Well…. here we are again. My husband has returned to Afghanistan after two blissful weeks of rest and relaxation for all of us.
It’s still fresh in our hearts so we are still in that “numbing” mode that ties us over until we get to the “kinda functioning” mode and then the “deep breath lets get back into routine” mode.
Our goodbye was cut short due to the train arriving at the station early and so the kids and I had a few seconds of goodbye before our Soldier had to board. We were probably a sad sight to the other passengers peering out their windows… the three of us standing there on the platform crying as the train tortuously pulled away.
Once I pulled into the driveway of our home it felt like time stopped. I could feel the pit of my stomach and I could hear myself in my head saying that I didn’t want to be home without him and I just didn’t want to go into the house. Once inside, the silence was deafening. It feels like the life is sucked out of these walls. The kids and I do fine with making our house a home, but after these past few weeks of having my husband home, it just feels numb.
I couldn’t resist and I immediately called my husband as soon as our boots were off. By then he had reached the underground and was waiting for his train to the airport. I quickly took the chance to pass the phone off to the kids so that he could tell them he loved them one more time. Our daughter was first and she just repeated that she missed her Daddy many many times. When our son got on the phone and just simply said that he wanted his Daddy to come back, I choked up.
By the time dinner had rolled around, the house had livened up a little. I did my best to keep the numbness away until bedtime. I put on the best happy face I could conjure and allowed the kids to be as loud as they wanted. I could write forever on how It’s just not the same though.
So… here I find myself. It’s almost 11pm here in Germany and the kids are asleep and the house is dark, quite the opposite of what it’s been like these last few weeks. This might sound weird, but I welcome this silence and the numbness and loneliness that have taken up residence in my heart for the time being. I’ve learned that for me personally, if I fight how I am feeling right now and don’t let it runs it course, than it stays around longer, and I am more miserable. When I let these feelings run their course, I am stronger for it, and am able to be back at 100% for myself and my family soon after the dust settles from our goodbye.
At the end of the day, after 6yrs of goodbyes, this is how my body and heart have taught me how to deal with the constant goodbyes of my husbands career. How do you deal with the silence and loneliness that meet you as soon as you utter those words of goodbye to your loved one? Do you fight them or do you pair up with a pint of ice cream and just put up with the ride?