Escape your life for a little while — come play in mine.

Separation anxiety

Posted by Lissa on August 14, 2009

I haz it.

funny pictures of cats with captions

(Thanks to Borepatch, who sent me the picture.)

One of the things I learned from the run-up to the wedding was that I don’t deal well with change.  Whether it’s changing our provider of car insurance or which version of Windows we use, I have a strong urge to stick with the status quo.  I *know* I should research all the details of new options versus current option, make Venn diagrams, and come to an informed conclusion . . . but really I get overwhelmed, nervous, and uncomfortable.  (One of the many reasons I appreciate Mike is that he’s very good at that — looking up and comparing options for insurance, 401 (k) plans, etc.  Thanks sweetie!)

With that being said, it’s perhaps not surprising that I’ve been ill-at-ease with Mike’s impending six-month departure to Charlotte.

For one thing, we still don’t have final word that he IS going to Charlotte.  We got a step closer on Friday, but it’s still not settled.  For another, more disquieting thing, we don’t know when he’ll leave.  I don’t know whether we’ll get a one week of notice, or two weeks, or three.  I don’t know exactly how long he’ll stay.  I don’t know when he’ll be able to come home, or when I can go visit him.

And to think — I used to be of the opinion that I’d make a decent Army wife!  Yeah, not so much.  If Mike heading off to Charlotte — a very safe city, for a very civilian job — gives me low-down uneasiness because it involves uncertainty and change, I probably don’t have the intestinal fortitude to be an Army wife.

It’s not a super-happy situation, but it does make it better that I’ve learned to recognize this about myself:  I tend to let new developments and anything stressful waft around me in a free-floating, amorphous cloud of anxiety, making it difficult to sleep and causing fatigue.

Better, of course, to address worries and problems head-on.

And better still to use this impending departure as a spur to go take our gun safety courses, the sooner the better.  We’re trying for this weekend.  If we make it, you can expect a report on Monday!


6 Responses to “Separation anxiety”

  1. Jay G. said

    Darn it. I wish I was a certified instructor already, Lissa…

  2. Brad K. said



    Talk to other Army wives – find out what the successful wives do to handle these stresses – you are not the first, it makes sense to find out the “secrets of the trade” from those with experience.

    Above all, do not let a moment go by fretting, that you could be using to support and cherish the time together.

    On amount of notice. Pack now. Figure out what will need to go with Mike, that won’t be needed until departure time, and have it clean and prepped, packed for a half-hour notice. Then that will be out of the way.

    Most jobs have set hours that you cannot use for your own – like, say for visits from family. Military people face different windows of opportunity, sometimes months apart. Figure out now ways to stay in touch and stay connected. Way back 35 years ago snail mail letters made a lot of sense – A good, news letter about friends and family back home would often get passed around, brightening the day for several guys. I guess emails or blog entries would fill that niche, too, but a letter you can carry with you for days or weeks, even when electronic things have to be shut down. I imagine that most any military evolutions – including meetings, marches and physical conditioning, etc. will black out cell phone and computer use for hours and days that the average American would never imagine.

    However you decide to keep in touch, always allow at least three days for a reply – stuff happens, and you aren’t always allowed to warn friends and family you will be out of touch. Write weekly, or daily, and don’t depend on a reply or note more than once or twice a week. This is grossly unfair and hurtful, but also a reality. Accept the unfairness, bless the man with your attention and support because that is something you can to to make his life better, to support the Army, and in a real way, to be a patriot and show your love for your country.

    I know of few tasks Americans take on that are as emotionally trying, as military spouse. Blessed be.

    • Mike said

      The army wife thing was metaphorical. Aside from my “deployment” to Charlotte on short notice (2 weeks from today and for several months), my job is really nothing like being in the military. My battlefields are spreadsheets.

  3. Borepatch said

    It’s tough when you’re away from your family, or when they’re away from you. Skype is your friend, as are webcams. One of my biggest problems when I was traveling all the time was that the kids were small, and just didn’t do well talking on the phone for long.

    I could have spent 3 hours an evening on the phone with home, except this was in the Dark Ages and there wasn’t a good VoIP solution, and they would talk for 30 seconds – kthanxbai.

    Fortunately, you shouldn’t have either of these problems with Mike.

    You also have friends here that would love to take you shooting. You have a standing invitation to come out with Mrs. Borepatch and I, who can give you many, many stories about what it was like with me being gone. Cliff’s Notes version: I messed up her routine when I got back in town … 😉

  4. secretlivesofscientists said

    yes…speaking of standing invitations….I now have 26 moar firearms by association. There are boxes of ammo spilling over into the kitchen, and about 5000 .223 (those be what we shoot out of the AR15) components that Dr. Boyfriend will be reloading, and I’m sure he would happily show you how to make bullets. And then we’d go shoot them, of course. With a ninja and an armoror. You can haz a tacticool lara-croft sytlie thigh holster, too.

    Open invite – anytime you want to get on a plane.

    (and yes, I damn sure am trying to upstage the other invites! I’m wicked jealous that I haven’t gotten to shoot with Lissa. No fair!)


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