Wednesday, July 27, 2011

music linkup week 23: When You Believe

This is a pre-scheduled post, since I am away at my awesome week-long Family Reunion.  My parents and all my brothers and sisters do this every other year, and it is AWESOME!  We'll be missing a few people this year, but if everyone came it would be my parents, their 8 children and 8 children-in-law (all of us are married) and their 25 grandchildren!  That's 43 people, if you DON'T count the 2 'almost' babies...grandchild #26 is due in a few weeks, and #27 is due in a couple months.  Both of the preggo mama's are here this week, though.  I think our highest count all week will be 36 people, which is still A LOT.

Last week's post was about the ONE person of those 43 who I want to see most - my estranged daughter.  If she is here this week, it will be nothing short of a miracle. (real update coming soon with reunion photos....I'll also be tweeting about the reunion, so if you're curious, follow me on twitter @deploymentagain)

So, in honor of my (foolish?) hope for a miracle, my song this week is "When You Believe" from the soundtrack to The Prince of Egypt.  I never knew that Michelle Pfeiffer had such a beautiful voice!

Have you linked up yet?

Saturday, July 23, 2011

reality vs virtual reality

In case you haven't noticed, I have been neglecting this blog a lot lately.  I've even neglected my facebook & twitter, to some extent.

Normally I use all of the 'virtual reality' social networking tools out there to sort of ESCAPE true reality, but lately, well, I've been DEALING.  Kinda.

I signed up for a local weight loss contest, which will begin September 10. It's also a charity fundraiser, so be looking for future posts from me soliciting donations. :)  I'll be tweeting about the contest throughout the 12 weeks.  It includes a mandatory weekly nutrition class, and mandatory group workout once a week, as well as a weekly weigh-in and group challenge.  If I ever fall "below the yellow line" (bottom 7 or 8 in that week's weight loss) then I will become ineligible for the GRAND PRIZE of $2,500.00

So, yeah, I am pretty motivated to stay at the top of the pack in this contest!

Reality, in and of itself, is often overrated - but either way, I am, well, DEALING.  Counseling is going well, and I've had some pretty frank discussions with hubby lately.  Not sure if anything will come of it, but at least I am no longer EATING my feelings.

Oh, and speaking of reality, I hope to meet some of my VIRTUAL friends in person at a beach gathering in about a week and a half!  If you live near Camp Pendleton and did not get an invite yet, please EMAIL ME so I can include you!

I'll be back to some regular blogging soon, because school is starting - which means I will have some sort of schedule again...some sort of 'normal'. I'm not looking forward to going back to my part-time job, but I am definitely looking forward to some early bedtimes around here. That magical hour after the kids are in bed is normally my Mommy Time.  AKA "wine o clock".  Not that I indulge in a glass of wine EVERY night, but I try to get to it at least 2 or 3 times a week. But, wine or no wine, that is also my time to catch up on the blogs that I follow, and to type or edit my own posts.

So, hopefully soon I will be blogging more, relaxing more, and putting ME first more, in just a few short weeks.  Thanks so much to all who hang in there with me in all these in-between times - especially those who take time to comment or means so much to me!  REALLY.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

music linkup week 22: Carmen

This week's song is another OLD one. It's actually 21 years old, just like my daughter, "Airhead". She's been on my mind a lot lately, especially since she *MIGHT* be coming to our family reunion next week!  It has been almost 4 years since she left. I saw her in town about a year later, and she walked away from me - so technically it's been less than three years since I last "SAW" her.

So, this song is a really sad one.....the line, "The people say, out of all the things she did, the worst one was just leaving, without saying goodbye" really makes me think of my daughter, and how she ran away when she found out I was going to make good on my threat to take away her car if she ditched school again.  In the end, I sold the car to buy her a bus pass (school bussing costs big bucks here) but she took off to her dad's and finished her senior year on home study - JUST TO SPITE ME.  So, if she ever comes back, I still owe her the $1225 from the sale of her car.  We helped her buy it, but she had paid us back by the time we found out she was habitually truant. *sigh*  The line in the song is actually referring to the girl, Carmen, committing suicide, but in a lot of ways, my dear Airhead is dead to us.  Or so she would like to believe.

She haunts me, though.  I am constantly second-guessing myself, wondering what I could/should have done differently to keep her here with me, at least through her high school graduation.  To keep her at least SPEAKING to me.  Through all the reflection, AKA self-torture, I've decided that the only things I would REALLY do differently with her if I had it to do over again is to change two important events: I would NOT let her go stay with her dad when she was 13 and threw that epic tantrum, and I would NOT let her spend that summer with my loser brother in Florida the year she turned 16.  Both of those events contributed to her being the little SNOT that treated me horribly and then broke my heart by taking off the way she did.

If she actually comes to the reunion next week, I know she still will not want anything to do with ME, but it will be so great just to see her, and for her to meet her baby brother, and for the rest of the family to hang out with her.  We had already scheduled to have my photographer friend come down for one day of the reunion to take pictures - I hope Airhead is there on that day, so I can get a good picture of all four of my kids together!

Have you linked up yet?  Go do it!  Click here:

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

music linkup week 21: Gives You Hell

Hey everyone, it's that time again!

I'm not making a lot of progress on my weight loss goal lately, but when I DO work out, for some reason this song gives me a little more energy. Seriously, no idea why. ha ha ha :)

So, what's YOUR song this week?  Use the button below to go visit the lovely Amber at Goodnight Moon and link up so we can hear it.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

music linkup week 20! "Precious"

Hello again blogland......another week of good intentions gone by. I seriously thought that I would be blogging every day this week, as I have had SO MUCH on my mind.  Unfortunately I can't sort it out enough to write it down. Maybe I'll eventually just give up and post some of the nonsensical rambling I'm hearing in my head.

Anyway, you all know I NEVER miss the lovely Amber's music linkup, and this crazy week is no exception.

It's been too long since I've posted a song from Depeche Mode, my all-time favorite band. This one is from "Playing The Angel" which came out in 2005, when hubby was deployed for the first time.  I got to go to the concert in San Diego, the first stop in the US, along with my sister, my brother, and my brother's wife.


Then, when hubby came home the following April, his unit had a dinner in Vegas, and Depeche Mode was performing at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino.  I scored tickets, & was so excited that hubby could come to the concert with me, but it was the

The "outdoor ampitheater" listed on our tickets was really just bleachers set up in the parking lot.  There were port-a-potties, and I made the mistake of trying to use one in the dark *shudder*.... Since the parking lot was the venue, the 5 story parking structure was blocked by all the limo/taxi traffic that would have been using that parking lot.....and we were stuck on the third level of the parking structure for more than five hours AFTER the concert ended.  On top of all this mess, Dave Gahan (lead singer) had laryngitis.  He sounded just awful.  The next day the band's publicist announced they were cancelling the next several stops on their tour.

Anyway, that's really why I chose this song - to remind me that something I love can disappoint me, and I can still love it anyway.  DM, you still rock!

Oh yeah, and the lyrics to this one really speak to my mood right now. (go back a post if you're lost).

Have you linked up yet?  If not, go on over to Goodnight Moon, and link up right now!

Saturday, July 2, 2011


I've been trying so hard not to badmouth my husband on here, or air our dirty laundry, etc.  But so many of you can clearly see how much I am hurting, even if you don't have all the dirty details. If nothing else, I am sure most of you have noticed the lack of real posts on here lately.  Linkups, sure.  Recipes, why not? But actual posts, with CONTENT, substance? Nope. Not lately.  I've just been keeping it all inside (or trying to).

So tonight, my fourth sleepless night this week, I am spilling my guts - in hopes that it will clear my head so I can at least get some sleep.  Or, maybe talking about what I am going through can help someone else to avoid this painful situation?

I'm still skimming over a lot of details, but need to get the general story out.

There has never been physical abuse in this marriage, and there still isn't. But there has been some serious verbal and emotional abuse.  Once, about 8 years ago, the verbal abuse got so bad that I wanted to die.  I was honestly planning my own suicide.  I knew my children would be devastated if I took the cowardly route I was considering, so I didn't follow through with it.  Somehow in a rare moment of clarity, I also realized that my children were being harmed by what they were witnessing.  What was I teaching them by ALLOWING anyone to treat me that way?

So I stood up for myself, told him to get out.  He refused to leave, so I left....sort of. There was this big dramatic scene straight out of an after school special, where he begged me not to go, then physically blocked the door so I couldn't leave, and even refused to move his car so I couldn't get mine out.  I pretended to have a spine, for the sake of my kids, and left ON FOOT. Knucklehead was just a toddler at the time, so I had him in his stroller, and had Bonehead (then about 7 years old) holding on to the handle of the stroller. The few possessions I had managed to grab on the way out the door were stuffed into the little basket underneath.  I didn't have a plan, didn't even have a cell phone, so I headed down the block toward town in search of a payphone, frantically going through a mental list of WHO I could even call.....where would we even go?

And then he caught up with me, all apologies, begging and pleading with me to stay. And, predictably, I caved - but only after getting him to PROMISE me that he would get some counseling, go to some kind of anger management, etc. He didn't actually go to any counseling, at least not at that point.  But the yelling, name calling, and general disrespect he had been showing me did stop. He simply replaced it with other forms of emotional abuse.

And I took it.

It's not fair to characterize him ONLY as this bully, because he is so much more than that. (Duh. Why else would I stay?) He is smart, funny, and of course VERY good looking.  He has this way of looking at me from across a crowded room and making me feel as if I am the only woman in the world - like he is not aware that the rest of the world even exists, when he looks at me like that. He can kiss me in a way that makes me SURE he's some kind of wizard or something, because there is absolute MAGIC in those lips. He makes me feel indescribably good - when he's not making me feel like I am *this big*.

Throughout several more years, as we both grew, changed, and matured some, the mental/emotional abuse diminished. There are a lot of reasons for this, most of which I am only beginning to understand right now.  But when things came to a head 2 years ago, and our marriage was 'over' (or so I thought) I had to really do some deep soul searching.  I had to figure out WHO I was, and why I had let this man drive me crazy (literally) by convincing me that I was crazy.  Sounds funny to say it that way, but that's the most basic way I can break down what he did to me in those years.

I had to heal that 'crazy' before I could do anything else, and the process was (IS) very painful.

When I made the life-changing decision to take him back, to start over again, it was with a lot more knowledge, confidence, and (finally) backbone than I had ever had before.  After months of 'separation' and preparing for a divorce, we both had regrets, but didn't want to waste time looking back - just wanted to move forward, to our future TOGETHER.  We both swore, never again would we hurt each other or let anyone else hurt us. Ever.

So we moved forward, and while I can't claim things were picture perfect, we were at least 'whole'. I was a whole person, HE was a whole person, and we were a whole US.  He had finally gotten counseling before the big split, and continued it after we got back together. We still had disagreements, but we handled them like grownups, and kept moving the baby we had both been wanting to have for ten years, among other things.

Nothing is ever perfect, but for about six months we functioned well, we grew and matured even more, and we cherished each other.  Then we conceived Bobblehead the same week that he got orders for deployment. We had about 4 months before his actual departure, but of course there were trainings and workups, so things got a little strained.  But we dealt with it.  Mature, loving adults, facing all of these challenges TOGETHER.

By the time he left for Afghanistan in May 2010, I was convinced that everything we'd been through so far had made us strong enough to get through anything. 
(fun fact about me: I am terminally NAIVE)

Something happened to him over there, and while he fights his way back to some kind of normal, he has reverted to some of the same crappy behavior from years earlier......initially it was just this ridiculously huge invisible wall that he put up between us when he came home in December. But within a couple weeks, I started feeling the way I used to with him, years ago: small. insignificant. nothing.

I fell back into the old 'battered woman' habits of making excuses for him.

"He's still getting used to being home, he just needs time/space/etc"

"He's dealing with all the changes that took place while he was gone - especially the new baby"

"He doesn't KNOW how much he's hurting me, or he would definitely stop."

"I'm just being too sensitive because of my own issues (post partum depression, etc.)"

After a couple of months with no improvement, I begged him to get help for his 'issues'. He still refuses to acknowledge any kind of mental health problems, but he made all the promises, said all the right words.  And still  kept this distance between us.

I sought counseling on my own, because I did NOT want to go back to the darkness I used to live in.  Counseling has helped me, more than anything to be very clear and very specific when asking him for what I want or need.

And still, six months after his return, he won't open up, connect, or really BE here with me.

Can't? Won't? at this point there is little difference, as far as I am concerned. The result is still the same.

I still have this horrible emptiness inside me, and I continue to fill that void with food.  Every pound I gain is a testament to my own misery and weakness....and HIS weakness, in my view.  I keep thinking, if he could only be strong enough to live up to the promises he made in those six months before active duty, and those four months before he actually left....if he could just be strong enough to really COME BACK to us, then things would be OK.

And then I think that *I* need to be the strong one, need to move on and get healthy, inside and out. For me, and for my kids. But I can't find a way to do any of that and still stay in this painful marriage.

I feel so much guilt for even considering LEAVING (or asking him to leave) when he's clearly suffering.  He's fragile, and needs me now more than ever, whether he knows that or not.  It's not HIS fault that he came back so damaged, right? He's made so much progress in his professional life in the past few months...still a long way to go to 'normal' but he is at least FUNCTIONAL.  I still love him every bit as much as I did before he left for that third deployment.....

But is it really OK for me to suffer through this - IN FRONT OF MY CHILDREN?  They see all of this, they know that dad makes mom cry ALL.THE.TIME.  They don't have to know the details of how or why he is torturing me, to see the devastating results.

The burning question that keeps me awake at night, is "What am I teaching my children by allowing anyone to treat me this way?"

Will my boys grow up to be mean, manipulative, abusive husbands?  If they do, I have no one else to will be MY fault.

Friday, July 1, 2011


I know my posts have lacked a certain 'positive' quality lately, but that is because my life seems to lack the same.  But not really.  I mean, when I really think about it, there are a lot of great moments in my life, every single day.

OK, well ALMOST every single day.

So, to balance out my whining, complaining, crazy posts, here is a sampling of the things that made me smile this week:

1. Hubby sent me a text message while at work, to thank me for helping him with something. The message included lots of X's and O's, and he said I was a DOLL.  He never says stuff like this, so it really made me smile.

2. I took the boys to the beach and got to spend 3 blissful relaxing hours with THIS:

How can you do anything but smile at that sweet face?

3. I made these EPIC cookies this week:

Yes, those are double-stuff oreos inside the chocolate chip cookies.
I am playing with the recipe a little, and will do a recipe post as soon as I have it where I want it. But this first batch was, well, EPIC.

4. I also made hubby some fantastic cake balls this week.  Sort of a late birthday cake, because last week on his actual birthday I tried to make Rachel Ray's brownie waffles (or waffle brownies?) and it was a total FAIL.  So I think these made up for it:

5. I got my hair cut this week, for the first time in 8 months.  I'm posting a before and after pic (don't mind my puffy, makeup-free face.....I did a fair amount of crying before this particular smile, and have not been getting enough sleep.  And the lack of makeup, well it has been hotter than a donkey's balls here this week - any makeup I put on will just disappear as I sweat, so I didn't even bother.)

I'm hoping that next week I will have an even LONGER list of things that made me smile. Isn't that something we should all hope for?
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