Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The best-laid plans

For quite some time, Gary and I have had a plan of when we'd like to put a bebeh in my belleh. Then, we came up on orders and our plan became contingent upon whether or not we'd have a 4th deployment.


At the first house we lived on-post at Campbell, I was talking to my neighbor, whose husband was on his 5th deployment, when she said, "I don't even cry anymore; I'm just used to it"

I completely get where she's coming from, but I wouldn't say I feel the same. When he's gone, I still have those periodic lonely sobs at night; I still don't get used to him being gone on holidays; I still don't feel completely right.

I would, however, say that the sadness doesn't last anywhere as long as it did the first couple deployments. That feeling of sadness rooted in the pit of my stomach subsides much more easily not because I'm ok with him being gone, but because I've found a way to cope with it.

And, now, we've already been warned of deployment next year. And, not just one time frame where once we pass it, we feel the relief that we escaped another tour. There are, now, two time frames we have to try to dodge next year.

I couldn't help it, I immediately got teary-eyed when he told me.

It, kind of, blindsided me because I had, involuntarily, become very hopeful that we'd finished our last deployment. Campbell is one of the top-deploying posts in the Army, so I'd thought hoped we'd fly under the overseas radar.

And, now the question of baby-making has us going back and forth.

We planned Jake very shortly after Gary got back from his second deployment. Gary was here for the entire pregnancy and every prenatal appointment but one, the first 8 1/2 months of this life, to include first birthday, first Christmas, and second birthday. Those are absolutely huge accomplishments for the military family. And, for that we were beyond thankful.

Now, with two possible deployments looming over us, we're not sure how to tackle things. Do we get pregnant with the possibility of him leaving a few short weeks after the birth, or maybe miss the birth altogether? Or, do we get pregnant right before he deploys (rumor has it deployments are now only going to last 9-10 months) and have him miss my appointments and baby-kicks and talking to my belly and, again, possibly the birth?

So many of my friends live near their families. They need a babysitter? Done. They need a break? Done. Not to imply I have it so much worse because we're so far from family, but that mental cushion of having grandma just a neighborhood away would be nice some days.

And, the part that seems the most daunting is having two babies by myself. I've been through many deployments, I've been through a deployment with a baby, but the task of two during a deployment still seems so daunting. I suppose it's one of those things where you work it up terribly in your head and then you end up realizing what you're capable of.

My good friend, Amy, is an absolute hero to me. Her husband was deployed with mine and she had a 3 year old, and recovered from a c-section, all the while caring for her new (and wayyy too adorable for words) baby girl. She didn't have oodles of help. She didn't run home and throw her kids at someone else to raise. She's a total champion.

I've been relying on her a lot lately because we both had an unplanned c-section. We both know what recovery is like. Yet she still did it. To be honest, she kicked the crap out of it. She's reassured me that it can be done, and will be done, and everyone comes out the other side stronger and more capable because of it.

The last 6-8 weeks of my pregnancy, I was on bedrest. No matter how healthily I maintained my pregnant self, pre-eclampsia still was able to sneak up on me. I was elliptical 3 days a week and prenatal yoga twice a week and it still didn't exempt me from such a diagnosis. What if it sneaks up again? What if I'm on bedrest, and I have a toddler? I know my family would come out to help, but they can't live here. Of course, extenuating circumstances would probably change that fact, now that I think about it.

I don't know, it just seems so scary to think about. I consider myself a strong person, and I thoroughly enjoy self-sufficiency (not that I don't mind help at all, I just like that I am able self-sufficient), Ya know?

But, I know thousands of military spouses do it everyday. I know it's doable because I've seen it, because there's no other option. I think about all my friends who've done it, and I'm in awe. People have called me strong and it just doesn't seem appropriate. I feel like I'm just doing what needs to be done. And, I guess that means I can do it again.

Because it's what needs to be done.

1 comment:

Erin said...

It's such a tough decision. You are really damned if you do and damned if you don't. In your case you have to weigh having him around for pregnancy complications vs having him miss the first year. We were lucky that when I was on bedrest this pregnancy, my husband was home and I am not sure how I would have made it without him being home. That said, I don't know how strict bedrest is for pre e. I was only allowed to pee and shower once a day, so I was pretty useless on my own. But if you were on more of a modified bed rest, you could probably handle it. Also, who says you will get pre-e again. I have a friend that had severe pre-e her first pregnancy, and just delivered a baby boy this week full term with no pre-e at all.