Running and Deployments


I was running on the treadmill the other day… slowly. My head started doing what it often does when I begin running, telling me I wasn’t going to complete the two miles I set out to run. I pushed the thought aside and kept putting one foot in front of the other as an upbeat song played on my iPod and motivated me to keep going. Before the song ended, I looked down at the treadmill screen that read .25 miles completed.  I was one-eighth of the way done and that is when it hit me: I CAN do this. I have done it before.

I was that kid in middle school that couldn’t run. It wasn’t a lack of grace or asthma, it was my inability to breathe correctly, leading to me passing out near the finish line every time we had to run one mile in P.E.  As an adult, I decided I wanted to begin running. I bought a book, read magazines, and began building my mileage. After accomplishing 8 miles I decided I was ready and wanted to train for my first marathon. I completed my training through 16 miles and felt very confident that I was going to be able to cross off an amazing feat for the “pass-out-girl”. Three days after I ran my 16-mile run I was scheduled an easy-four. During that run I tore my meniscus and my Paris Marathon was cut short by 19 miles. (I attempted, stubborn me, and made it to mile 7 before getting on the “injured bus.”)

Then I started thinking… this is just like deployments. When my husband deploys, in the beginning there is some doubt, concern, and struggle. (I think it’s natural) However, just like running that two miles, I need to remember that I’ve done this before. (Even longer than this one.)  Then I realized the following juxtaposition of running and deployments: Continue reading


Getting Through Deployments

Month one- get something done

     Whatever is on your to-do list that you have been putting off, get it done. = great distraction
Month two- something for you
     Do something special for your deployed spouse. A special care package, a photo session and send a framed photo, etcetera. 
Month three- something for me
     You deserve it, go pamper yourself or buy something you want. Reward yourself for getting this far. 
Month four- get out the door
     Plan a trip- it doesn’t have to be far away or expensive, but plan an outing to do this month or when your spouse returns 
Month five- come alive
     Do something that makes you come alive. What is your passion? Dancing, painting, hiking, karaoke, etc. Plan and do something that excites you!
Month six- weekly mix
     Every week of this month, pick one thing to do from below:
          A) Make a playlist of music that represents your relationship
          B) Bake something and take it to another spouse of a deployed Soldier
          C) volunteer- give of your time and talents somewhere in your community (or your FRG!)
          D) get organized- go through your closets, cabinets, desks, and nooks and crannies and clean out the old (don’t be a hoarder- get rid if anything you haven’t used in a year or documents over 7 years old)
Month seven – just like heaven
     Make a list of all the things you miss about your spouse that makes your marriage heaven. One another piece of paper, write down anything that you don’t miss that YOU do when they are home. Now, take the two lists and make a goal to do more of list one and less of list two upon their return. (Each deployment / separation is an opportunity to see the good and the bad we are cultivating in our marriage. Take the time to take stock in what you have and where YOU can change *this is not about changing THEM)
Month eight- can’t wait
     Make a list of all of the things you can’t wait to do with your spouse. This can be a running list that you add to everyday. Keep a copy for yourself and send them one so you both can anticipate the reunion. 
Month nine- it is time. 
     This will be the longest month and the shortest. So much to do. Get involved with the FRG, if you haven’t already, and plan the reunion. Volunteer to help with the single Soldiers’ barracks, the welcome home decorating, and the reunion events. The more involved you are the faster this month will go!