Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A time to adjust

Almost two full weeks since our family has become one again. In some ways it feels like no beats were ever skipped. In some ways it feels like our whole world is out of whack and out of sync. With my military wife mentality still in high gear I just keep going on autopilot, easy him back into the routine, don't put too much pressure on him, keep the routine flowing and keep your patience calm and steady. However this is not a homecoming from a deployment or a year long tour in Korea. This was 140 days of mental help to teach and help not only Chris but our family learn to function on a new standard.
Like most spouses who gain their loved one back we paint a picture in our mind of what our homecoming will be like and what our life will be like again now that we are whole. We remind ourselves also that this is just a thought and not the actual what will happen once they are home. We however keep building up this dream in our head knowing we are just going to let ourselves down because it won't be the way we envision it. It is however what keeps us moving, it keeps us sane and focused on the end that is insight. It is the dream that saddens us and makes us feel like a failure when it doesn't go exactly as planned or doesn't even happen at all. Tv shows and commercials, movies they glorify it to us and we become jaded by it and it makes us feel so crappy in the end when its not that way.
Of course there is that happy reunion, sometimes a bit awkward at first but then the rush of emotions that take over and the relief that its all over and life can go back to normal. What is normal now? For those months of separation you each established a new normal because your counterpart was far away and unable to aide in the daily tasks that you once shared in. Now we must intertwined these two normals and make one. Sounds easy, right? Not so much. For four months I have paid all the bills, done all the housework, done all the errands, therapy sessions, birthday parties, sick kid duty, handy man, I kept it all going and only managed to drop the ball or lose momentum a few times. However with all that responsibility I felt empowered, I felt the strongest I had ever felt in a long time. After a while it was like second nature and the rhythm and routine was so clockwork it make me feel amazing.  Everything was now based on my time. I set the standard of when we left the house or did things so I knew at that very moment if we were late I had no one to blame but me, if we missed out I didn't plan right, if things moved smoothly I really did have it all together.
Now I incorporate my spouse back into this picture. I admit it was hard. I loved the empowerment and feeling I had from being the head honcho, the master, the one in charge. I loved stating to my oldest that these were the plans for the week and this is how it would be done and he rolled right along with it. Of course he is a teenager its not like he could do much to alter those plans unless some school function that pops up at the last minute would change them. My oldest complied, not always willingly but knew that I was the man, woman with a plan, and this is what was going to happen. It worked and things ran smoothly.
Now I share our vehicle again, I share a bed, a schedule and routine again. I am a creature of habit and often become a bit unnerved and unpleasant when things get messed with. I feel like my 3 year old actually. I get grumpy and bent out of shape. It's not my fault I prefer things a certain way. Don't believe me ask my spouse and my two co teachers. I am almost neurotic ha ha! I admit I haven't been too easy to mesh with. I was wanting him to bend with my schedule and not the other way around or even to compromise. I wanted him to fall into my terms and my rules. A bit unrealistic I know. I like simple and this to me was simple.
Don't get me wrong I am glad to have my other half home with me. It's nice to tag team with our kiddo and have someone else to help out around the house. It's been nice to have someone to share a lunch date with and run the errands for me I couldn't get to during the day. It gave me a new perspective on just how much I counted on my community and friends while he was gone.
These last two weeks I have not been me. I know I am getting used to it all but for some reason the questions of " are you glad he is home?", " Isn't it nice to have help again?", " Is he doing better?" make me squeamish in a way. Actually to the point I feel uncomfortable. Why? Because I am not sure how I feel right now, I am not sure if he is all better or at least better to a point that is helpful to him and us. I still need time to get a grasp on that answer. Of course I always gush and tell folks how wonderful it is and how nice its been and he worked so hard. Who the heck wants to hear my real answer? I am not negative Nancy I am a realist and just need time to process all that is going on.
I feel horrible to all those who stepped up to help because I have been so vague and distant. I know and feel I owe each and every one of them and I have no idea how to. I feel so much strain growing with those who stepped up for me because suddenly I don't know how to step up to them and show them how much it meant. I actually already feel the strain in some friendships because of it. Its not purposeful but my mental state has left me feeling so out of sorts I am still trying to process myself what all is happening. This is not as easy as I had made it out to feel when I become excited at the end of this journey. I feel I owe all those folks some sort of apology even my own husband because I myself am still trying to figure out what is going on, and where we go from here.
I know it is still so very early in this game to say exactly what will happen. I know there are plenty of kinks that need to be worked out and lines of communication that need to be either reopened or opened up. I know that bending more will help me help everyone. I know that time will help fix all of this I just don't know how much time its supposed to or going to in fact take. It puts a strain on ones own personal self and the marriage. I know its hard to accept and move on when things were told and promised to you that were going to happen never did and it could have helped improved the quality of the situation.
Throwing in the towel is not an option for me on any level. I don't quit, I hate quitting it makes me feel like a failure and that I am weak. I am strong, strong willed and tough. I see things through and makes sure that I push and encourage those around me to do the same. It still an adjustment period. It is still a time for learning and getting reacclimated to each other and our lives. I just need to keep reminding myself Rome was not built in a day and that in time, soon enough, things will be flowing as smooth as ever and I can look back on this and take from it things that will make a better, spouse, mother, friend and over all a better person.