December 20, 2012
I believe that everything happens for a reason. We may not understand it at the time, but later on, something will happen, and you'll be like, "Ohhh! I see now."
I think that's is what has happened with Jeff traveling.
Here's what I mean.
I have never been comfortable in my own skin. I have suffered from low self esteem and never really had the confidence to do things on my own. I somehow became stubbornly independent, not ever asking anyone for anything.
A few months after Colin turned two, Jeff got a job with a Japanese company. His first job duty - training in Japan. He would leave the first part of November and return the day before Christmas Eve. Needless to say, being home alone with a 2 year old was all but uneventful. Our heat went out (several times) and Colin even locked himself in the bathroom with the bath water running. There was Christmas shopping to do. Work went on. Programs to attend. And a winter storm (ice and all). Life in general just didn't stop when he hopped on that plane.
That's the way it began.
Jeff started traveling a lot for work. Japan. Chicago. Los Angeles. Detroit.
Then he joined the Army. And you know how that goes. Ft. Jackson. Ft. Bliss. Baltimore. Virginia Beach. Afghanistan.
Time apart became a normal thing for us.
I learned a lot about myself. God provided opportunities for me to grow whether I liked it or not. At first, it was like being a single mom of one child. Then a single mom of two. Now a single mom of 3. I had our home responsibilities to take care of. Children to rear. A full time job to work. I lost a grandparent while Jeff was away. I had a flat tire out of town. Our electricity messed up in our house. Our heat and cooling unit messed up. You name it. It probably happened.
I think all of that "stuff" helped pave the way for this deployment. We've been apart for extended periods of time before. I've had to be the one in charge before. That has made this transition easier. I wasn't totally out of my element.
But of course all separations are different. They all bring their own challenges.
We are a little over a month into this deployment. Our household has experienced the stomach virus (for two weeks. I lost 7 pounds because of it!). Currently we are (hoping, praying, fingers crossed) getting over the flu/rsv/pneumonia which caused all of the kids to miss their Christmas programs and Christmas parties. We have a leaky roof (that we thought was fixed before Jeff left). Our heating unit continues to mess up (we were told it would until we put in a new one because the other people didn't do it right).
The thing I see is that God prepared me for this in a way I never expected. He knew what needed to happen before this deployment. He knew how to strengthen me. He knew how to help me gain confidence. He opened my heart on how to bless others when they want to bless me. I can say, "Yes, I need help." I can let people do things for me without feeling guilty (its a pride thing).
God works in ways we can not understand. If you are going through something and you just don't get it, TRUST God. He is in it. He is in control of it. He will see you though it. He is preparing you for something great. Ok. Deployment isn't great, but you know what I mean!