Today, I don’t want to rally. I will, of course, because I have commitments on Camp Pendleton today with a group of military spouses that matter deeply to me; one of the few things that keep me caring about military life at all lately. But today my tired, worn out heart cannot catch up to the demands of the Navy.
Not again, not today.
Last night Jake and I joined some friends around a bonfire at Moonlight Beach and I was feeling deeply satisfied, full of fish tacos and laughter; grateful for the brief reprieve from the kids and dishes piling high at home. Little pieces of me that had been scattered everywhere by life alone with two boys under three were slowly making their way back together as I sat listening to old stories and the roar of the ocean. I felt whole for an entire minute, just before Jake leaned in close and told me:
“They told us about our upcoming underways today.”
I can’t share when LTJG Husband will be gone (OPSEC), but I can and will say: He is going to be gone a whole lot these next few months, and I just cannot even today. I won’t rally because I would almost rather he deploy. When Jake deploys, I prepare myself. I prepare the boys. When I know he is deploying, I don’t make commitments, I don’t overextend myself. Lately, we’ve made the mistake of thinking Jake would be around; we said ‘yes, absolutely’ to things we needed in our lives, believing we’d be able to follow through.
We made the mistake of letting ourselves get connected, of letting ourselves get hopeful.
We’ve spent a few months playing make-believe civilians who have time for church groups and children’s birthday parties and spring cleaning and barbecues with family and (ha) making vacation plans. It makes my heart ache knowing Jake does it all for me. He sees my heart being wrung out week after week raising these boys without him, exhausted and discouraged. He sees me losing myself bit by bit and he musters and says, “Let’s say yes to _____ and maybe we’ll feel okay again.”
Now, Jake will leave again for weeks on end and I will be left holding the shreds of our optimistic commitments together.
Even as I write this, I know that at some point today I will rally. At some point, the kicking-screaming tantrum inside will subside. I will dive deep into God and beg for enough of whatever I need, I will reach out to my girls and admit that it just hurts so much to see him miss more of our lives and they will say ohgirlIknowitdoes and one deep, ragged breath later, I will make myself forget about all the things I need and I will rally.
““Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”