The Morning is Awake – Part 3

If you’re new here today, this is the last post in a three part series.  If you want to go back and read the first two parts, click here for part one and here for part two.

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Continued…

So, how am I doing today?  I’m definitely much better than I was a few weeks ago when this was too fresh to even share in coherent terms.  I was writing away, but nothing made much sense.  It was all true, but just not quite postable, and I know that’s not a word. WordPress is underlining it in red.  It took me this long to be willing to dig deep enough into it to really mold it into something even remotely worth reading.

I feel almost back to normal.  I’m still not able to get enough sleep no matter how late I snooze, but I’m not nearly as grumpy or irritable.  I feel like I’m back up to about 90%. Having Aimee come visit for 24 hours was very helpful, even if watching her drive away was indescribably tough.  But her visit didn’t do for me what I feared it would do… throw me into a deeper funk.  Praise the LORD!  I had literally dreamed that I told her mom not to let Aimee come because it would be too hard to see her.

I had a fantastic few quiet times with the Lord during which He reminded me that He’s in control, has my back, is in my future, knows my pain, and is my comfort.  Standing on that, I’m doing really well.  I look at it this way:  People are always telling me, “Thank you for your service… I know your husband wears the uniform but thank you for your sacrifice, too.”  Up until now all the sacrifice I’ve offered has been easy.  Traveling to exotic places, adventure around every bend.  And regarding deployment, while it was not fun, it did help us to get a LONG way toward becoming debt free and every two weeks I had a good reminder that we were making progress.  I call it: sacrifice with reimbursement.  This particular move, however, has been a true sacrifice.  I feel like I’ve finally given something up for the sake of my country.  It wasn’t easy, fun, didn’t feel good, and just stinks all around.

The summation of what I miss the most.

The summation of what I miss the most.

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I know of others who have had the experience of deeply connecting with others in Korea, Japan, Alaska, Hawaii, as well as Germany.  (I’m lumping Alaska and Hawaii in this category because, though they are CONUS, they are highly isolated from the rest of the US and offer many of the same aspects of tight-knit-living I’m describing in these posts.)

I know of others who have struggled with coming back from overseas or from otherwise isolated duty stations.

If you have had this experience, what are some of the ways you have healed?  What was your biggest tool to overcome the grief?  What was the “thing” you  missed most about your temporary home?  Did the grief come immediately upon your return or did it hit you a few months after moving back?  Did you feel like anyone understood you or did you feel, like I did, that you were alone in this.  (Sharing what I have so far on my blog and on Facebook has brought me a long way into realizing that this is a very normal grieving process… I just didn’t anticipate it to this degree.)  What advice could we share with those who are facing the same return-adventure so that they will be better prepared to handle their own grief?  I remember after my first baby I went through a period of postpartum blues.  No one had ever told me about this and I felt like the worst mother in the world.  It passed very quickly and I was very sure to tell all my friends, as they started having their babies, that this could happen.  For those who did experience it, they came back and said to me, “Thank you so much for telling me about the blues.  If you hadn’t warned me about it, I think it would have really freaked me out.  Knowing what it was, and that it would end, helped tremendously.”  What would this be called?  Post-overseas-living blues?  No clue, but there’s got to be a way to prepare for it better than I was prepared.

I’ve really started to feel better, almost normal, in the past week.  At this point, I’m starting to feel the fog lifting.  I think a lot of my healing was in the awareness of what was going on.  I’d like to see this grief either prevented in my friends’ hearts as they return or at least some of the edge knocked off.

Thank you for reading along, and I do hope there will be some who share their experiences.  The following poll is just for kicks and none of the questions are required. You can go in and answer just one, or answer them all.  Totally up to you:

 

(Question number seven was supposed to be a “multiple choice, check all that apply.”  For some reason it’s showing up blank.  Funny!)

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For Part 1, click here.

For Part 2, click here.

About Jennifer

"Yes, they're all mine." The answer to the question I hear most often.
This entry was posted in family, friends, germany, military, travel. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to The Morning is Awake – Part 3

  1. Christy says:

    In many ways, I think I’m grieving your PCS too. I didn’t like Germany to begin with, but your absence makes it a bit bleaker.

  2. ellenwit says:

    I didn’t experience a PCS because we’re not in the military, but the hubby and I moved a lot the first 6 years of our marriage. The biggest culture shock was moving from the D.C. suburbs to Birmingham, AL. Oh. My. I felt like I’d landed in a different world. I realized I was cutting people off in traffic all the time because in D.C. a blinker was code for “close the gap between vehicles.” I grew up in the South, but I wasn’t used to it anymore. And this was the DEEP South. The D.C. experience had changed me, and it was really hard to adjust back to regular suburban life. I didn’t feel understood by most people in our environment for the 3 years we lived in AL. It was really, really hard. Now, I was going through infertility at the time in a place where most people got pregnant with a year, maybe 2, of getting married. We had a great community of people who really understood us in D.C. We didn’t have that in AL. So yes, I understand to some extent, and I’ll be praying for you as you adjust!

  3. Having a skill that you practice where ever you are sent can really help. It doesn’t have to be work outside the home for pay. But if you can affiliate with a group and do your thing with each move you will come to anticipate these relocations in a different way. Perhaps you can be a vollunteer with Red Cross, or some other community service. In our moves I wanted to put something back into the off post community because I know that the military community is dependent to some degree on that larger community. I volunteered with child advocy and sometimes hospice. Other times I was a “room mother” at school, a soccer coach (not too enthusiastic on this one) and even a Den Mother. A suggestion to you, would be to see if you can find training to be a Stephen’s Minister. It’s an awesome ministry that is non denominational but started by the Lutherin Church. The skills you gain through Stephen’s will travel with you and soon you will be looking for places to be of service. Just a suggestion…

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