Having already established that my life is like "If You Give a Moose a Muffin," a new book has been added into the mix at our house.
Marvin K. Mooney, Will You Please Go Now!
Trust me, I'm not trying to get rid of my husband and I really would like to keep him home with us for a bit. But if the last two deployments he went on busted the schedule by having him leave earlier than anticipated (and quite suddenly in the case of the first deployment), this one has tried to make up for that by continually setting his date to leave back. This means several things...
1) It means that the gear buying has gotten more ridiculous. The man is already in Deployment Land in his head. The bad juxtaposition of being in Deployment Land but having access to all the gadgets and gizmos and shopping areas stateside while mentally being somewhere sandy, stinky, and with mass shower facilities causes all sorts of strange behavior headed up by things like, "Honey, I need to grab a Sham Wow to use as a towel over there." This unholy item would have never entered my house had Air Force Guy left on time.
2) It means that AFG looks like the Crocodile Hunter all the time. People in Deployment Land dress for deployment. Even if they're only in Deployment Land in their head. As a result, our house resembles the movie Jumanji, and AFG is the Lion Hunter.
3) It means my house is a terrifying mess. There is simply not enough room in a normal home for all this gear to be on ready stand-by to go. There isn't. I have multiple rucks in my entryway blocking access to the books. There are multiple pairs of socks and boots in my living room. You can't even walk in the bedroom because there is so much stuff in there. Even the bathroom is hogged up by toiletries for deployment. Tactical toiletries? Sheesh! I guess that one goes along with the 5.11 Tactical Barbecue Sauce. And there's nowhere I can put this stuff that would be out of the way. And AFG checks "the list" every day to make sure he has every single thing on it.
4) It means my friends have already commiserated with me and consoled me about my husband leaving. Twice. At this point, the actual day he leaves will be a bit of an anti-climax.
5) It means all AFG's friends that are not deploying have already held good-bye "Happy Hours" for him. Twice. And while they're always happy to get an excuse for a Happy Hour, it's getting kind of weird at this point. You know what I mean?
6) It means that the usual "Big Bang" I try to distract the kids with when Daddy leaves is a bit of a problem. Originally the "Big Bang" was going to be a trip to Busch Gardens with our friend wifeunit and her adorable son and step-daughter, but then AFG didn't leave.
Then our "Big Bang" was going to be a visit by my brother and his triplets and some local sightseeing. But AFG didn't leave.
I'm running out of things to plan for maximum "Bang" effect here! And if you're doing "Big Bang" activities every week, they kind of lose their ability to take the kids' minds off Daddy leaving. At this rate I'm going to have to come up with something absolutely spectacular if the man really ever does go. I've heard they have a pirate ship that sails around Baltimore Harbor - maybe that would work?
Don't get me wrong, I'm truly dreading the day AFG really does leave. I'm dreading the smaller shopping trips, the lower volume of laundry, the bare-ness of my house. I'm dreading nights most of all, when I'll be by myself in bed without my best friend and soul mate to discuss the day's events. I'm dreading it horribly.
But I also just want to get it all over with. The sooner he goes, the sooner the clock starts for him to come back. The sooner we can all be normal again, with non-Crocodile Hunter clothing and no falling for horrible marketing ploys like the Sham Wow. Right now I also can't be in "Deployment Mindset", because AFG is still here. I'm in limbo. I can't plan for things to do with him, because he'll be gone. But I also can't get together CARE packages or make my home routine because he's home. It's funny how so often we search for some sort of normality, even if it turns out that "normal" is the tougher road.
And most of all, even though my husband is here physically, he's not really here. He's already over there with the people he's supposed to be with right now. And he's supposed to be doing that job, which he is already doing in his head.
If he'd just GO already our timer would start and he would come back and be really home once again. I could get on my schedule. The kids could ease into the situation. And we could stop examining the Sham Wow boxes at the As Seen on TV store.
AFG has yet another date to leave, it's in the very immediate future. I'm happy for this, but much like the last few weeks of my pregnancies when I was SURE it would never, ever, ever end; I don't quite believe it. We'll see how that goes.
In the meantime, Marvin K. Mooney, will you please go now!