cracker on a plate.
- Place two pieces of chocolate on the graham cracker.
- Cook on high about 20 seconds.
- Add marshmallows and microwave 10 more seconds.
- Top with the other half of the graham cracker. YUM!!
Funny: I thought I had regular sized marshmallows but turns out they were mini! It worked, but it was interesting!
I have had some very precious emails and messages come in this week from people all over the world, some of whom I haven’t heard from in years… their words of encouragement and appreciation for our sacrifice really did help me get through the hardest days last week. If you want to know how military wives do it, it’s through the grace of God and because people express their support and appreciation. Anytime you think about sending a note to a military spouse, do it. It very well may arrive on a day that she is at the bottom of her energy reserves.
As for an update on Matt’s situation, he is doing great. He is ready to get into a battle rhythm, a good schedule. He gets to travel to a couple of different destinations throughout the week to see soldiers in more remote places, and this gives him a chance to break up what is potentially a Groundhog-Day-type situation. He is preaching twice and leading worship for three services on Sundays… the highlights of his week for sure! He does have a list of needs and wants. If you what that information, please leave a note in the comments section (or email me). I’ll give you the list and his address!
Okay! Tomorrow starts Week 3 for us! I’m excited to see what this week holds!