Monday, March 15, 2010

Basic Training From the Wife's POV

*Advance warning. This blog is long. It will probably bore you, but I never wrote down anything about when Kyler was at basic, and I really, really felt like doing that tonight. If you trudge through, there are pictures at the end, and 3 are of attractive or muscly men in uniforms.*

When Kyler left for basic training, I had an extremely hard time. I'm sure the people who knew that thought I was being silly. He's not deployed, he's just gone for 2 months, he's in America and you know he's safe. But it was tough.

Ever since Kyler and I got together, we spent literally every day together. The only times we were apart were when he was flooded in at his house in Galena for 1 day. We lived 3 hours away from home together, in a huge town where it was really hard to meet people. We spent more time together than is probably humanly healthy, and lesser couples would have split as a result of being sick to death of each other. Not us...we loved that. He's my best friend. If he was gone for just 1 night at work, I missed him. We literally did everything together.

So, when I said goodbye to him and had to go back home knowing I wouldn't see him and would barely speak to him for 2 months, I didn't know what to do with myself. I lost 9 pounds in 1 week. I know that's extremely unhealthy, but I was very sad. When I am sad, I have no appetite. I didn't eat. I would have slim fasts every now and then to get some nutrients, and a few bites of whatever my grandma cooked for dinner to appease her. I just wasn't hungry. I layed around on my bed and watched TV. I hate crying in front of people and will honestly do whatever I can in order to not do that. I cried in front of more people than I'd like to mention. I knew 2 months was a short time, but I was thinking of how lonely and sad I was then, and that this was just the beginning. I didn't know when the next time I would talk to him would be. When it did happen, once a week if you were lucky, I could only hope for 5 minutes. Five minutes a week to talk to your husband. We had just got married and I was more alone then than I had ever been in my whole life. I talked to a woman on facebook who had just gone through it not too long before, and she told me she felt the same way but that it would get better in time. I didn't believe her. I felt like nothing could change the way I felt until I saw him again.

Another thing that made it so much harder was hearing from everyone I talked to, strangers even, that Kyler would not be the same man. This terrified me. I didn't want some stranger, I wanted the Kyler I love. I can't explain how many times people told me he would not be the same, and my heart sank every time.

After about 2 weeks, I realized the way I was handling things was not working out for me. Laying on the bed and moping and crying was making it seem like forever. Eventually, I got hungry again. I stopped crying. I was able to laugh and make jokes and be myself again. I had to learn how to be myself without Kyler around, and that was difficult after having him for 4 years. I realized that this had happened for a reason. I didn't and still don't understand why God chose this path for Kyler, or for me, but I realized He will not put you through anything you can't handle. I got off my bed and started looking on the bright side.

I learned to be independent. I learned to make happiness for myself and how to entertain myself without Kyler around. I read, I did craftsy things, I did things with my siblings, I baked, and I hung out with friends. I would have loved to hang out with them a lot more than I did, but they had lives of their own that they couldn't put on hold just because I was back around for a couple months. Getting out of my slump helped.

I focused on writing. I wrote Kyler letters literally every single day, at the end of the night. Usually about 5 pages, front and back. I have no idea where I found so much stuff to write about, but I wrote about everything and anything I could think of. For the first couple of weeks, I definitely edited and made myself be much more cheery than I felt. I wanted to support him, and not make an already tough time, tougher. I was lucky. He wrote me back, more than any other guy. He kept a notepad with him and whenever he had down time, he wrote me. I can't explain how excited I was to go to the mailbox and see envelopes with his writing on it.

As I counted down the weeks, I was happy to find that everyone who had scared me was absolutely wrong. I could tell in the letters that Kyler was exactly the same as before, if not even better. He appreciated me and we both realized how much we had taken each other for granted. As lonely as this life can be sometimes, I feel so much more loved now than I ever did before. I think if you have a good relationship, the military can make it amazing. Absence does make the heart grow fonder. Although, one thing did change a bit about Kyler. His vocabulary expanded to include some dirty words that he didn't used to say quite so frequently. ;)

I let myself have fun as time went on. I got some blonde highlights and took a sassy picture.

I went out with friends and did have fun, and those nights went by so much faster than when I sat inside and did nothing. I miss you guys a lot and I know that I at least have something to look forward to when Kyler eventually gets deployed, and that's seeing all of you guys again.

My BF Holly was a cat for Halloween and her tail got stuck in the car...completely not on purpose. I laughed till I cried. Thanks for your silliness :P

I went on a lot of walks with Shelby aka Shleby, who makes me laugh a lot by not even trying.

This was the last time I saw you girls for a while, and I miss you!!!

This novel coming to a close, if anyone reads this who is faced with a similar situation and similar feelings, know that it does get better-if you let it. If you lay on a bed and cry and don't get out and do anything, it will drag by like you can't believe. You'll be sad, you'll be lonely. There's good days and bad days, you just have to try to stay as positive as possible. You will learn to love your husband more than you ever though imaginable, and he will learn to appreciate all that you're going through to support him. You'll learn to be independent and stronger than you ever thought you could be. You will definitely want to slap someone in the face if their husband is gone for a week on business or for a trip and they act like they know how you feel, when it is just 1 week and he is comfortably sleeping in a hotel room, able to call or text whenever he pleases. People will say and ask ignorant things, such as do you miss him (obviously), or make a crass joke about him dying (regardless of his job, that is never, ever funny), or cheating. You will learn to not take their ignorance to heart. When you see people for the first time after hearing about your husband joining the military, you will be looked at as if you are already a widow. You will have to learn to not get angry about all of those things. You will learn to be lonely and you will learn to find ways to be okay with that. You will learn to sleep alone, eat alone, and never, ever, ever, forget to have your cell phone on you at all times.

You'll learn that there are positives!
1, you get free health care and cheap dental-hooray!

2, while the pay definitely isn't as much as they deserve, it is pay, and it is guaranteed. That's more than a lot of people can say right now.

3, your husband is forced to exercise every day. Enough said, no?

4, when your husband's away, you will lose weight. I'm pretty sure this is like 95% guaranteed.

5, you will cherish every minute together and never again sweat the small stuff.

6, he wears a uniform. Two uniforms actually, and they are both dead sexy.

7, the lingo is a lot to get used to, but once you learn it, you feel really cool saying things like "My hubby, the PFC, is going to get in his ACU's and go on Post to the PX, then go to Finance and make sure his BAH and BAS are right, hooah?" Okay...I lie. You will never say that. But if you can understand all of those, you know what I mean!

8, you get to watch Army Wives and know that it is completely not at all what your life will be like, except the times when they miss him. Also, please don't think any of the soldiers will look like Trevor. They don't. Except you Kyler!

9, you will have a great relationship because you will love your husband so much. You will be so proud of him and so happy with the time you do get to be near him, you will be amazed at how much love you possess.

10, and finally, you will get a picture like this in the mail after not seeing your husband for 2 months. You will have previously thought that time could not go by any slower than it already does, and then, after seeing this picture, it will. Your jaw will drop, your eyes will likely fill with tears, and then you may say "yowza".

1 comment:

  1. This is amazing....I just watched my husband get on a plane yesterday to head out to Fort Jackson. I felt(key word,especially after reading this) that I was a "widow".