Someone tell me, am I crazy?
We are a few days away from my wife leaving for a TDY(Temporary Duty Assignment) at NTC(National Training Center) and….well…… I am looking forward to it. Does this make me crazy? Or weird?
The first 18 of our 21 months being an Army family were spent apart. During that time I wanted nothing more than to have my wife home with me. With our family. Yet for some reason with her preparing to leave for another 30 days I am kind of excited about it. I am kind of looking forward to it.
Seperation as a military family is expected. We knew there would be TDY’s following her redeployment. For awhile I was angry at the thought that they would take her away from us again. The first time she had to pull CQ Duty(Charge of Quarters/barracks) I was kind of annoyed. That night spent sleeping alone reminded me of the roughly 450 out of 520 nights I had just spent sleeping alone. Parenting alone. Living alone. So why am I looking forward to this extended time away from her? Why am I OK with our family being seperated again?
I can’t say for sure why I am looking forward to this(although leaving the toilet seat up and eating a big ol fatty steak come to mind), but I think it’s because I want this brief reminder of what so many other families are going through with a deployment that lasts much longer and is in far worse conditions than what my wife will be in. I have multiple friends right now with their spouse deployed that I want to relate to. I want to be more empathetic to how they feel. I want to be reminded of how it feels so I can be a better friend to them. Someone who can “kind of sort of but not really” relate to their situation. In a nutshell, I want to be reminded of the Army way of life so I can better appreciate it and the people who serve. The people who serve overseas and the people who serve stateside. Waiting.
Because this is only a month and it is NTC and not a deployment to the Middle East or an unaccompanied tour to a foreign land, it pales in comparison to what others are going through, but for me, it just might be enough. Enough to allow me to put things into perspective.
On top of my desire to feel what my friends(and extended military family) may be feeling, I want to grow closer to my wife. I find to find that appreciation for her and our family that I had while she was gone previously. Over the last 8.5 months since she redeployed, I have definately fallen back into some of my old habits. I no longer long for all the things she does that annoy me, now they just annoy me. And the funny thing about all the annoyances, is they are the things I love most about her. They are the things that complete me.
They say absence makes the heart grow fonder, and I truly believe it does; at least for me. It only took a few months upon her return from Afghanistan that the honeymoon period ended. It only took a few months for me to forget why I missed her so much. And I am really hoping this TDY will rekindle in my heart the compassion, desire and affection for my wife.
So tell me…. am I crazy? Am I the only one who thinks like this?