a winter deployment

At the beginning of this deployment, I felt like time had frozen into a sludgy drip...like molasses on a cold winter morning. It felt like time had stopped, the deployment hadn't even begun, and that I'd sit perched on the edge of this separation forever. The first two months went just like that...dripping thickly and slowly. Then the next two months felt like I was stuck neither here nor there. It wasn't the beginning, but it certainly wasn't the end. Sort of like standing in a snowstorm....you can see a little behind you and a little in front, but neither the starting point nor the ending point is in site. It feels a little discombobulating. I wanted so bad to see the end, but I knew there was so much farther to go, so as a defensive mechanism, I just wouldn't look. I'd stay focused on the immediate time and space around me and pretend it was all I was ever going to know. Another month passed and I think I heard the icicles start to drip and trickle...getting my attention and making me wonder if this period in my life that was frozen was going to thaw and time would finally begin to move forward again. Would my husband come home on a blast of warm spring breezes? Was winter going to finally go away? And now, here I sit, in the last two months of the long, cold deployment. Autumn's leaves are still strewn around in patches in the corners of my yard. Once in a while, a tempermental breeze will blow a puff of warm spring air past my porch. And the squirrels are venturing sluggishly out of their hollowed logs. Is it really here? Is winter going to go away finally. Is my husband going to really come home? Can I really say, "I'll see you next month?" Like molasses that hasn't quite come to room temp, I am hesitant to say it...hesitant to get my hopes up that this deployment is going to end. I am aware, though, that as the end comes closer, time will get faster and faster, and ultimately I will be completely caught off guard when that ship pulls in on a warm spring day.- rashel fitchett

rashel fitchett was my neighbor, when we were stationed in whidbey island, WA. we still keep in touch through facebook, which is where i read her winter deployment writings.

rashel's words are so real and so beautifully written. it is exactly how i feel...

in the beginning of the deployment, it feels like you'll never get to the end. each day ever-so-slowly passing. the kids not yet realizing what really is happening. then the middle months...you're numb. doing what you have to do to get through each day...b/c there is no choice. the end still nowhere in site. and now, here i sit with two months to go. i can see the end now. i can almost touch it. i find myself often thinking...and dreaming of this end, when steve is here, by my side once again. lately, i've been teary. but these tears aren't tears of sadness; they are tears of happiness. and hope. tears b/c the end is closer now. and i can see it. i can say, with two months to go...finally, the end is near.


also, i'm so excited to share that steve is going to be interviewed this tuesday, on san diego's NBC news, at 8:15 AM. for their morning salute segment. about a month ago, i had submitted a photo and a little blurb for the segment and things snowballed from there. they will be interviewing steve, from iraq, while sharing some photos, from EODMU ONE's past five months in iraq. also, i just noticed that they have a photo of the kids and i posted here. i didn't realize this until just now. :-)