It’s Not Goodbye, It’s See You Later

Time: the indefinite continued progress of existence and events in the past, present, and future regarded as a whole

Time began take on a whole new meaning the moment my husband swore into the United States Navy.  Time became very precious to me and a very real thing that seemed almost tangible.  Time is often thought of as the amount of time someone has, such as the amount of time someone has together calculated by seconds, minutes, hours, etc.  But time became much more than seconds, minutes, hours, and days…It became about moments and memories and turned out to be the greatest gift of all leading up to my husband’s departure.  75 days later, after my husband swore in, we no longer had those seconds, minutes, hours, or days left with each other, but instead, we only were left with our memories and the moments we had created together.  The time had come for my husband to leave for basic training.

Nothing anyone could have said to me would have prepared me for the deep sadness I felt the evening I hugged my husband goodbye.  Leading up to the moment we said “see you later”, we spent the afternoon playing games, cracking jokes with each other, and talking about the future at the hotel he had stay at with the other men and women shipping out. As it became closer and closer for me to leave, the tears started to flow and couldn’t be stopped.  My husband knew that words would have brought no comfort for me and so all we did was sit on the couch together with his arm around me and my head on his shoulder as the tears streamed down my face, and that was simply all that was needed.  He was holding me together because I felt like I was going to break.  Sometimes words are not what someone needs, but just the presence and the touch of someone is what a moment rquires.  Almost 2 1/2 months later, I can still feel the hug, remember the look on my husband’s face as he walked away, feel the cold air, see the scenery around me, and relive the emotions from the moment we said goodbye.  Except, it wasn’t a “goodbye”, but a “see you later”.  There were a lot of tears, a lot of “I love yous”, and a drawn out hug that neither party wanted to end.  Even now, thinking back on that moment brings tears to my eyes.  So many emotions are mixed into a moment like that.

The moment I got into my car and drove away from my husband time changed for me.  It no longer was about the moments and memories anymore like it should have been, but it became about the seconds, minutes, hours, and days again.  My partner, my best friend, my husband was gone for 2 months and all I could focus on was time.  How many weeks left?  How many days left?  The first few days were the hardest and the thoughts of time seemed to never stop, and for those new MILSOs out there reading this, prepare to cry… a lot.  I cried everyday for the first few days after my husband left and wished desperately that it would get easier.  I NEEDED it to get easier for me to stay sane.  When was time going to change back into the memories and moments like it had been before?





Life is Funny Like That

There’s moments in life where you think you have life all figured out.  You make plans, set goals, and have a general idea of what is to come over the next few years.  When I married my husband, I thought just that.  I thought I knew what life would be like for us.  We always talked about where we would be in 1 year, 5 years, and so on.  But that’s just it…they were simply just thoughts and conversations, nothing more.  On September 22nd, 2016 life threw a pretty big curve ball that drastically changed everything.  My husband swore into the United States Navy to become a Sailor.  He wanted a steady life for us and to make a difference in the world.  But if you were to ask him, he’d probably tell you that he just wants to kick ISIS’s [butt].  My husband signed a contract, raised his right hand, swore to defend the Constitution and I stood by and felt proud to say that man was my husband.  All it took was a few minutes and just like that life did a 180 and would never be the same as we once new it to be.  But that’s what makes life exciting, right?

I remember the night like it was yesterday when my husband and I sat down to dinner and he began to tell me his interest in joining the military.  I had just come back from a short 5 night trip to Atlanta to visit a friend.  We had NEVER been apart for a single night up until that point after a year of marriage.  We decided that we didn’t like the distance and were glad to be home with each other again. To think that we thought 5 nights was a long time away from each other makes me laugh!  He talked about his interest in the military the night I got home, but it seemed like only that…an interest.  I could see something in his eyes that night, however, a desire to do something different with his life and so I encouraged him to find more information out, take the next step.  You know, be a nagging wife!  I was so proud of him for even just the thought and encouraged him over the next few days to begin the process of talking to a recruiter.  A few days later papers were signed and he was on his way to MEPS to swear into the reserves until his ship date.  It was easy to be caught up in the moment and the excitement of my husband’s new career choice.  As the days went by I slowly realized what this would do to our life, our simple and very normal life we had been so used to.  I began to think about my husband leaving for Basic Training at Great Lakes Naval Base and what that all would entail, an inevitable move after training, the switch from civilian life to military life, just to name a few and the thoughts began to bog me down so all I could do was push them aside and just be excited for my husband.