My latest Blue Star Families post:  


Dear Deployment,

I’ve been writing letters to my husband, and I thought it only fair to write a letter to you as well. After all, you are currently the most omnipotent presence in my life. I can’t ignore you. I can’t escape you. Even censuring you with unladylike profanity doesn’t deter you from hanging around. Like a long-lost acquaintance in need of a place to crash, you have taken up residence in my life without giving me any indication as to your exit strategy. So I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s in my best interest to accept you. But before I can fully accept you, I need to ask you for a few favors. You have to admit you owe me.

Thanks to you, my cell phone is permanently attached to my body like an extraneous appendage. I can’t leave my house without worrying that I’ll miss a call from my husband. I learned my lesson the first time I missed a call while I foolishly took out the trash unaccompanied by my phone. But even when I’m home, I think you purposely orchestrate phone calls so they come when I’m least prepared to receive them. I’m cleaning the toilet, I’m preparing dinner and have raw chicken juice dripping from my hands, or I’m on the other line with Fios tech support after waiting 20 minutes on hold. Favor #1: Can you work on the timing of phone calls so (a) I’m able to talk to my husband without fellow Wal-Mart customers eavesdropping and (b) I’m not in the powder room when the phone rings?

You’re also forcing me to violate fundamental personal rules. I swore I’d never resort to fast food on those nights when cooking dinner for one adult seems too daunting. But my children now have an enviable collection of Happy Meal toys. I swore I’d never neglect my housekeeping duties. But you’ve made it so easy to let the house go when the only people who see it proudly vie for the title of messiest room. And I swore I’d never invite another man into my bed. But my 6-year-old son has somehow suckered me into weekly sleepovers. Favor #2: Can you please allow me to hold onto my vow not to cuddle with my husband’s pillow? I think he’ll be jealous when he gets home.

Furthermore, because of you, I have developed a rather unpleasant addiction. To country music. My family is well aware of my aversion to country music, a genre I’ve always deemed sappy and whiny. But the other day, I found myself pressing the #8 preset button in my car, the button my husband surreptitiously programmed to a country radio station just to irritate me. And when I lingered a little too long on preset #8, my son chimed in from the backseat, “Why are you listening to country music Mom? Is it because it makes you think of Dad?” Favor #3: Can you cure me of my spiraling addiction? No hurry. Just make sure I’ve completed the 12-step program before my husband comes home and pokes fun of me.

And then there are the weekends. Under normal circumstances, the anticipation of weekend family time and relaxation is enough to get me through the week. However, since your arrival, weekends are prolonged and tiresome. Without my husband here to entertain the kids, the house echoes with fierce declarations of, “Mom, I’m bored!” Favor #4: Can you find a way to skip the weekends?

Thank you in advance for your cooperation. And I thank you for the favors you’ve already granted me, such as teaching me that mowing the lawn can actually be the perfect opportunity for introspection and that putting both kids to bed isn’t a challenge, but a time of bonding I now look forward to. Although I’ve become accustomed to your presence, at some point you’re going to overstay your welcome, and I will gladly say farewell when you decide to leave us. I hope you don’t take offense when I don’t invite you back for a return visit.


Wife on the Roller Coaster

PS—One last request. Favor #5: Can you please send my husband home soon? A pillow is no substitute for the real thing, and my other man hogs the covers.

What would you say if you could write a letter to Deployment?

15 Comments on Dear Deployment

  1. Love this post! I hear ya about the cell phone becoming part of your body. My computer became my sleeping partner…just in case my husband got onto skype. I didn't want to miss him! It is strange waking up next to your laptop every morning. Oh deployments…

  2. OMG totally made me cry! I miss most of the same things you do. And I may borrow you idea and do my own deployment letter

  3. Wonderful post – I hope deployment reads this and sends your husband home soon, before your son gets too comfortable in his new sleeping quarters 🙂

  4. I am finally back infront of the computer again after recovering from my surgery! I've been keeping up with your blog from my handy dandy Iphone, but was unable to post comments.

    I absolutely LOVE this post!!!!! VERY VERY well written! I wish all our husbands could come home. Sending you hugs, because another day down, is another day closer:)

  5. Hi! I'm new to your blog and I have to say I just love it. This post pretty much sums up everything we all probably wish we could say. I hope you don't mind if I visit your blog from time to time.

  6. I loved this post, and can I just say I am right there with you on the phone call timing! My husband is on a ship and for some reason when he tries to call my cell phone it doesn't work, so were stuck with using land lines. I am always worried that when I leave the house he will call and thats already happened twice this week!! Its pretty crappy and is getting very old! 🙁 Anyway i loved your deployment letter! 🙂

  7. oh my word you couldn't have said it more perfect! I could've written this myself as I have experienced every one of those feelings.

  8. What a wonderful post, and oh, so true! My cell phone becomes another appendage when he deploys. My heart nearly broke when I missed that first phone call. Unfortunately, life doesnt suspend just because he's gone, and I must continue to carry out daily activities instead of just sitting by the computer with my cell phone in my hand.

  9. No way! I think we share brain waves. I have a list of things I will be writing about if/when I ever get the extra money needed to get to the museum to visit which is a requirement for MY first post at BSF and this is one of them. Only slightly differing of course. Man you threw off my groove!

    Seriously though, loved it!

  10. Really, country music – oh dear! Maybe you could try some rock ballads instead. The rest is the same the world over. Grrr…there is nothing more frustrating than a missed call. It's like constantly running and feel you are going to trip and stumble fast forward.

  11. I have to tell you again how much I LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog. I can spend hours on here just reading. Anyhow, I am "borrowing" your Dear Deployment idea. We are hitting 1 month into this deployment and I started typing some stuff up, I came across this and it just fit with some of the stuff I had typed out.

    Thanks for the inspiration!!!

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