Post # 1
Hi Bees. So I want to preface this straight away by saying that “DH is not in the military.” However, we work in an international setting that basically involves war zones. We’ve spent the last two years in Afghanistan.
Long story short, DH has started a private company and has been offered a very good contract this summer. In fact, it’s a place that he’s been writing about and studying for years. He’s also done some pro bono work for them over the last year which has led to this gig. It’s 3 months, and is already kicking up some momentum in terms of press and future work other places.
The problem. It’s super dangerous. Like, one of the most dangerous places in the world. And while he’s not specifically fighting (at all- it’s different work), the amount of danger he is in will be at least par but probably more than faced by the average Coalition Soldier in Kandahar on a given day. I don’t mean that condescendingly or competitively, but as a frank “this is the situation” kind of way.
How the hell do you all DO IT?! Seriously. I am so freakin’ worried and I’m not even there yet. He’s been there for no more than 6-8 day stretches before and I was somewhat of a mess. The last time he was there his car no sooner past a building (mosque I think) and turned the corner when it blew up. Seriously like 10 seconds later. they weren’t targeting DH but holy $#@!. He just actually admitted this to me the other day, actually (over 6 months later.)
So, seriously… Can I have some tips for how to stay sane during all of this? What is a reasonable amount of worry and what is too much? We’re working on transitioning out of Afghanistan (and extreme danger places) so I’m going to spend the summer in Michigan with friends and family for the first time in five years. That will help, and I’ll be working out and job searching. But.. dunno.
I guess this might just be a vent, but any concrete examples of helpful coping mechanisms would be so insanely helpful. Our life is so beautiful and happy (for the most part, we’re real people so we have problems) that I just can’t help but worry it might all end in a second.
Post # 3
@Mrs.LemonDrop: *HUGS* I don’t have any advice, but I applaud all the military bees here. I would drive myself crazy, and I think it takes a special kind of person to do that.
Post # 4
@Mrs.LemonDrop: I was a Army wife for 6 years, my late husband spent 15 months on the front lines in Iraq so I’ve been there. (No, he didn’t die overseas so no worries there). It’s a difficult situation to be in, especially when you deal with limited communications. Not sure how much your DH will have communication but every little bit is nice. The best advice I can give is to stay busy!! Take up a hobby, volunteer, anything that keeps you busy so you aren’t just sitting around thinking about the “what-ifs”. Know that whatever is happening over there, worrying about it won’t change the outcome of the situation. It’s a mentality and sometimes easier sad than done. Don’t go looking for news out of there which will only fuel more worries. Keep positive, set little goals to count down the days or weeks and keep your head up!
Post # 5
In answering your question the “how od you do it?” question.. the answer is that you just do. You get through the days one at a time and over time it gets a bit easier. It’s scary as all hell, but there’s absolutely nothing you can do so you just sit tight, keep busy and focus on the little milestones. Let yourself wallow in the suck once in a while then force yourself to go out or do something like see friends, or sit in a coffee shop. Send lots of mail/packages if he will be there a while and take whatever opportunity you can to have a conversation.
Post # 6
Thanks. I’m not sure how they do it either!
Thank you. I’m sorry about your late husband. That must have been so insanely hard.
DH will have limited internet, but hopefully it will be there and i might get an email a day. It’s not enough to skype with one another. I can use skype to call his local cell, but it’s astronomically expensive to do that (like 79 cents/minute or something crazy) so it will probably be reserved to… like my birthday or something.
This is probably a stupid question, but how do you even sleep alone? I frankly really suck at this when DH is at conferences for a few days. Does it get easier? We’re the snuggle types so it’s really weird and is hard to fall asleep. We did 6 months separated a long time ago when we were still dating, but it wasn’t dangerous. I seem to remember having a lot of sleepless nights then too.
Post # 7
Thank you. A body pillow helps a little with the feeling of having something in the bed. I think it was almost harder reintergrating into sleeping with someone in the bed again after he got back! lol I became a bed hog after sleeping alone so long. It does get easier, each day is another day down and another closer to seeing each other again. I made little goals like getting to SUnday to watch my favorite show, making it another week down. Writing letters helps, getting it all out on paper. The thrill of getting actual letters in the mail is such a joy!
Post # 8
@Mrs.LemonDrop: you just do. it sucks. a lot. but it is manageable. surround yourself with a great support system and keep busy. try not to focus too much on the news as well. take it one day at a time….for every day that he is gone, it’s one day closer to when he will get home.
Post # 9
My fiance is in the military and he’s getting deployed about six months after we get married so I’ve been looking for some encouragment and advice. I found this awesome blog the other day. She’s a military wife whos husband has been deployed multiple times. I hope it helps you!
Post # 10
i’m the same as @luvbug080688:
you just do what you have to do to get by. my husband and i are both military and we’ve both gone through super rough spots being worried and scared and you just have to remember you’ll be like that the whole time. it’s exhausting, but you can’t do anything to change what it is. you should talk to him about long term planning though. will he eventually be “in the office” vs the field? when?
Post # 11
I am a military Fiance as well and my Fiance has had multiple tours Kuwait, Iraq, and now Afghanistan he has been there for 2years now. What helps is the fact that he doesnt tell me exactly what is going on because he doesnt want me to worry. I know where he is is dangerous but I think the less information I know about the details is better for me.
I dont have a lot of friends that can be supportive so I spend a lot of time by myself and I walking for exercise and I blog with WB. I also have a few chat buddy that I can share my feeling with.
Your Fiance will be home soon so you can go back to life as normal in whatever form that comes in.