Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Military Wife

I've missed yet another family wedding. With the Captain away, dogs to deal with, Firstborn in school and Rosemary's Baby...well, Rosemary's Baby, sometimes it's just impossible to be at all the important family celebrations I'd like to be. And it does make me sad. I have four sisters, all married now, and I have managed to make it to exactly one wedding. Sometimes military life just isn't fun.

Those days following a family wedding, the photos start trickling in. It's the family photos, the ones of our side of the family, that tear me up a little inside. I am always the only one missing. Sister #4, the last of the girls in our family to walk down the aisle, may one day experience this for herself. Because now she, too, is a military wife.

But it's not all bad.

The Captain is out in a field in Alberta, riding around in a tank, eating processed, chemically-preserved army rations that have been sitting in their dusty, sealed foil pouches for the better part of the last decade, running for the woods when he needs the bathroom, and unable to bathe or change his clothes for weeks at a time. But, knowing I was going crazy without my computer, he boxed his own laptop back up, addressed it to me and had it sent back to the base, where I picked it up this morning. Sweet, stinky Captain. When he gets home, I'll run him a bubble bath, make him a cappuccino and scrub his back for him.

He has now been gone just over two weeks, and in that time, I've overcome my fever, dealt with puking children, gone 24 hours without running water, put together a child's bike, re-potted all the plants he started for the garden, stripped some of the dining room wallpaper, and just this afternoon discovered my satellite radio antenna may be broken, so I'm looking into what I need to do to get that fixed. And while I admit, I miss my music (and I missed the running water too), I feel a little stronger and more capable every time I get another of these little things under my belt. And that's one of the best things about being a military wife.

Another great thing is that, although you are alone, you really aren't. There are always other wives around to talk to when you get lonely or frustrated and they all know what you're going through. Some of them even know how to keep plants alive. We visit, make phone calls and generally help hold each other up until the time comes when we don't need to any more.

Now, I have one more of those wives to commiserate with, and she's a member of my own family.


Janine said...

I am so sorry that you missed the wedding... If I was closer I would have baby sat!!
You are a good woman too for doing all that you do.!!

Deb Neerman said...

Awww, so sorry you missed your sister's wedding!

And I just have to say that I absolutely COULD NOT do what you do with an MIA DH. I'd off myself ...

God bless ya, girl, I don't know how you do it all!