I am amazed some days that SpouseBuzz actually keeps churning, because as with all things military things are never set in stone, schedules change.
Perfect example, I really wanted to attend SpouseBuzz Live in San Antonio. I could not, because, of a basic scheduling issue. DH has been traveling a lot and happens to be in Wyoming as we speak, this was not supposed to be an issue. Some folks are in the middle of yet another PCS, it always seems as though there is "no 9-5" here at SpouseBuzz.
DH has just changed jobs, and we seriously thought this new position would give him the opportunity to be more 9-5. HA! I would laugh, if the opposite was not occurring.
In fact the other day when I picked up my son from first grade, we were on the way home when the following conversation ensued...
Son: "Mom, why is Dad homeless?"
AWTM: I continue to drive looking really confused
Son: "Where is his home?"
AWTM: thinking to self, "crap, crap, crap"
OK, here is where my Mom brain kicks into overdrive, wondering where I have went wrong explaining the frequent absences, why we have spent half of our time in the past 5 years driving across the United States to meet Daddy in a hotel because of military schools, meeting him after long deployments etc.
I have always explained where Daddy was and why, but frankly as National Guard children who seem to be in towns where everything is 9-5, they are starting to figure out our lifestyle is not normal. We try to be normal suburbanites, but we are not able to pass the normal test at this point.
I think some in the neighborhood, are assuming he is my boyfriend, and just shows up late at night, only to leave before the sun rises. Maybe some assume I am a kept woman, or the other woman. Because they see DH only when the lawn needs to be mowed, or lifting something heavy.
I seriously drove home trying to explain to my children, (who btw are bright, so I am having difficulty understanding why they do not get this...)that Dad lives with us.
AWTM: "Guys, Daddy is not homeless, our house is where he lives."
Son: "Well where is his other house?"
AWTM: "there is no other house, when he is gone for work he is either on a military base, or in a hotel."
Son: "He has got to have another house, he is gone a lot."
AWTM: "Do you remember when we visited Daddy at Fort Benning, and we stayed at the hotel?"
Son: "You mean, the time you hid our Easter eggs in the hotel room, so we would think the Easter Bunny was real and knew where we were."
AWTM: mind reeling now, because now the 4 year old, just realized the Easter Bunny is Mom, and I can see her poor little face in the rear view mirror and she is starting to cry.
AWTM: "I didn't hide the eggs, the Easter Bunny seriously knew where we were."
Son: "Well I found candy bags in the garbage."
AWTM: "The Easter Bunny hates litter."
AWTM: Now I am sitting in the car, on this SHORT drive home, and it feels like eternity.
Son: "So Dad is homeless."
AWTM: "No, we are married, your Dad lives with us."
AWTM: I am fried, seriously. Daddy has been home perhaps 2 days this month, my brain is cooked. I finally realize my children have no concept of "nuclear family", well the "nuclear family" as I saw it growing up. Their view is skewed and different, and they are beginning to notice. And as American, and Patriotic as it is. Daddy is serving his country, not only for us, and to protect the American ideals. They do not understand, because there are few people who have the same life style.
As we pulled into the garage, I realized I might need to explain our lives more than I had thought.
We enter the house, take off our shoes, and place them in the mud room on the rug, and we proceed with life like every other house on the block.
I find some celery, raisins and peanut butter, and make ants on a log. I pour some cold glasses of milk and finally give in to my children as they beg for cookies.
"Only 2, I do not want you to spoil your dinner"