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Two Weeks Before Deployment…

The last two weeks before a deployment can be stressful.  You constantly think about it and sometimes, you even wish that your spouse would go ahead and leave so that you can get it over with.

There is so much to do.
You think you have plenty of time to take care of things, but the truth is that you don’t.
Here are some things that I’ve learned about family interaction time before a deployment.
  • Quality time with your spouse is vital.  We were so blessed in that we had two of our friends volunteer to keep our son so that my husband and I could go out and have several nice, romantic dates.  It really helped us to connect before he left.  I believe it is vital to get your marriage on a good and stable foundation before a deployment.  Quality time and prayer can help fight against any issues that may occur during the involuntary separation.
  • Reduce your nonessential commitments.  About two months out, I started taking a break from extracurricular activities.  My husband also stepped down from some commitments at church that took a lot of time.  We needed that time to focus on each other and what was coming in the days ahead.
  • Pack in advance.  We spent the last two days sorting and packing, which took away a lot of time that we could have used for each other.  We were up until almost 3:00AM and had to leave at 6:00AM to drop my husband off.  Needless to say, we were exhausted.
  • Find a way to process your emotions.  I was in denial for a while, but I still did what I needed to do to get my husband ready. I just didn’t want to think about the part concerning him being gone.  Eventually, I had to face the reality that he was leaving.  Now, I just take one day at a time.  That’s all I can do.  Anything over a day is too overwhelming.
  • If you have children, do plenty of home videos of your spouse.  I videotaped my husband reading to our son before bedtime.  I also did a video of him “giving words of wisdom” to our son.  Now if I can only find the time to put these on a DVD…
Have a wonderful day!
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{ 5 comments… add one }
  • Christian Mommy Writer September 24, 2009, 2:28 PM

    @Momsweb – thanks!

    @Jolyn – I'm actually going to do a post on that next week. Great minds think alike! 🙂 Thanks for your encouragement as well.

  • Jolyn September 24, 2009, 7:55 AM

    You are SO organized, that's all I'm saying. I wish I were that with it when I was your age/stage in marriage. Or now, for that matter! Way to go.

    And many blessed thoughts for you two and this upcoming challenge. I always try to console myself with the "positives" of hubby's absence: less laundry; less cooking; financial separation benefits…

    Until that gets old and I just want him back.

    Just keep on blogging!

  • MOMSWEB September 24, 2009, 7:01 AM

    These are excellent tips and words of encouragement.

  • Christian Mommy Writer September 23, 2009, 6:34 PM

    @Becky – I'll stop by your blog and check you out! Thanks for your comments. Deployment preparation is so overwhelming. And you are right, there are always seems to be some kind of training or TDY for them to go on right before they leave!

  • Becky September 23, 2009, 11:01 AM

    I loved reading this because in some ways it was so opposite of what we did when Jer was getting ready to leave. For the record? You have the better suggestions. We knew a year in advance about this deployment – yes, shocking to have so much time to prepare. It went by FAST. The last 6 months Jer was here? He was gone for almost 3 of them training. So, when he got home in mid June it was nonstop until he left at the beginning of August. We did do some really awesome things together and I'm so grateful, but I remember sitting there at the final briefings in July (a couple weeks before they would mobilize), and the chaplain was talking about how the last 2 weeks are the WORST and how you can expect to be at each other's throats. I remember scoffing at the notion, thinking to myself, no way, he's been gone before, we'll be fine. WELL – about 2 weeks before mob day – yep, we were definitely on each other's last nerves. I was anxious about him leaving, and him? Well, he was spending nearly all day getting ready to go and working for one of his LT's, so by the time he got home he was bombarded with finishing packing, seeing family, friends and trying to get it all together before he left, and really? He just wanted to get it started (the deployment). So, the best advice I can offer anybody going through this? Take a deep breath, work through it, and the stress you're going through now is completely normal. The chaplain WAS right, and it does blow over and you're better for it. 🙂

    Oh, and I started a new blog and could definitely use everybody's encouragement! I think I might be in over my head! Haha! http://pullinguptheweeds.blogspot.com/

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