Monday, June 1, 2009

Reality is setting in

David sort of found out some news about the deployment but we do not have a date yet! I will tell you this, he will be leaving sooner than we thought! I thought I was ready! I mean, lets just rip off this band-aid and get it over with. Then I checked the mail and got my newsletter from the Airman and Family Readiness Center. They send out newsletters to spouses of deployed troops. I used to get them every month when David was deployed to Iraq. It was a deja vu (sp?) moment all over again and it really sunk in that he is about to deploy! Anywho, the newsletter had an article about the stages of deployment. I thought I would share the article because it is dead on.

Pre-deployment is the phase from the time of notification of deployment to the actual departure of the service member. It is often a time of psychological denial of the event, intense preparation, and anticipation of the departure.

Deployment is the phase from the time of significant emotional turmoil as the family tries to regain its equilibrium after the departure of a parent. Feelings can include numbness, sadness, and feelings of isolation or abandonment. many responsibilities of the absent parent need to be absorbed by the remaining family members and a new balance is established. Communication from the deployed member upon arrival can be tremendously reassuring.

Substainment is the phase that spans from one month post deployment to one month prior to return. In most adaptive families it is marked by "settling into the new routine" and going on about regular business, utilizing whatever resources either within or outside of the family are available. Should a family not be able to return to business-as-usual, this could impact negatively on the development of children within the family. Some children may have a difficult time during this period, in the absence of a parent, and may develop symptoms that should be readily identified and appropriately dealt with.

Re-deployment is the phase that spans from one-month prior to return to the actual physical return of the service member to the family. This is a period of intense anticipation, with conflicting emotions and possibly some anxiety along with the excitement.

Post-deployment is the phase that begins with the return of the service member and ends with the reestablishment of family equilibrium. Generally, this period may take from one to several months. The homecoming can be a time of great excitement and jubilation. But, it also can result in frustration and feeling let down due to unmet unrealistic fantasies about the reunion. Service members may become frustrated in finding that the family has moved on in their absence and that changes have been made in family functioning that they were not involved in.

For me, the pre-deployment phase, re-deployment, and post were the hardest phases for me when David deployed to Iraq. The pre-deployment is a famous military term known as hurry up and wait! For months they are working on getting everything in order for the deployment that it starts to consume your life. Then it gets close to time for him to leave and I feel sick to my stomach, lump in my throat, and I cannot sleep. This time around, we have stayed really busy with fun weekend trips with the kids. David and I even had a romantic get away! I cannot tell my parents thank you enough for watching them so we could have time together before he leaves.

We have lots planned to stay busy during the deployment. I usually do really well until a month before he is set to come back home. Then I go into the re-deployment phase and I am cranky, anxious, impatient, and just tired of it all!

I am sure no one is reading this long blog post. Maybe I just wanted to type it all out for Tyler and Landon. But if you are reading it and you see me while David is gone and I am cranky, irritable, or whatever my bad mood may be then please bare with me. I hate being away from my best friend!!


  1. I read your whole blog!!! I like this idea, keeps everyone updated when we are all so busy!!! Thanks a lot!!

  2. We cannot imagine what the military life is like but we are proud of how strong you are during the time David is gone. We are here if you ever need us and we are glad you have started this blog to keep us updated on him while he is gone, cause we know that we probably won't get to talk to him much. We are so proud of him and of you.


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