Friday, October 30, 2009

Because I am keeping up with the Joneses....

Today I decided to mix up my exercise routine (which usually consists of either walking on the treadmill in the garage or walking the track down the street) and walked to some of the other housing developments in our general vicinity. I'm highly nosy, and like to see how people decorate their yards.

I was amazed at the number of houses that seemed to just not give two shits what the outside of their home looked like. There were a lot that looked really nice, who had pretty palms and flowers, don't get me wrong. And I can only assume that the 20+ houses who leave their garage door open about a foot do it because they have a cat. If I was a burglar (and I'm not sure why my mind thinks like this), I could totally shimmy me and my ghetto booty under that door and be in their house, lickety split.

When I got home 2.5 miles later, I tried to look objectively at my own house, and see what others would see through their eyes. Ummm, yeah, I'm an ass...the grass needs to be cut, I need to de-leaf the landscaping, weed out the old dead shit, etc. It's not that bad, but bad enough to where Addison and I will be spending some time on it this weekend. I hate doing yard work. Adam and Addison do the yard work. The inside is my job.

It's about time I stop pretending like there is no outside of the house and take care of it. Adam's not here, and hasn't been for weeks and weeks and weeks. Thank God Addison asks if he can mow. Do it to it, Boy.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Because this is reality, dear...

I've heard a lot of complaining the last few months, I've read a lot of complaining, I've done my own complaining. Complaining amongst the wives about this and that (not getting a phone call every day, not getting every detail about every single thing going on with the guys, etc.)

Here's where I might sound unjustly cruel. Get over it. It's not all about you. Our men are at WAR, and if they call you once a week, be grateful. Be grateful your husband is alive and well. Others aren't that lucky, and will never talk to their husband on the phone again, crappy connection, dropped calls and all.

I'm sorry if your husband's job is an inconvenience to you. He volunteered to join the Army, he volunteered to be in this unit, he might have even signed the dotted line more than once. Not all of us knew exactly what we were getting into, dating or marrying this type of Soldier, but most of us did, or have chosen to keep living this life. It's not an easy life, but no one ever promised life would be easy. If they did, you should find them, and kick their ass for lying to you.

No doubt we also sacrifice for our husbands and their jobs. But to complain constantly is not going to change anything. That's not to say I don't complain, because sometimes it helps to vent. I'm not perfect...far from it. I don't particularly like reality. But I'm doing my best every day to deal with it, and realize the guys are busy. Let them do their jobs. God knows they'd much rather be home with us, going to our kids' sports events, carving pumpkins, watching football on Sunday, and so on. But they aren't. And no amount of complaining is going to change it.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Because it's just a box...

You'd think I'd be an expert by now. I'm not. I'm very care package-challenged when it comes to putting together a box to send to Adam.

I started sending him packages in 2001. At that time, though, the box could be no bigger than a shoebox, and we had to bring them to his unit, because they didn't have an address, and they got shipped right there from Fort Benning. You know what it's like to try to cram stuff into a shoebox? My feet are sized 6 1/2. Being the rebel I am, I would go to Wal-Mart and buy the cheapest boots I could find, throw them away and use the box, because really, shoes did come in them, right?

I've been averaging about three boxes a month right now. Of course, there's always at least 10 cans of his beloved Copenhagen. Then the dilemma hits me...what the hell else can I fill up this box with?

The second Adam gets on the plane to deploy, he starts a diet. (I'm not sure why, he knows I'm a chubby chaser.) This means I don't send him cookies, brownies, candy, etc., because it will just go into the community pile. He asks me to send "healthy" stuff. That's like asking Willy Wonka to shop for him.

One deployment, I sent him a few bags of dried fruit. That's healthy, right? Except I forgot his allergy to sulfa, and the fruit is dried in sulfa. He did let me know his medic really enjoyed it.

Another deployment, I went to the cheap toy aisle in Wal-Mart (you know, the one where everything is a dollar, and you know within 10 seconds of playing with it it's going to break?) and got a recorder (I call it a flute, that's what it basically is), silly putty, etc. He seemed to enjoy it, and it broke up the monotony of beef jerky and hunting magazines.

Now I've got a new angle, and unless you know us, you'll probably think we're crazy. (We are.) I had the usual array while packing up a box last night...Bass Masters magazine, hunting magazine, beef jerky, Copenhagen, etc. It was still looking pretty sparse, so I consulted Addison and said, "Go look in the pantry, and find something we'll never eat while Dad's gone." He picked out a can of kidney beans. Now that I think about it, they're my kidney beans, when I make my Paula Deen chili. Anyway, Addison got a Sharpie and wrote on the top, "We ain't never gonna eat these." (Yes, the improper grammar was my idea.)

The beans are now nestled among the other goodies, ready to be shipped out tomorrow. I wish I could be there when Adam opens the box, and pulls out a can of freakin' kidney beans. I have no doubt he'll first be like, "WTF?", and then he'll laugh his ass off.

I'm also willing to be no one else will be getting kidney beans in their care packages.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Because some people need to learn some manners...

Here's the deal - I am the leader of the Family Readiness Group for my husband's company. It's a military thing.

Anyway, there are about 40+ wives in said company. For the most part, they are independent and self-sufficient. Some do not contact me at all. Some contact me almost every day for things that I cannot possibly do for them unless I have a magic wand and fairy dust. That's all fine and good. I put myself out there to help everyone, regardless of it being something simple or something earth-shattering and life-changing. (Which has happened, and it's something I never want to experience again, God willing.)

Last night I got PISSED. I got a text at 11:22 p.m. (yes, P.M.) letting me know that this wife was back in town. (When they leave the area for more than 24 hours, they have to let me know, and I pass the information on, just in case something happens to their husband.)

I was asleep by 10, which is very rare for me. I'm a night owl, usually going to sleep after 11 or 12, so waking up at 11:22 annoyed the living fuck out of me. How inconsiderate. If she was afraid she'd forget to let me know (and it's not required to let me know, unless they had an open-ended trip) she could have written it down to let me know in the morning. She could have emailed me the information. But no, it had to be a text.

I know I put myself out there and offer to help anyone with most anything, but let's have some consideration for others - more pointedly, me. Not a day goes by that I don't do something FRG-related, some days spending hours doing it. I'm not complaining, but you will be on my shit list the next time you wake me up.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Because I do get scared...

Every morning at 9 I usually change the channel from the Today Show to the Golden Girls or the Game Show Network, depending on my mood (yes, I'm am ready to live in a retirement community).

This morning, though, I got in the shower first. When I got out, I saw breaking news that 14 Americans had died in helicopter crashes in two different parts of Afghanistan. Talk about my heart dropping to my feet...

Of course, the first thing I think is, please don't let it be Adam. Please don't let it be his company, his unit, his regiment. Then I feel guilty, and say a prayer for those who died.

Then I started to wonder "Would I have been notified already? Is the news ahead of notification? What unit was it?" I woke up ready to go shopping for Christmas decorations, and didn't know if I should leave the house.

I decided to stop be paranoid and just get out of the house, and I'm glad I did. It was a welcome diversion from the 24/7 reality of being a wife with a husband overseas. And I of course got some great stuff, because, I'm all about Christmas.

Tonight I will count my blessings.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Because I'm a crazy Christmas woman...

I love Christmas, plain and simple. There's something so magical about that time of the year. I love that families spend time together, and, if we're lucky enough to have Adam home that year, it's even more special. I love the fact that life slows down.

I've been a bit OCD this year. It's going to be the best Christmas ever, and I'm already so excited I began my shopping early. I have one more thing to buy for my mom, then I'm done with shopping, except, you know, that whole Santa thing. I really wish he was real, because it would save me an assload of money, especially on a child who already has everything (except an XBox, PS3, etc., but I don't find that they are necessities when you already have every other gaming system). This year the big present is a 10-year-old actually chats with girls on Facebook. I'm sort of leery about this, and tell him to not be a stalker and don't be mean, but OF COURSE he already knows this, because 10-year-old boys know everything. Or so he tells me.

It's such a relief to have the shopping out of the way, so I can focus on decorations. This is our first Christmas in our house, in a REAL house, not on-post housing...ahhhhh. It's still so strange to me to realize we own a house - I feel like an adult. I really appreciate it too. Thirteen years of living in military housing will do that to a girl.

I might be rushing the season, but I am so looking forward to it that it's not even funny. I won't be putting the tree up anytime soon (I need to buy a new fake one, we chucked our old one before moving last year, because the expensive pre-lit one had a whole section of bulbs burnt out.) I have no doubt I'll have it up before Thanksgiving, but not too soon, only because Thanksgiving is late again this year.

Tis the season yo.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Because it's time for another one ...

If I was a celebrity, I could write a book and make an assload of money. But I'm not, I'm just a regular person who has struggled with depression my whole life, so I'll talk about it here instead.

I've written about this before, but I think sometimes it deems repeating. I have depression. Dysthymia, to be exact. Dysthymia is an ongoing, low-grade depression. Stress can exacerbate major depression. I found this out when Adam did a paper on dysthymia for a class. (It was nice to see him try to learn more about what affected me, and how to deal with it.) I found it a tad bit hilarious that I married a man in the military without ever knowing I had dysthymia. Stress? Yeah, what military wife doesn't deal with stress?

I'm glad that depression is no longer a social stigma. It can really, really hinder me, and if people know this about me, and understand it, it's that much more helpful to me. I can't understand people who don't think medication is necessary. (I will point out that I am not on any sort of medication, but I feel strongly about this.) If your friend told you she had cancer, would you tell her not to treat it? Depression is an illness, and if it can be helped with medication, why not?

If you've never experienced depression, count your fucking blessings. If you know someone who does, try to understand. It's not something we can just "snap out of" or forget about. It affects us every minute of every day. I would love to be depression-free for the rest of my life. But that's not possible. Dysthymia will affect me for the rest of my life.

I've learned the warning signs of when I'm falling into a major depression. I've had two major depressive episodes in my life. I hit rock bottom, literally. I look back now and am glad I'm alive. I don't even remember much of those episodes, that's how unlike myself I was at that time. I thank God for those around me who helped and understood, and saved me before it was too late.

Depression is real. (Oh damn I sound like the Cymbalta commercials that actually make me more depressed.) Life is tough, no doubt, and depression can make it seem that much tougher. If you have a loved one with depression, reach out to them. Sometimes we need more help than we let on, or even know that we do.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Because I'm a tad bitter and shouldn't be...

I've been sick a whole week. Addison was sick all last week, with the flu, and missed every day of school. No biggie, it sucks being sick, especially when there's no hubby around to take care of us, or family whatsoever.

I got angry the other day. I'm not sure if I was justified in feeling the way I do, but sometimes I tend to fly off the handle. It happens.

With the advent of Facebook, e-mail, even texting, it was old news that Addison and I were sick. I got an e-mail from a wife, letting me know another wife was sick, and maybe I should check up on her. That's when I lost it. Who called me? Who asked, at any point, if we needed anything?

Yes, I'm stubborn and all, and don't ask for help. Maybe it's my own fault for projecting that I am Super Woman and can do it all. Well, I can't. Even if I refused help, a simple, "Hey, I know you're both sick, Adam's gone and you have no family in the area. Is there anything you need or want that I can help you with?" would have meant the world to me.

Maybe it's time for me to pull back some, to let people take care of themselves, since they don't seem to worry about anyone else besides themselves anyway. Maybe it's time for me to focus on myself and my son, instead of worrying about everyone else. Hell, maybe I need a whole attitude adjustment.

Whatever it may be, it needs to change.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Because it's my son ...

I know, I know, it's just my boy kicking for the two points after the touchdown, but I've seen grown adults who can't kick like this. So, being the incredibly proud mom I am, I'm subjecting you to it.

If you listen closely, you'll hear me saying, "Come on boy..." Then I giggle after he kicks it into the woodline, because I was so excited for him, and my nervousness vanished.


Thursday, October 1, 2009

Because I'm repeating my favorite post ...

I wrote this post a year and a half ago. For some reason I felt like sharing it again, if only to prove that I am still soft in the head:

Yes, it's official, I have lost my mind. The song, Too Much Time on My Hands by Styx (who doesn't love Come Sail Away, The Best of Times and Babe?) is running on a constant loop in my head.

To prove the point of mind-loss, here are my top 10 ideas on what my Silky Terrier, Baby, does when she squirrels up under our bed at various times during the day. (Sometimes if my big toe brushes up too close to the dust ruffle, she will emit a low growl, making me jump on the bed so I don't come to be known as "Nine-Toed Nash.")

1. I told Adam the other night while we were watching TV in bed and heard Baby rustling under the bed that she was running an underground meth lab. Hey, Baby, keep me out of it, but make sure you share the profits, bitch.

2. Has an internal debate with herself on whether she really is a dog or a cat. I can hear her now: "That short lady and the tall guy call me kitty all the time and laugh. Is it true? I smell like a dog and I eat dog food, yet when a cat food commercial comes on, they ask me, 'Baby, you want me to buy you that'"?

3. Is hiding out from that thing that is always following her around. (her tail)

4. Has an encyclopedia collection she is devouring voraciously in hopes of going on Jeopardy!.

5. Protecting her health since I haven't "gone green" with my household cleaners. I was a sucker and bought the Clorox "green" bathroom cleaner. Nope, doesn't work as well as regular Clorox Clean-Up. It'll burn the hairs out of your nostrils but you can bet your bottom there are no germs on my countertops.

6. She could possibly have a Playstation under there and is living a life of crime and destitution while playing Grand Theft Auto 4.

7. Wondering how she can get out of the fence and get knocked up so she too can be classy and go on Maury to find out who her baby daddy be, saying she is "2,000 percent sure he's the daddy because she's never been with anyone else".

8. Practicing her "looks" so Tyra doesn't tell her she looks "dead in the eyes" when trying out for America's Next Top Model.

9. Plotting my death, a la Stewie, so she can take my place as Adam's wife.

10. Budgeting so she can figure out if she has enough dough to run for president as the "crunk candidate."