06 February, 2012

Army Wins Again

In the "struggle" for power between the Army family and {so-called} needs of the Army, what do you think usually wins? Despite all the crap they spout about family being so important and always caring and being there for the family, it's the Army that wins our Soldiers' time most often. Between deployments, training, and day-to-day busyness, they get my husband far more than I do.

I guess I've sort of been in a honeymoon-type phase for the last 8 months. I forgot that the Army takes precedence over me and what I want. I forgot that they have a say in when my husband will be home and how often we talk to/see each other. I forgot. Silly me, living in a dream land where my husband comes home for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Starting this week, Joe will be working 6 days a week, 12 hours a day, from now until sometime around August. So basically, he's working a deployment schedule without actually being deployed. I remember what it was like talking to him while he was deployed. We'd talk for 30 minutes {sometimes an hour} and then he would go to bed. So for the next 6 months, that's what I'm going to get of my husband. He'll get up early for PT every day, possibly come home for breakfast afterward and then be gone for the next 12 hours. He'll come home tired and I'll get a good hour out of him, if I'm lucky.

It's highly unlikely he'll be going to any more of my OB appointments. He probably won't be able to go to child birthing classes {which is partially my fault for not scheduling them yet}. I'll get him for one whole day a week, which will probably be Sunday...when we're at church all day. No more date night. No more lazy Saturdays.

For fun, they're adding in a free trip for him to WLC {Warrior Leadership Course} in just a few weeks. 3 weeks of being in the field... But he does get weekends off and he stays on the island. So there's that, I guess.

But the BIG kicker for me is... What about when our baby girl gets here? Sure, he'll get 10 days of leave when she's born, but what about after that? He'll rarely get to see her awake, hold her, play with her... And then that leaves me home all day with a newborn, doing all the housework because - let's face it - I'm not going to have any help. I was already concerned about us after she gets here and I can only imagine the stress these 12 hour workdays are going to add to having a baby.

I was already starting to stress out about being prepared for her arrival and now I have all of this to deal with. Part of me almost wishes they were taking this whole FTX thing somewhere else instead of staying here on island. That would mean he wouldn't be here at all, but at least I'd know what to expect... With this, I have no clue. I mean, really. He may get to go to child birthing classes with me...and he may not. He may get to go to an OB appointment or two...or he may not. He could be on day shift or night shift. At least I'd know what to expect if he were going to be gone for a month. But 6 months of 12 hr days and 6 day weeks? I have no clue what to anticipate except to prepare for the worst.

Maybe that's not the best way to respond to this, but it's all I've got for now. I know I should probably be thankful that it's not a deployment. And I am thankful that he'll at least sort of be around....but I know that even sort of being around will be hard. Maybe even harder than an actual deployment.

I know we'll get through it. We got through a really rough year of deployment and came out better for it. But really, it just sucks that the Army wins again.

19 comments:

hmb said...

Army = Honey Badger. :)
It'll all work out!

Chantal said...

Ugh this makes me angry for you!! Just don't try to stress too much about it. Once the baby gets here, you figure things out, trust me.

Kayla Sue said...

Ugh, I HATE that the army always wins. My hubby was deployed while I was pregnant and for the first six months of my son's life. He made it home for the birth on his r&r but just one week later he was gone again. I had to do it all by myself, the housework, the crying newborn, deployment blues... and yeah, it was hard. It sucked. But it went SO FAST. Pretty soon you'll be the one with a two year old and you bring comfort to a milspouse facing those same struggles that she'll be ok. That we see in part, but God sees in whole, and His plan is good.

Jes said...

I don't mean to stir the pot but I know many many women who would KILL to be in your shoes. To get to see their husband every day. To get to share a bed with him every night. My husband has been working 12-16 hour days for months {and will continue to for many more} and often goes into the office on weekends and works on training holidays and even some federal holidays and EVERY SINGLE NIGHT I thank GOD that he is home safe {although tired} with me!

I totally get that it sucks {and I don't claim to know anything about being prego} but try to think about the positive, it's not a deployment, and for that, praise the Lord!

Skinnie Piggie said...

It's not *completely* terrible... the entire time we've been married my husband has worked 12-16hr days. 4:30am-6:30pm are his "normal hours." The 6 days a week thing sucks though... that's seriously no fun! I'm not pregnant so I can't comprehend the feelings you're having, but I know you're going to conquer this, you're going to be a great mom, and your husband will value the time he has with you (and baby) even more, esp. when he has to work so much! If you ever need someone to hang out with, let me know =)

Nicole said...

I thought 12 hour days were normal?! I don't know anyone who works less than that around here! You'll get used to it.

heather said...

I know your disappointed but he will prob see her more then you think. the baby will be up a lot throughout the night for a few months. with my son my husband worked out of town 5 days a week so he never saw him, then he left for months with the army and then when he returned his job took him out of town again 5 days a week and then drill on weekends and that would be away. so we never saw him but in passing. now i'm pregnant with our 2nd and he is deploying in 4 months and he will miss this birth and then the first 6 months of the baby's life, not to mention our sons 4th b'day, halloween, thanksgiving, christmas and valentines day. all big firsts for the new baby. believe me i know what your going through and how your feeling. but the good thing about this is 1. you will get used to it and you'll find what time of day works for yall for him to spend time with her once she is here and you know how his schedule will be. and 2. she is be little and wont remember any of it.

if you want to talk to someone who understands im here to listen. it will be hard but time will pass quickly since you will be so busy. don't worry, things will work out ok.

Anna said...

Wow, I'm so sorry to hear this! I know it seems that this is horrible, but God has a way of making things better than we ever thought they could be. Just keep thinking positive and be thankful - God is ALWAYS in control. Wish I could just come stay with you for a while and help. :( Love you bunches and I will be praying!

Jenn said...

The Army has a way of scheduling lots of things inconveniently, hm? Always always always.

My husband was around but not around (if that makes sense) when my son was little. Lots of work, long hours, training, etc. But now that my son is over a year old, his lack of time spent at home has me much more riled up. Newborns basically just require their physical needs be met (although, obviously, they love being cuddled and they have personalities already and blah blah), but that baby will not know or remember if Daddy was around or not. Hopefully his schedule will settle by the time the baby is awake during the daylight hours and becoming aware of who is around her. And yes, thank goodness it's not a deployment! :)

Brianna Renee said...

I know that you're hormonal and disappointed and I'm not going to get into the who has it more difficult debate because that's childish but I am going to say that I was disappointed reading this post. You must know that there are military wives reading this and many of us would give just about anything to be in your shoes to have even just 10 days of paternity leave much less a husband in our bed at night, every night. Try and consider your audience.

JG said...

I think we can all agree the army sucks.

Optimistic Liz said...

my husband always works 12 hours, but the 6 days a week thing does really suck! But be glad he'll still get those 10 days with you! my husband was home on R&R and had to go back to Iraq right after I had our daughter. It may seem scary but believe any of us Moms, you'll fall right into a routine as soon as he goes back to work. But I've been through 2 deployments in 3 years so I would rather have that then go through another deployment.
As far as him getting to see you both, I am sure he will put plenty of effort into being with both of you on his one day off. Even if it is at church.
August will come fast and then you'll be adjusting back to a new routine.
You have it better then so many people who are going through deployments or even deployments that last over 12 months to people who's husbands didnt come home.

ROXY said...

The life of the Army! My husband leaves the house around 5 in the morning and come home around 5-6 in the evening. I am usually surprised if he comes home early than that.

Amanda said...

You'll adjust and adapt just like all of us wives have to at one point or another during our husband's stint in the military. It probably won't be easy but you are one strong momma and you've got this!

I can also vouch for the part that 12 hour days are not near as bad as they sound. Yes they make for a tired husband, BUT you'll have more time than you think so try not to over think or over stress about it.

And remember, God will never bring you to something he can't get you through.

Southern Roots and Combat Boots said...

I know EXACTLY ((((EXACTLY))) what you'll be going through...And, not gonna lie, if you like being around your hubby which I know you do as do I....It sucks...

My husband came down on orders to be a drill Sgt 1.5 months after we married...How lovely it was to be told that 75% of marriages fail while (on the trail) due to the your soldiers lack of time at home...

R went to work at 3:45 each morning and didn't return until, between the hours of 7-9 pm...He did this 6 days a week for 2 years and that's not including the 3 months of drill school he attended 400 miles away...I NEVER SAW THE MAN! Especially because I was working as well...His only day off was a Sunday and I worked most Sunday's...I also worked most evenings---I kid you not, we communicaited through a notepad left on the kitchen table...By the time I got home from work, he was in bed already, and when his alarm went of at 3:00 am, I was SOUND a sleep...

It was rough and there were days I wanted to and DID bawl over the situation but I just kept telling myself, it would end...Which it did:) He has been off the trail for 6 months now and I couldn't be happier---

Hang in there momma!!! Having a baby through this will be tough but just keep telling youself, that it will end...August isn't too far a way!!!

New Girl on Post said...

You know what? This is your blog and you can say whatever you want to. I know others might be aggravated that you are complaining about the situation, but again, IT's YOUR BLOG. Also it's your feelings and you can be disappointed if you want to. To be told that you should be grateful is hurtful not helpful. I would think that as fellow military wives if we don't agree with something and feel the need to be judgemental, then we should just keep our mouths shut.

Whitney @ Everything Happens For a Reason said...

This is YOUR blog, and you should not feel attacked or judged. You wrote this because this is how you feel. That isn't wrong. That was how you feel. I think you should be surrounded by support, instead of being told at least it isn't a deployment. Whether that is true or not, that isn't the point. You were venting. People need to respect that. We all have had our husbands away from us for training and deployments, and if we haven't, we will.

What ever happened to if you can't say something nice than don't say anything? I feel sad that people were one-upping and inconsiderate :( As military spouses, aren't we all in this together?

One time I blogged about my hubby (then boyfriend) being away at training. People commented saying things like my hubby is deployed. I was thinking to myself, What does this have to do with me, my blog, and my blog post? Nothing.

This honestly makes me scared and hesitant to blog about my thoughts and frustrations when I go through a deployment.

Julie Danielle said...

Oh I know how you feel. It is scary when you look ahead and see that he will be gone a lot or that he will work longer hours. I always get scared by that. *hugs* it will be okay I promise.

Allison said...

I'm sorry that Joe is going to have to work so much. I pray that once Charlotte comes you can get on a good schedule and the that the stress isn't too much. I can imagine how hard it is going to be, for you AND for Joe, but hopefully you both come out a little stronger.