This was never going to be an easy post to write, I really debated whether I even wanted to write it but I promised myself I would regularly document the good, the bad and the ugly of being part of a military family and deployment is part of that, no matter how many tears I cry writing!
Today it hurts, my heart actually hurts.
The day before my husband deployed was nothing short of horrendous, I really was on an emotional edge and anything and everything was setting me off, I just intermittently cried through the day. It is like ripping a plaster off, the anticipation is the worst bit and that day felt like it went on forever, it’s like a deployment slap in the face, it is actually here and you are looking up at this huge mountain ahead of you unsure if you can make it to the top.
We went out for a nice meal the evening before he went, took lots of pictures and said “I love you” every sentence. I went to a pretty dark place that night before he went for a moment, the problem I find is when faced with these deployments our minds are under stress and I went to an irrational place where I started to worry he wouldn’t come home safe, OK so there is danger where he is but there is danger in London isn’t there so I have to rationalise or it is going to be a looooong 6 months or so!! Fear is a horrid emotion and sometimes something we can’t control, he talked me down but it is still sitting on my shoulder scaring me.
It is ALWAYS the way that they leave at midnight isn’t it, the dead of night, in his uniform he hugged me in bed and then I heard the door bang as he left, my heart broke as I watched round the curtain him walking to the car to take him to RAF Brize Norton.
The plaster had been ripped off, he’d gone.
The reality is from that point I don’t know when I will see my husband again, I find that really hard because I have no point in time to aim for right now, hopefully in a few weeks we will have some R&R dates which will break the huge chunk of time up.
This initial period is painful, it hurts and you wonder if you will make it through the next week let alone months, but I have been here before and I am reminding myself it does get easier as you find your groove and routine. Even seeing some of his clothes in the washing basket and putting them through the wash made me sad, I won’t be washing his clothes for so many months now.
I’m taking a day at a time, I cancelled Zumba tonight as I just couldn’t face it but I did remember to put the bins out, I didn’t have cereal for dinner again tonight I made myself cook but I did get a parking ticket yesterday….it is going to be ups and downs for a week or so and that really is OK.
It is OK not to be OK sometimes.
Our daughter is binge watching Netflix and I feel like that is her coping mechanism for some escape, I’m here for her and if she wants to chat I am all ears. My husband bought her a book voucher and gave it to her the day he left with a note saying to buy some books to read while he was away, I loved that idea.
So for now I can’t hear a sad song on the radio, I can’t watch a happy couple walking hand in hand down the street and I have already written my first bluey full of I love yous but this horrid feeling of being lost and broken won’t last forever, nothing ever does.
Tomorrow is another day and I am hoping some kind of sleep returns soon as that has been lacking and everything is worse when you are overtired isn’t it. I have been documenting the realities of every day deployment over on Instagram stories and you can follow me for more HERE there are so many of us separated from our military loved ones, sharing really is caring because we are stronger together.
Lots of Love, Louise xx
p.s If you see me PLEASE do not say “oh it will fly by” like some have the last couple of days, right now it makes me want to slap you
p.p.s I did an interview recently for Mental Mutha a site helping us keep the conversation going about mental health, I talked about how deployments can affect emotional well-being, have a read HERE