by: Amanda Raymond
We are four months into a 13 ½ month deployment and I decided to share my four most important lessons learned thus far:
1. Get in Shape – Physically filling the role of both parents is EXHAUSTING!! If you have ever chased after two children or you didn’t quite lose all your pregnancy weight, you know exactly what I mean! Usually, you are running in a million different directions, so you physically need the strength and stamina to make it through each day … and when all else fails … Coffee and Chocolate are your best friends!
2. Stick to a Routine – Find a routine that works for you … and have the kids in bed by a specific time because you definitely will need time for yourself. I use the time to unwind, sometimes finish up a few chores that I needed to get done or even just relax while talking with my husband on the phone. THIS IS A MUST!!
3. Share your struggles – Some people will tell you not to complain about things or share ‘bad’ news with your spouse … but let me tell you, if you don’t complain and pretend everything is fine, they WILL KNOW something isn’t right. We face challenges everyday, from car trouble to power outages to sick kids, that’s life and if I don’t admit to things being tough, Gary knows! And just because he’s gone, doesn’t mean that I stop sharing my life … when I cry because I miss him or I’ve had a bad day, he always knows just what to say to make me feel better... Always has, always will.
4. Hope for Tomorrow – Scarlett O’Hara said in Gone With The Wind, “Tomorrow is another day.” And it definitely is. Of course, savor your happy times, but when you have a bad day, you have tomorrow to start over. TOMORROW ALWAYS BRINGS NEW HOPE. And if you look on the bright side, tomorrow is one day closer to homecoming!