Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Being Honest

Some of you may have been wondering where I went and some of you may not have noticed I was gone. Thank you to those of you who called or emailed me to make sure I was ok. I’ve been struggling a lot lately and have wondered how much of that I wanted to share (or remember later) and so I have put off updating my blog. I finally decided that I am not being honest with myself if I don’t allow myself to reflect on my challenges as well as my triumphs.

The short version is this… the last year has been very difficult. Actually, in some ways the last year has been nearly as difficult as the previous two years when Jason was gone. Readjusting to life with Jason home has not been a walk in the park. He has changed and while he was gone our family changed too. Now, a full year after his homecoming, it stills feels like we are trying to make everything work like it did before the deployment. Why doesn’t anyone tell you about this part? We hear lots of talk about the changes during deployment but I had no idea that the homecoming was not the end of it.

In the midst of our readjusting, we are coping with even more changes. We found out in July that the homeowners of the house we were renting would be raising the rent. This forced us to move unexpectedly. When faced with the prospect of moving our entire house of furniture ourselves on little notice, we opted to have the Army move us to Jason’s next duty station. It was all very sudden and we had planned to stay in that house for 2 more years. It was frustrating to have things change so quickly, just when I had started to feel at home here in Washington.

Two weeks ago we moved out of our huge 3600+ sq. ft. home and into our cozy, 26-ft. camper. (First-world problems, right?) Yes, it’s the RV life for us again. Ironically, we were forced out of our rented home because of an increase in the rent while our home in Georgia is rented to a tenant who pays several hundred dollars less than our mortgage payment. Ahh, the things that happen when the economy stinks! We’ve ended up like so many other families-unable to sell our home and unable to recover any of our savings that we put into it.

Despite my emotional plea for Jason to beg for permission to attend school in Georgia, we are still headed to Arizona. Our tenants in the house in Georgia are moving out next month (they’re in the Army too) and so our house will be vacant once again. In my mind, this was an open invitation to return. However, it wasn’t meant to be. Instead, we will drive from WA to AZ in December and leave the RV there. Then the kids and I will spend a few months in GA while I try to deal with the house there and take advantage of the chance to see old friends. Early in 2012, the kids and I will join Jason in AZ.

For the next six months, everything we own will sit in storage-except for what I was able to cram into the RV. The holidays will be different this year, with even more emphasis on family and even less on the material aspects. We won’t have our decorations or Christmas stockings and we certainly won’t be roasting a Thanksgiving turkey in the tiny camper oven. I think it’s going to be a mixed blessing though. It will be nice to shift some of the focus away from our family traditions and instead think more about the reason behind them (our family.)

So here I sit, in our little “home” in the pouring rain (going on two weeks of that rain now), with no internet access, no dishwasher… and I am going to try to make the best of it. I painted the walls in the RV and am going to sew some cute curtains to cheer the place up a bit. I’ll drive down the road to use the wi-fi and we’ll enjoy something yummy from the crockpot for dinner. Even though things seem overwhelming (I have a little one with a fever and upset tummy today and all 8 of us are sharing one VERY tiny bathroom) we’ll get through this together. Somehow…. we always do.

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