Nearly 6 Months Later…My How Things Have Changed!

I was reminded this morning when I logged into my yahoo account that this blog existed and was in terrible need of updating.  My most sincere apologies to those who follow this, and I will try my hardest to keep this more up to date!

Let’s see. My last post was 4 days before my husband Joe left for his deployment…that would be the same day that I found out that I was pregnant…again! Yep, 4 days before my husband left for an 8-9 month deployment we found out we are expecting another bundle of joy. I am going to be honest here and say that we were supposed to be done at 2 kids. 2 boys! When I read the pregnancy test and went crying out to Joe about the injustice of life, I was completely serious! I didn’t want another kid, unless it was a girl of course. We were nice and settled in our little family. Our kids sleep through the night, they respond to basic commands, eat grown-up food (for the most part). To add another baby to the mix would throw off the dynamic.

Well, 4 shell-shocked days later, Joe got on a plane headed for war torn locales and I was left 5 weeks pregnant with a 5 and 2 year old. Can you talk about a rude awakening? We were moving into summer time and my morning sickness was in full force. Right now I can’t really tell you how I made it through the first 3 months with both kids home and begging for stimulation and attention…and me barely able to lift my head from the toilet and fix them breakfast. There is probably some sort of post traumatic stress trigger that will bring it all back in a few years. But we did it. We made it through a hot and muggy Virginia summer with minimal bloodshed.

In the beginning of August I opted to do a 3d ultrasound to determine the sex of the new baby. I was seeing pink…I assumed after 2 boys that I would be blessed with a beautiful baby girl. I went into the ultrasound with the serene smile of a mother in the know and walked out fighting back tears. You guessed it, another boy. Now I have had almost 3 months to come to terms with another boy and I think I am doing well. We have decided on a name, a family member had a boy less than a year ago so we have tons of new clothes for him. I have resigned myself to the fact that I will be the only female in my house. So long as everyone is happy and healthy.

Due to the new addition, the military is moving us into a 4 bedroom house in a neighborhood down the street. We move on Halloween. So on top of being nearly 7 months pregnant, my house is boxed up and somehow I am going to have to figure out how to dig up the satellite dish so housing doesn’t have a panic attack. My husband doesn’t come home until either right before or right after the baby comes (we still don’t have a firm homecoming date). You can say life took a hard left turn…or right turn…whichever your fancy, but being the military family that we are we are dealing with it the best we can.

If anyone is still reading this, I am so sorry I stopped blogging for a while but as I have been writing this I have realized that really is a good outlet. Especially for someone who only talks to children all day and spends her nights worried sick about her husband.

Neglectful Blogger.

Yes, I have been a neglectful blogger lately. I do apologize to those who were waiting with baited breath for my next entry…sarcasm of course! It has been a hectic couple of weeks. My husband has his pre-deployment leave last week and we went to Las Vegas for some grown up R&R. We had a fantastic time…spent too much money and got much too drunk! By the time the last day of our vacation rolled around we were begging to get on the flight back home.

Joe leaves soon. VERY soon. I am an emotional wreck. My kids are emotional wrecks. We found out a few weeks ago that his platoon was sending him to a week-long training course for a week. Of course they scheduled it for the week before he leaves for his 8 month-long deployment. So if we get technical, I have 4 more days with my husband. My oldest son Scott is so mad at me. Since Joe left for training a few days ago, he has been accusing me of “making daddy leave because I am so mean.” He thinks that his daddy doesn’t want to be his daddy anymore.

We are trying to be honest and open with the kids, letting them know that their dad is leaving for a while but he still loves them…all that song and dance. But my son Scott is so sensitive, he thinks he did something wrong. My heart breaks for him. As much as I tell him that Joe still loves him, it doesn’t make any difference to him. This is just something that our family is going to have to power through, and we will. We have gone through so much already, and I think it only makes us stronger.

So as you can see, I have been slightly preoccupied the past few weeks. Things will pick back up after we get this show on the road next week! Oh- and please forgive the serious, slightly whiney nature of this post. I feel strangely comfortable whining to complete strangers rather than my family. They don’t need any more whining 🙂

Allergies and the East Coast

I have terrible allergies. I mean really bad. I grew up in Colorado, near Boulder, so allergies there weren’t too terrible. The air is really dry and arid so allergy sufferers normally don’t have such a bad time of it. When we moved to the east coast for the military, I really didn’t think much of it. That was until one April morning, 3 years ago, when I woke up with a balloon instead of a head.

I remember looking outside and seeing the world blanketed in a soft, yellow pollen. I had NEVER seen anything like it. Our black car was yellow. Our green house was yellow. The dog was yellow. Another fun fact about me…I can’t take allergy medicine. I mean I can, it works, but it makes me so sleepy that I can’t be trusted to take care of my kids if I take it.  This being said, I washed my face and made sure to clear the pollen from my nostrils and eye sockets (how did it get into the house??) and started my day.

I think my youngest was maybe 3 or 4 months old so I wasn’t getting much sleep or rest time as it was. My husband was working the night shift at the naval hospital, so I was on my own. Even though there was pollen all over the place, it was still a really nice day outside. North Carolina in the springtime is beautiful. It’s not so painfully hot yet. Now remember I had no experience with pollen or anything like that so I happily got my kiddos dressed and took them out to the park.

Big mistake. I stepped out of my front door and started sneezing. My stroller made tracks through the pollen on the sidewalk. My eyes were watering, my throat was itching, my nose seemed to be running and stuffed up at the same time. I did manage to make it to the park, let my oldest play for about 7 seconds and then had to call the outing to a close.

I hacked my way back home, stripped off my clothes and stumbled snottily into the shower. The water ended up running yellow, that is how bad this pollen was. I called the doctor who gave me a prescription for an allergy medicine (which is now available OTC I think). This too made me fall asleep.

Now that we are in Virginia, the allergies aren’t any better. We had a pollen snowfall a few days ago so everything is again coated in that nasty stuff. I still can’t take allergy medicine unless I am planning on going to bed the second the pill hits my stomach. My husband and children are completely immune. They could go and make pollen angels outside and be fit as a fiddle. I would probably die from asphyxiation. Next duty station: somewhere with a low pollen count.

Wearing Rank.

Ah…wearing your spouse/significant other’s rank. It’s something that nearly EVERY military wife has done at some point. Yep, even me. I won’t admit to it often but sometimes it’s hard not to. Now, I always feel like I should do a little background explanation for those of you who aren’t living the military lifestyle. When a spouse “wears the rank”, it really means that they are using their husband (or wife’s) staus in the military to better their social lives. I had been warned about this before I got married, but brushed it off.

My first experience with a military wife wearing her husband’s rank was when we had just moved to Camp Lejeune. Jacksonville, N.C. is a total military town. It has Wal Mart (two of them!), bars, strip clubs, tattoo shops. Weird things go on there. I have heard rumors about a midget strip club night at one of the popular clubs down there. Of course, we didn’t know any of this when we moved there. We had wanted to get in base housing but the wait was a few months so while we waited we rented a townhouse out in town. It was a pretty crappy place, had a lot of “waterbugs”, a.k.a. roaches, neighbors were all kind of trashy. Jesus, I sound like a spoiled brat.

I had taken my son Scott to the park in the community. It was summertime and hotter than hell, I must have been covered in sweat. Not looking my best, I’m sure. A mother and her son came up to us and her son started playing with Scott. As mothers do, we carefully tested the waters to see if we had anything in common. Turns out we did…both of our husbands were in the military. Once this was discovered, she started into the military wife inquisition. This is where they ask what branch your husband is in, what rank he is, what he does in the military, how old you are, and how long you have been married. They keep a mental scorecard in their heads, checking off each answer, and using that to judge your “worth” in the heirarchy of military wives.

Unfortunately, I failed that test. If that had been the old days, I would have been the scruffy maid milking the cows in the barn. My answers were as follows: husband is in the navy, he is only an E1, he is a corpsman, I am 22, we got married 3 weeks ago. Suddenly her friendly face turned stony. I will always remember the way she curled up her lip at me and snapped at her son to come here and that they were going home. She literally took her child by the arm and towed him out of the park, away from the contamination of my virginial military wife status.

I was so offended. I couldn’t understand what happened. I was a generally likeable person. I had friends! Hell, someone liked me enough to marry me…why didn’t she want her kid to play with mine? I kept this experience to myself, always wondering what I had said wrong. After I spent a little more time in my new role as military wife, I began to understand (but definitely not condone) that woman’s thoughts.

Camp Lejeune is not a naval base. It is a Marine Corps base. The only naval people there either work at the hospital, with the platoons as a field corpsman, or in the administrative side. The fact that my husband was not a marine was my first fail. Secondly, he was an E1. Fresh out of boot camp. No rank, no respect. Next, I was too “young”…a sterotypical fresh, young military wife. Lastly, we had only been married 3 weeks. This I don’t understand, everyone has to start somewhere!

Now that I am a seasoned military wife, I have caught myself doing this…the military wife inquisition. I always stop myself before I finish, knowing that this could be a young, new wife who is lonely in a new duty station. I have often told my husband that I want him to go officer so I can be saluted when I drive through the gates on to a military base 🙂 Or so I can park in the primo spots at the commissary. But I would never treat another wife so disrespectfully. Even girlfriends deserve respect, because a military girlfriend is only a few steps away from a military wife.

A Foray Into Blogging…

Ok, who hasn’t googled some random question and had a bunch of blog posts pop up? I know I have. I am a google freak. Any question I have gets googled. My husband calls me the queen of google. I digress…My thoughts this morning were, “Why can’t I have a blog that comes up in a google search to quench some thirsty web questor?” Well, why not? Et voila, I am now a blogger. True I have no followers, no facebook likes or visitors to my blog, but I have taken the first step.

I love to read. When I say that I love it, I mean I LOVE IT. I will read anything: the back of cereal boxes, those dumb advertisements that come with my daily bills, the dictionary…you get the picture. When I was younger I wanted to write a novel. I dreamed of being the next J.K. Rowling or Judy Blume (to my younger readers; she was a pioneer in teen girl novels). I soon realized that I am a total procrastinator. I would write 3 chapters, be covered in ink and in love with my characters, and then all of a sudden lose interest. I must have a dozen unfinished novels laying around in my moving boxes.

Blogging seems like it could be a way for me to jot down snippets of writing, to express myself, without having to commit to writing hundreds of pages of flowing story. Eh, maybe someday I will get around to it.

My life around here can get pretty boring. No joke. I go to school online, so when I am not procrastinating with my schoolwork, or googling some inane question, I am attempting to become a teacher. Preferably I want to teach history, although my degree is in Interdisciplinary Studies K-8 grade. I figure it will give me more options when I actually begin to teach. When I am not studying, I am taking care of my two boys. Scratch that, I am taking care of them while I study. Those boys go, go, go 24/7. Since my husband works extremely long hours, and often is gone weeks or months at a time, I get most of my conversation from my kids, or from Facebook. Sometimes I mix up the two and when my oldest, Scott, comes home from preschool with a project, I go to press the “Like” button. Yep, I admitted it. Go blogging!

So be warned that this blog may be full of mommy stories (sorry, but if you are a mom you get it), funny stories about drama on Facebook, or recaps of catty mom moments at the elementary school bus loop (there are a bunch of those). Try and meander over to my “About Me!” section (if you don’t aleady know me) to get a sort of back story. But don’t worry, like all good authors, I will make sure nobody gets lost when they read my posts 🙂

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