10 June 2011


Its my last night home alone (allegedly!) tonight - the penultimate evening before his lord and master comes home and disrupts my routine, leaves kit everywhere and moves everything.  Sounds negative doesn't it, sounds as though l wish he wasn't due home - that's not the case, far from it.

When you living alone for whatever lenght of time you get into a routine, you only have to think about yourself and take no one else into consideration.  Once your routine gets disrupted you have to form a new one.  He's only been gone a month this time - but we moved house literally days before he went and l was here home alone unpacking boxes and finding new homes for our bits and pieces so l formed that new routine pretty quickly.

There are other stressful things going on right now legal battles and for the last month they have been on hold and emotionally for me its been great not having to deal with the harsh realities of being a grown up for the last month. Now it will be back in my face with like a train on a crash course collision. 

Yet lm nervous - going on a first date type nervous.  Ive got a full day and evening to get through until gets back - trying to fill my day.  What should l wear?  Will he even notice?  Primping and preening myself - when most likely he will get home exhausted just wanting a shower and to fall into bed - a real proper bed with a duvet and mattress - not even noticing what l look like or have on!  I will want to have a glass of wine, talk and re-connect, but in reality unlikely to sentence which makes sense.  Ive been here before, l know what to expect - doesnt mean l wont be disappointed.

What his return also means that we are moving closer to deployment - 12 weeks to be precise.  Creeping slowly forward, sneaking closer day by day, taking me unawares.

8 June 2011

Goal Posts Moving and Ray's of Sunshine

I'm not surprised or shocked - l should be so used to the goal posts being moved, the RAF being criticized and blamed and me having to shuffle and juggle my plans with 5 minute warnings - par for the course.

Firstly it was going out and the dates moved back later into May, then they bounced forward, then they pushed back and eventually 17th May was the day.  I was well aware that l would be "abandoned" over my birthday - it wasn't a significant one just another year older! 

The home coming was supposed to be 10th June but then the first flight out was not until 24 hours later - 11th June  morning, now its Saturday tea time (mid afternoon GMT) flying into Oxfordshire and then an hours travel time home - l get the pleasure of driving to camp to collect him by the side of the road - dignified!  Of course there is the given caveat - you know the RAF could bugger things up yet - it might even be Sunday.

Of course there is no question of me not pacing the floor waiting for the phone call to say be there  in 30 mins - but that's my Saturday evening.  And why do l feel guilty about the fact that l cannot take Monday off work - its not that l cant get the time its just lm actually extremely busy with meetings and paper deadlines to achieve - but still the guilt and the want to grab every available moment in time together because there are so many days, weeks and months spent apart.

I just fall into line - taking a secondary position, unable to make any demands, having to accept that my career has to take second place to his.  This makes my blood boil YET l still assimilate and do as l asked - why - cos lm head over heels in love with a member of Her Majesty's Forces.

On an aside - today has been a momentous day one of my oldest friends has had twins - little boy and a little girl - after 10 years of trying. failed IVF treatment after failed treatment, savings being used until they are non existent and finally some one up there smiled upon them.  So, a ray of sunshine in a gloomy dark day.

6 June 2011

Three Month Count Down

Perhaps l should give some background - some context.

Life with a solider isn't easy - lm not naive l knew this and lve always considered myself a strong enough character to just get on with things.  I was aware of separation, the deployment, the constant postings - and generally l like change, l get bored easily and start to look for pastures new.  I thought l could take it all in my stride.

And l can - 9 days out of 10 that is.  I moved countries to be with him - well from NI to South East England - not a million miles, l left my friends and family and everything ld ever known for 36 years of my life.  Id been a career girl thinking nothing of putting in a 15 hour day when required 5 days a week - l had it all -  fancy car, own home, clothes, holidays etc but sometimes material goods aren't always enough.  Redundancy hit around the same time posting was due so we decided we would progress our relationship and l moved, rented out my house and started the job search in England. 

We moved and 1 week after we moved - he was off - 3 weeks on a recce and lm left home alone minding the dog.  Well that is until his parents arrive - and almost drive me insane with their fussing.  In the midst of all this my best friend dies suddenly - again something l had to deal with alone.

When he's home its great we assume our roles - he is hunter gatherer and lm the home-maker.  I actually love the tradition and the stereotype - l love looking after him.  Don't get me wrong l work lve got a job that l actually really love and enjoy but lm not pulling the 15 hour days l once was - l want to come home to my man, my family - l still find it weird to say we are a family.  I have step sons (don't know what other way to label it!) who are gorgeous lovely boys.  However him being home is not the norm - since we moved 12 months ago he has spent 21 weeks away from home - so out of 52 weeks that's just under half.  And its bloody hard.

Hence the title - he spends so much time away that l have to be independent and get on with life as best l can, yet lm so very much dependent on him - pining for him when he is away, raging at him that he is away and spending evenings and weekends with only myself for company.

We are not married, l don't have children,  we do not live on the patch, army welfare is a joke - lm practically a non entity in their view as no wedding ring means no rights.  He isn't part of a regiment, he is specialist and therefore not does not have maybe the same camaraderie that other units and their spouses/partners enjoy.  Ive never been to a coffee morning/evening, been to one "WAGS" night out and that was in his last unit, and his CO invites him around but not me usually.  Mostly, lm glad - l don't do politics and the hierarchical caste system that is in place makes my blood boil - l don't call people sir, however once in a while a phone call would be nice to say - "are you ok, is there anything we can help with?"

I like to write, l like to talk and having read blogs of others in similar situations who have taken to articulating their thoughts and feelings l thought this might be an outlet.   I hoping this will be cathartic in a way and when l want to rant and scream or weep and wail but mostly feel his arms around me in a great big secure bear hug which  he is so good at it will help.

You see in Sept 2011 l have another 6 month deployment to live through.  This is my second and lm quietly counting the seconds until it arrives - and dreading - its like a huge black rain cloud over my head - that ominous feeling of dread that wont lift.  I wasn't like this 2 years ago - then we lived apart, we were in the honey moon phase l suppose, l had friends and family around and l was ignorant to what it would be like.  Sometimes ignorance really is bliss!

Tomorrow is my birthday - he's not here - has been gone for last month not due back until Saturday - as long as the RAF play ball.  We've been together 3 years - this is the 2nd birthday missed and the chances are Christmas will be apart too.  That's how it is - so many missed events and anniversaries - any Army partner will have experienced the same lve no doubt.  Yet l feel so lonely - l wont be alone -  lve a friend coming to stay and l had a friend staying over the weekend also, yet with out him here its hardly worth celebrating.

There's so much more - other stresses and strains that lm coping with for both of us but l don't think tonight lm strong enough to open that can of worms.