The Deployment Diary

Thursday, April 08, 2004

Day 212 Just Trying to Keep Sane...

I guess I should tell my husband when he calls not to say "next week I'm going to call twice. Talking once a week just isn't enough."

The last time he said this (two weeks ago), things happened and communication was cut. Sunday night, once again he said this and I've not heard from him again. Seems that it's just not in the cards for us to talk more than once a week. And, if the idea is muttered, we won't even share emails.

I hadn't expected to hear from him on Sunday. Communication had been cut so he hadn't emailed Saturday night. I woke up Sunday to no word and figured the phone wouldn't be ringing that night either. Early evening, I went out to water the grass seed I'd put down and the flower seeds I'd planted. I'd gotten to the door and that little voice said to grab the cell just in case. And I did.

I had finished watering the roses, the tulips and the greenery around the pond. I went to the area by our gate where I'd planted all the seeds and noticed a young couple walking down the street in the dim light that was left from the day. My heart kind of sank. It feels like it's been years since I've held the hand of the person I love so deeply. It feels like a lifetime ago that I was able to look into his eyes and feel what he was feeling without either of us having to utter a word. I went back to watering my seeds, wishing for the time to speed up so these feelings of loneliness and sadness would be a memory that would seem to have happened a lifetime ago.

At about that moment, the cell rang. I dropped the hose and ran to the back stoop where I'd left the cell phone. If it was my husband, it would say "unavailable." This time, it was a number. I answered with the intention of getting rid of the person on the other end. I just wasn't up for talking. I wanted to have a night to sit and feel sorry for myself. I'm entitled to that every once in a while.

When I answered, I heard the familiar sound of calling from the desert. It was him. My heart pounded and my eyes filled with tears. Since the prior Thursday, I've been up working until two and three in the morning. When I'm overly tired, I cry more easily than normal.

He said, "Hey Baby, it's so good to hear your voice."

And I proceeded to burst into tears. The call was so unexpected and we'd just lost soldiers a few days before. To be able to hear his voice was just such a light in the middle of the darkness. I couldn't help but to cry.

He asked why of course, and I told him about the job and working late - that I'm just exhausted and hearing his voice was such a comfort. We talked for a while and it helped me pick myself up, dust myself off and get back to living for tomorrow.

Unfortunately, it's the last time I've heard from him. I will usually get a few short emails during the week and it's been frighteningly silent. I tell myself that they have probably cut communication to help keep them safe and that comforts me. The truth is, I don't know anything. With all the news, I can't decide if not knowing anything or if having an idea would be better. All the news coming out of there - it's as if the occupation has ended and a new war has begun. And maybe it has...

The rumors are to hang up their return date this fall - not that we had one, so I guess I should rephrase and use return MONTH, and pray they'll not miss this Christmas too. I'm not buying that just yet. I refuse to add drama that is no more than speculation and rumor. I have enough real drama thank you very much. We're not even into summer yet. I don't see any major rotation plans that are six months away being changed over problems that our forces haven't even had a week to defeat.

I've read that Tim's wife will not be returning as planned. My heart just breaks for them and prayers are being said. I cannot imagine being that close and having it ripped from your grasp. I truly hope we defeat this growing cancer in Iraq so they are not delayed more than a few weeks. I've heard from several spouses I know online who are also being told not to expect their loved ones to return in the coming weeks as planned. If anything, this cancer hasn't a clue what kind of hornet's nest it's kicked. These soldiers see this enemy as standing between them and home. The quicker they kill it, the quicker they are in the arms of those they love. Picking this week to kick that nest probably isn't the smartest thing they've ever done, but these folks aren't known for their brilliance. In due time, they shall see the wraith of our hell. We're more than happy to help them achieve their eternal sand nap...

Please pray for those being delayed and their families. They could use them I imagine. And please keep all our soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines in your prayers. The victories they win in the coming weeks will hopefully put an end to all the hit and run tactics our troops have faced since the end of the war.

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