Whenever my husband travels, we tell our kids that he’s going “on a trip.” We don’t use acronyms, and we don’t typically use any variation of the word deploy. “On a trip” just sounds so much more innocuous, both to the kids’ ears and my own.

Last week, Mr. Roller Coaster went “on a trip.” It’s not one of his longer trips, but it’s not one of his shorter ones either. And for some inexplicable reason, this goodbye hit me harder than I expected.

Maybe it’s because of the stress I’ve been dealing with at work lately. Maybe it’s because Little C and I both have colds. Maybe it’s because I’ve been spoiled by having him home for so long. Whatever the reason, this trip feels different. I’m dreading the quiet as I get ready for work without hearing him frantically search for his car keys or his cell phone. I’m dreading eating dinner without exchanging stories from our days at work. And I’m dreading the exhaustion of being a single parent after working all day.

This is the longest trip he’s had to go on since I went back to work. Last year when he was deployed, I was a stay-at-home mom, and I forced myself to stay busy so I wouldn’t dwell on his absence or the calendar. Now that I’m working, I almost feel like I have the opposite problem. I’m too busy! And I can’t decide which extreme makes these trips easier.

I usually allow myself to wallow in self-pity for a day or 2 after he leaves so I took a mental health day off from work last week. I dropped the kids off at school, watched more tv than I usually watch in an entire week, took a nap, read half a book, and ate too much chocolate. Add a relaxing weekend on top of that, and I think I’m ready to snap out of my pity party.  Life goes on.

Time to put on my Super Mil Spouse cape.

15 Comments on On a Trip

  1. Sending prayers, sweet friend. I wish I could offer some physical help….but prayers overcome that on many days. I can not imagine how those words impact your heart. You are brave and so wise to protect your children with the 'trip'. Please know, as a family whose served (before children), we honor your family and appreciate the way you and your children serve with your husband!

  2. I'm glad to hear you took a day off from work to allow yourself to just relax and wallow for a little bit. I made the mistake of going into work the day Mr. I left for his first deployment. Wow, that was a mistake! I have since always taken a day off.

    ((hugs)) You'll do fine and you'll get into your new routine and time will fly.

  3. Dropping a line just to say "hi" from a blogger friend and give you a cyber hug. Hang in there. Don't be afraid to ask others for help! 🙂

  4. Many hugs! I think the taking mental health day was a great idea. Gave you time to process on your own time. And hey, I fully believe chocolate is the best medicine sometimes 🙂 Will be thinking about you!

  5. *hugs*

    I cannot imagine what the 'trips' are like for kids. You wear that cape proudly and know you have lots of readers rooting for you!

  6. Your pity day style is pretty standard for me too… I add a lil' wine to my equation! You have to allow yourself to feel it for a little bit, and then regroup for your family! You will all do great! If you need a little shoulder to lean on, try reading Sara Horn's new book, Tour of Duty http://www.sarahorn.com/ or let me know. You will be in my prayers. Happy almost spring!! 🙂

  7. We also tell our kids that daddy is going on a "trip" and they know the difference between trips depending on where he leaves from.

    ((hugs)) to you while he's gone.

  8. I hate those "trips." I hope things are looking up for you now. You will find your groove this time, just like you did last time. Then he'll come home and mess it all up again. 😉

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *