Rainbows and Unicorns

This is a difficult topic for me, explaining for my absence while I sort through it all. My husband returned from Afghanistan nearly two months ago and it hasn’t been like you see on TV. It’s not been like the other wives talk about. That running across the room, jumping into each others arms, crying real tears of joy and not letting go. That pure, ecstatic joy that you just can’t control. I want one thing clear before I go any further:

I love my husband. I do now, and always have, love him with all that I am. The thought of not having him in my life everyday kills me.

I just don’t always feel it. When my daughter was born, she was a complete stranger. I didn’t know her, so I couldn’t love her in that mystical way mother’s often describe. There was no instant bond. I had to learn to love her and who she was (and is) growing to become. The way she sucks her finger when she’s nervous. The way she takes showers so she doesn’t have to sit in the bath water. The height of her laughter and her ability to make checks with stripes work magnificently. I had to learn to love her. Taking this pressure off myself when my son was born, knowing I wouldn’t feel that “magical bond” with him, actually made bonding with him a lot easier. I put too much pressure on myself and I always fail.

This is what I did at homecoming. Every homecoming is different. You’ve got the couples that can’t wait to run down the stairs and jump into each others arms and kiss like nobody else exists and the world has stopped spinning just for them. You’ve got the couples who are quietly holding each other in the middle of the chaos, just standing there, silently thankful for answered prayers. You’ve got the couples who are loudly screaming and yelling and jumping around like tailgaters at the Super Bowl after a touchdown, and they don’t care who is around. You’ve got the wives who brought large signs. Babies who’ve never met their father. Children and parents running to their family member, their soldier, their hero. It’s very overwhelming for people like me…

It puts a lot of pressure to feel what they feel, to express those feelings the way that they do, try to find balance and not fall.

I chose to stand at the top of the bleachers waving my arms like a mad woman with the kids on the steps in front of me doing the same. It still took him a minute to find us, but it was worth it. The hard part is that I felt very little for my husband in that moment. There was no “heart knowledge” of the love we have shared for the past seven and a half years. I know in my head that I love him very much, but in that moment, he was a stranger. I was more excited to see him with the kids. Holding them, kissing them, just talking to them. I didn’t care to talk to him myself. Holding him, kissing his face, none of that mattered to me. My children had their father and that is all that mattered. I put pressure on myself and I failed. I expected something different than I had experienced before and I shouldn’t have.

To put this into perspective, since I got married in November 2005, I have seen my mother for a total of 14 days. Three days when my daughter was born in 2006. One week when my sister graduated high school in May 2006. Four days when Little Brother was nearly two, in 2011. I feel very little love towards my mother. In fact, if not for her being my mother, I’m not sure I’d ever have contact with her. When I don’t have constant contact with someone in a meaningful way, I lose my ability to genuinely care for them. This is what happened during the deployment. Nine months of my breath catching when the doorbell rang. Nine months of my blood going cold when an unfamiliar car appeared in my driveway. Nine months of stealing myself for the worst, remaining brave for the kids and putting on a happy face… Nine months of building a wall around my heart to protect myself from the worst outcome possible…

That’s not an easy thing to tear down.

We’ve been working on it since he got home, but in those first few days it was like living with a stranger. We had both changed so much and neither of us knew what to really expect. Nothing seemed to be going right. In the past few weeks, there have been long nights, intimate discussions, and a lot of tears. Old hurts are finally starting to heal and we are coming together as a couple again. It should be romantic. The idea of “falling in love” all over again. In truth, it sucks and it hurts. This is my husband. He is the father of my children. I should have the heart knowledge of love for him. I should feel it after having him gone for so long, but I think I’m expecting too much of myself at this point. The “head knowledge” is there. I know there is no one else I would rather be with. There will never be anyone else. I’ve just got to take the time for my heart to catch up.

Hopefully, with old hurts beginning to heal, this will allow us to come together more fully and allow us to become more vulnerable with each other and that will help bridge that gap between the head and the heart. Some days are easier than others. He’ll do something or say something and all I feel is love. Other days, I truly struggle with the man beside me. The man that has promised to always stand beside me. The man that I promised to always stand beside.

We aren’t standing still anymore. We’ve moved. The ground beneath us has shifted and we are struggling to find where that leaves us once the ground goes still again.

For nine months, the ground shifted, twisted, and turned under our feet. For nine months, we were on different planets, shifting and twisting and turning in different ways. We’ve had two months to work on us. We’ve had some really horrible moments… We’ve had some really great times…

It’s called Marriage.

Slacker Blogging

I seem to have become depressed over the past week. I’ve been taking the death of the cat very hard…

As a result, my blog is suffering. Sorry guys.

I promise to get back with it this week. More Autism Awareness blogs and the 30 Day Drawing Challenge posts are coming this week. I will get caught up and finish on time. I promise.

I’ve sent my husband an email to help me stay on task and focus. I need things to keep me moving…

On a side note, I will be updating on my 29 Things list soon… I’m failing myself already, and it’s only April…

Honestly, Asperger’s

When people really love you, they wont talk about you behind your back. They wont belittle you when you aren’t around. They wont ignore you. When people really love you, they wont blame you for their own bad day. They wont make you feel like a child being reprimanded. When people really love you, they make the effort for you, to be there when you need them, even when you don’t ask because you don’t know how to ask for help. They will do there best to understand the “why” behind your actions and help you to work through a tough spot. They step up and stand in when times are tough. For me, this is black and white, there is no grey area. I’m coming to the conclusion that this is not the case for all people.


Sometimes, I don’t know what to do with myself. I’m not a good person all the time. I don’t know how to behave socially and some situations are emotionally exhausting to get through. I simply can’t socialize for long periods of time on little sleep or when times are hard and stress is high without having some major slip ups, the holidays typically make this worse. I interrupt or say inappropriate things because my brain simply cannot process as fast as you can. I may be taking a break to regain my thoughts and by the time I’m ready to finish what I was saying, you’ve moved on to something else. It’s much harder to control my thoughts and keep them to myself when I’m under pressure and am stressed out. I don’t know how to communicate in a normal social situation effectively and am often misunderstood and put people on the defensive without meaning to. My brain often obsesses about situations and encounters until I have convinced myself that nobody likes me or that certain people in particular are mad at me.


I feel stupid in most social situations and often play through events over and over and over again trying to figure out what I did right and what I did wrong. Everything is black and white. I see things very linearly. I don’t trust people who have ever violated my trust in the past, even over something small. You have proven yourself untrustworthy in my mind and I am working on learning how to rebuild that trust. I carry past hurts and burdens because I don’t know how to tell people that they have hurt me. I don’t know how to discuss these events where my trust has been betrayed and my feelings hurt without becoming angry. I feel this is because of the way I process information. When I am initially slighted, I feel angry and betrayed, but I’m told holding on to those feelings isn’t good. Unfortunately, it was never explained to me how to properly deal with them, so I ignore it and things continue on as they were before for days, weeks, months and even years without the other person ever knowing they have hurt me. I do this to keep the peace. A “lady” doesn’t start arguments and it’s her “job” to keep the family civil and together. Unfortunately, I always slip up somewhere. I can’t keep up social pretenses for long periods of time without getting exhausted and drained. Many people over the years have hurt me in one way or the other and then they question my ability to go to them for support. They see their actions in my life as supportive, I don’t and mostly because of these past hurts.


I have Asperger’s Syndrome. I’m not crazy, I don’t have Bipolar Disorder and I’m not psychotic. WE (Hubby and I) have decided that I don’t need a piece of paper telling me who I am or how I function. I know when I’ve hit my limits and if you don’t care to learn my limits, I’m sorry that I ruined your day. I communicate much more effectively in writing and am very awkward when talking to people face to face or on the phone. The phone is particularly difficult because I can hear your tone of voice but without the facial cues to go with in, I’m lost. I don’t know when you are done talking or when you are taking a breath. I can’t tell if what you are saying is meant in jest, in love, or in rebuke. And please remember that the last time I participated in phone calls on a regular basis was in 2005, and mostly I was talking to Hubby.


I have sensory issues involving temperature and smell, mostly, but textures of certain foods and the lighting at certain times of day is bothersome too. I enjoy being outside in the sunshine, but that much light often hurts my eyes physically. Loud noises seem louder to me and often startle me. I scare easily and I think in videos and pictures. I often obsess about the things that nobody else cares about or even remembers. (Like that meme thingy about the penguins knees from yesterday… I’m still wondering if penguins have knees.) My life is not easy. But nobody’s life is easy. I have my schedule and my calendars and my charts to keep me focused and moving each day. I have a chore chart so that I don’t forget to do the laundry or load the dishwasher. In a lot of ways, I’m still very childlike.


I need some extra patience and assistance the first time experiencing something. I have no basis for comparison other that what I can see, hear, touch, taste and smell for myself. When I have never gone through something before, the stress is compounded so much more. I don’t know what to expect, I don’t know how to behave, I don’t have any previous knowledge to fall back on. I love my books but even they can’t prepare you for everything. It’s incredibly hard not knowing what is expected of you, or even knowing what IS expected and not being able to live up to those expectations. It’s hard when the one person who helps explain all of this and guides me through is halfway around the world.


I’m lost. I’m thrown into situations every day that I don’t know how to handle and I don’t have someone to hold my hand. I need someone to hold my hand. I need someone to be the “Leonard to my Sheldon”, so to speak.Hubby sometimes calls me “Sheldon” and I’ve always looked on it as a term of endearment because he truly does understand me and he works very hard to help me understand others and why something I have said or done could be considered rude or “bratty”.


I need to be more transparent. I need you to be more transparent, too. Please don’t ask general questions like “How are you doing?”. You will most likely get an answer that makes me sound like a bitch because I don’t understand that question. How am I doing what? Are we painting when you ask and you are referencing my technique? Are you questioning my use of a flathead screwdriver instead of a phillips? Is my driving that bad? Are you asking about the kids in school? Or behavior problems at home? Are you asking if I’ve burned dinner recently or whether I can keep the house running while Hubby is gone? “How are you doing?” is such a stupid question to me because there are so many ways to answer it and most of them wont even touch your intent behind the question. The numerous amounts of ways this could be answered leads me into a deep confusion and I often feel stupid and incoherent in my response. This is particularly true when you ask via email, text message, FB message or other written forms of communication.


Please help me out by being specific. Ask things like “How are the kids handling the deployment? Are they having any major problems since he’s been gone?” and things like “Have you been able to take some time for yourself? That’s important too.” Being asked a specific question allows me a limited range of answers and I’m more likely to have a tactful response and not be overwhelmed by the question. But be patient. It takes time for my brain to process the question you asked and formulate the answer. If you end up with a curt reply, I most likely felt rushed through my answer and to be completely honest, pushing people away is a default response for me when I’m faced with an overwhelming situation. To avoid answering the question or to avoid making a fool of myself, I will respond as quickly as possible even if that means I come across rude. This is not my intention, but something has made me overwhelmed or uncomfortable and my body is telling me to GET OUT OF HERE!


I am working on some of these issues. Hubby began working on some of them with me before me left. I’m doing the best I can right now. Please remember that I’ve had 28 years to learn how to hide my stimming. The way my arm twitches (it jerks really, and can be quite painful if it persists for too long) when I’m stressed out and overly emotional, the way I fidget with my jewelry when I’m nervous. The calm presence I can maintain even while my heart threatens to beat out of my own chest and run off because the anxiety is too much. I talk with my fingers at times because my brain is going too fast and my mouth can’t keep up. If you ever see me talking with one hand in the air as if I’m pushing buttons on the wall, this is my way of trying to slow down my brain so the rest of me can catch up. My brain is always going a mile a minute and I am never able to truly relax. I don’t know what it would be like to feel “stress free”. My brain is always running on about something and I’m still thinking about those penguin knees, even now.


I’m trying to grow (not change) who I am so that others will be better able to respond to me and communication can go more effectively. I will have rough spots because tact isn’t something I’m good at. I don’t have a particularly good brain to mouth filter, and Google doesn’t have a “tact translator” (although I think it should).


I'm sure this is how my husband feels most of the time. I truly do appreciate his support and help.

I’m sure this is how my husband feels most of the time. I truly do appreciate his support and help.

Soul Mates

The amazing thing about knowing you’ve married your soul mate is when thousands of miles apart, separated by continents and oceans, and having gone months without seeing each other, you still manage to get each other the exact same thing for Valentine’s Day.

That is the status update I posted to Facebook just moments ago. You see, that package, the one my husband sent from Afghanistan for Valentine’s Day, it finally arrived today. I waited all afternoon, just like he asked, so that he could see my face on Skype when I opened it. It’s not a large envelope. Maybe seven inches high, nine inches wide, but it had my name on it and a post mark from an APO and that’s all that matters. Opening the envelope, I pulled out a letter. Just a small slip of paper, carefully torn out of the little green notebooks he meticulously writes everything down in. I know this by the size and line layout on the page.

Along with this tiny, hand-written note is a block of Post-It sticky notes. My husband has been putting these on his computer monitor when he needs to remember something important, like when to call home or something I’ve told him that I want him to take a look into. This block of Post-It notes is about 100 or more thick. At the top of each sticky page is a date, beginning with Feb 14.

From my husband to me.

From my husband to me.

Hand-written on each of these 100 or more notes is a Bible verse, a song lyric, or other writing to show love, encouragement, appreciation or support. Some of them are silly, like the one that reads “Be Sexy (That is all)”, some are more thoughtful and some are serious. But the greatest gift I think we could have given each other was this support, and what are the odds that we both thought of the same thing this year?

My husband and I have always joked and said “Get out of my head!” more times than I can count. If you remember my Valentine’s Thankful Thursday post, I made my husband a book with a deck of cards and two pieces of rope. A list of 52 (well 53) reasons that I love him. Things like “You look hot in your uniform!” and “You kill the SPIDERS”. Again, some silly, some serious, some thoughtful.

From me to my husband.

From me to my husband.

I love my husband so much.

The amazing thing about knowing you’ve married your soul mate is when thousands of miles apart, separated by continents and oceans, and having gone months without seeing each other, you still manage to get each other the exact same thing for Valentine’s Day.

Thankful Thursday: Valentine’s Day Edition

There is so much about love that is misunderstood. So many aspects of love. A multitude of ways to show love and even more ways to feel it. For someone like me, who has trouble regulating a normal emotional system for long periods of time and can’t always understand the emotions behind people’s actions, love is a strange concept.

I love my kids.

I love my husband.

But I don’t feel love for myself.

I don’t feel love for my extended family.

I say the words “I love you”, but that doesn’t mean that I’m feeling it. It means, I feel it is expected, so I say it. This generally occurs when someone says it first and I’m programmed to say it in response so as to avoid hurt feelings.

But love in general is a good thing. It heels deeply broken hearts and creates the most warm and fuzzy feelings inside. When we know we are loved, when we feel it in our deepest core, is there any better feeling? Well, since Valentine’s Day is on Thursday this year, I would like to share with you the moment of my day when I felt the most loved.

Obviously, with my husband in Afghanistan, the romantic dinner and night out without the kids wasn’t on the menu for us this year (or last year since he was at Fort Knox for some training or equipment pickup or something:Army 2, Me 0). I really wasn’t expecting him to call. We’ve had issues with communication in regard to phone calls in the past and this resulted in his not calling home on Thanksgiving or on Christmas, so when the phone rang with that random six-digit phone number, I was surprised and thrilled that he called home on Valentine’s Day.

Once the initial shock wore off, he told me “Take the day off” (To which I’m thinking, “Ummm… Okay, but you aren’t gonna know if I sit on my ass all day or not, so, ummm, thanks?” And by this point, I had already rearranged the dining room twice trying to figure out where the table could go during my daughter’s birthday party next weekend.). He continued, “Don’t even worry about the kitchen (how did he know I hadn’t done dishes in three days?), dinner is on me.”

This is the point in the conversation where my brain seriously went blank and the processor in the thought formation center of my brain slowed to a grinding halt. I was totally confused, but in the same moment, I knew what he had done. It’s a very odd feeling to describe, but it was accompanied by a huge grin and some tears. He told me, “Dinner would be delivered around five.”

(Have I mentioned how much I love my husband? Other girls got flowers, but I’m pretty sure I’m the only one who got dinner.)

We spoke on the phone for 16 minutes before hanging up and moving to Skype, so that he could watch me open the gift he ordered me from Pajama Gram.

Side Note: Dear Pajama Gram,
Stop putting your name on the side of the box,
it totally ruins the surprise.
Sincerely, R. Noba

Anyway, my husband had ordered me two sets of Raspberry/Leopard print pajamas (one for warm nights, one for colder weather). And no, they don’t look like that on me. I’d venture to say the model in the picture is at least six inches taller than me (or at least she appears to be).

I’ve still got one more coming, but it seems mailing things from Afghanistan two weeks early isn’t enough time. This being the first time that he’s mailed something home, I can’t be too upset that it isn’t here yet. I’ve heard that letters and smaller boxes can take up to three times longer to get there from here than larger boxes, though I have no idea why that is.

So for now, I wait for more love to come in the mail.

Dinner arrived at 4:58 and the gentleman apologized for delivering early, seems he had another five o’clock delivery.

One Cheese Pizza, One Pepperoni Pizza and One Desert Pizza! We had dinner for three days lol

One Cheese Pizza, One Pepperoni Pizza and One Desert Pizza! We had dinner for three days lol

This is what I sent my husband. He said it made him feel warm and fuzzy inside… Well, no he didn’t. He compared it to the Father’s Day before Basic Training, when I made him a calendar using a small photo book, so he could mark the time while he was gone (since he would be gone at least six months, possibly longer). I used pictures that meant something to us as the images for each month, so February was pictures from our daughter’s birth, July was from our son’s birth, November from our wedding. He said this new “book” made him feel much the same way that one did. Truly loved and special. He’s read through it once already and is now taking a new “Reason” every day. He should get through it twice before he comes home from Afghanistan. So many people have given this gift idea a bad wrap, saying “guys really just want sex” but my husband felt appreciated and loved when he opened the box we sent him… And honestly, him knowing we have his back is the best gift we could have given him.

52 Reasons I love you... Though admittedly, I cheated. I added an extra "I just do" to the back of the deck... Every book has writing on the back cover, right?

52 Reasons I love you… Though admittedly, I cheated. I added an extra “I just do” to the back of the deck… Every book has writing on the back cover, right?

Thankful Thursday: Jan 10th Edition

Look mom, a month late!

So, I sat down to write this post SEVERAL times over the last month and each time, I found myself in a less than grateful mood. I have no idea why, but I just could not think of what to write. I’ve come up with stuff since then, but every time I came back to this “saved draft”, the page sat blank, void of any words, mocking my brain for it’s lack of gratitude.

Well, I’ve decided that I am grateful for my family. Not the one I was born into, not the one I married into, but the one I created. My husband and I, and our beautiful children (and they are truly beautiful people inside and out). So… I think instead of telling you about our family and what makes us special or unique or “The GREATEST FAMILY EVER!” (cuz that’s not even true, sometimes we totally suck!)… I think instead of that, I’ll leave you with a few simple photos. An evolution of our family, as it is. I don’t know why, but I don’t think I considered us a “family” until my son was born and there are hardly any photos of just the three of us before he entered our lives. So most of these shots are over the last two years. The military does a lot of things to and for families, but one of the biggest things is that it has given us the chance to take more family photos than before. So, I give you:

Evolution of the Family “Noba”

This was the day my husband swore in, taking his Oath of Enlistment and leaving us for Basic Training that night. Up until then, we had never been apart for more than a few days. Sissy was about 4.5 and Little Brother turned one a month later.

This was the day my husband swore in, taking his Oath of Enlistment and leaving us for Basic Training that night. Up until then, we had never been apart for more than a few days. Sissy was about 4.5 and Little Brother turned one a month later.

This was my husband's Basic Training graduation. So much had changed. By this point, Sissy had a tentative diagnosis of autism, Little Brother had clearly put on some weight and we'd all had a hair cut. We got to spend less than a day with my husband during that trip and it wasn't fair and it was chaos and stress, but another soldiers mother took this photo for us, the only one we have from either his BCT grad or OCS grad :)

This was my husband’s Basic Training graduation. So much had changed. By this point, Sissy had a tentative diagnosis of autism, Little Brother had clearly put on some weight and we’d all had a hair cut. We got to spend less than a day with my husband during that trip and it wasn’t fair and it was chaos and stress, but another soldiers mother took this photo for us, the only one we have from either his BCT grad or OCS grad 🙂

Just ahead some time, Easter 2012. My aunt is a photographer and we spent Easter with her and my young cousin (not much older than Sissy). Sis is in first grade and Little Brother was about to turn three the following summer. This was a quick trip, not more than a few days, but it was a good one and an important one.

Just ahead some time, Easter 2012. My aunt is a photographer and we spent Easter with her and my young cousin (not much older than Sissy). Sis is in first grade and Little Brother was about to turn three the following summer. This was a quick trip, not more than a few days, but it was a good one and an important one. Photo Copyright 2012, Lynne Hough Photography



Block Leave 2012: taken at a rest stop near the Colorado River. Yes, we drove from TN to CA and back again, taking two different routes so that we would see more of the country. The kids had a blast.

Block Leave 2012: taken at a rest stop near the Colorado River. Yes, we drove from TN to CA and back again, taking two different routes so that we would see more of the country. The kids had a blast.

My own personal "D-Day". Despite the smiling faces, this was the day my husband deployed. This was the last time I saw him, the last time I touched him, the first time we said "See ya soon"... My big girl in second grade at six years old, I couldn't be more proud. Little Brother being ornery as ever, was barely three.

My own personal “D-Day”. Despite the smiling faces, this was the day my husband deployed. This was the last time I saw him, the last time I touched him, the first time we said “See ya soon”… My big girl in second grade at six years old, I couldn’t be more proud. Little Brother being ornery as ever, was barely three.

Thankful Thursday: January 24th Edition

This is going to seem odd, but I am thankful for this deployment.

I want to be clear. I am not thankful that my husband is in a foreign land. I am not thankful that there is a chance he may never come home to us. I am not thankful for the separation, the issues in communication, or the lack of someone to hold my hand at the end of the day.

I AM thankful for having a simplified way of finding the people who really care about me. I AM thankful for this opportunity to be independent and really discover who I am and the things that I like to do. I AM thankful for the chance to show people who think I can’t do it, that I really can.

You see, there are a lot of people in my life who claim that they love me. They say as much. They claim to support me, to have faith in me, to be there for me when I need them. These are the same people who have not called once in the past five months to ask how I’m doing. They don’t send emails to let me know they are thinking of me. They don’t post on my Facebook page to tell me they are praying for my family while my husband is gone. These are the people I heard from via text message occasionally, but only in the context of “What do the kids want for Christmas?” or “Does Sissy have one of these, I was gonna buy it for her birthday.” I’m glad that these people have taken to showing at least a minimal interest in my children, but no regard is shown for me. One person in particular, called to ask about the kids Christmas presents and then went on and on about a gift they bought for another family member’s birthday. This same person did not so much as send me a birthday card last month. Though I did get a random comment on a Facebook post that someone else had posted to my wall.

These same people, who have chosen to ignore me the past five months, have also, in the past, expressed little comfort in my ability to care for myself and my children in my husband’s absence. They don’t believe I can do it. They don’t believe in me. They have no faith. Well, I am thankful because in the past five months, I have proven them wrong. I don’t have to even believe in myself to do it either. There are two children, two tiny little hearts, quietly sleeping in the next room. And THEY believe in me. They know I can do it. They know I will take care of them and that I can fix anything, and that what I can’t do on my own, we have Google to ask for help. They’ve seen me build shelves, and purse hangers, and fix the car. They know when I need comfort and they tell me the words that I tell them when they are sad.

I can do this. And this deployment has shown me that. It is certainly NOT easy. If given the choice, my husband would have come home months ago, but part of me is glad for this time apart. Not only am I getting the opportunity to prove everyone wrong, but I am proving myself wrong. Months ago, I didn’t think I would make it this far. Four months from now, my husband will come home to us. I will hug him and forget about all the hardships I’ve had to deal with alone these long months. I will read these blogs and know that the helplessness was short lived and that peace comes in the morning.

I am independent.
I am fierce.
I am getting stronger every day.
I will prove them wrong.
I can do this.

I am thankful for this deployment because I am more me now than I was before. I am stronger, more independent, and fiercely loyal. I know who is behind me and who stepped out of my life when I needed them the most. For that, I am thankful.

Thankful Thursday: Jan 17, 2013

Letter to a Deployed Husband, Part Two:


My Dearest Soldier,


That’s the number of days since the last time you held me in your arms.

That’s the number of days until the next time you will hold me again.

That’s the number of days since the last time I held you close and kissed you fiercely.

That’s the number of days until I will kiss you once again.


The number of days since the kids said “See you soon”.

The number of days until the kids say “Hello”.

The number of days since I drove home in the dark through tears.

The number of days until I drive home with you by my side, through more tears.


The number of days since I made a bad joke and we both laughed hard.

The number of days until the laughter returns.

The number of days since the last time I looked into your eyes and told you “I love you”.

The number of days until I can whisper those sweet words to you again.


It is so hard to believe that we have made it this far without you. It’s still difficult day to day. It doesn’t get easier to go on without you, just easier to find acceptable distractions. We are halfway there, my love. You are halfway home.

My darling husband, my best friend, you are very loved and very missed.

Just keep breathing and we’ll see you soon, my love.

Forever Yours, Forever Waiting.


Today, I am thankful for the days. The days that have passed. The days still to come. I have learned a lot about myself so far. I have learned a lot about my husband. There is much strength, much love and much patience that has passed. There is much more strength, much more love, and much more patience to be had. We are halfway there. 135 days since I last saw, touched, smelled my husband. 135 until I can do so again.

My husband is halfway home.

29 Things: #26

26. Buy “embarrassing” lingerie and actually wear it. Wear it again in front of the husband. (There will be no pictures on the wearing, there may be pictures of the buying. FYI, almost all lingerie is embarrassing, we really only wear it because we think our husband’s will like it.)

Well folks, I completed the first part without hesitation. I bought “embarrassing” lingerie.

Just an FYI, if you open a package from a lingerie company, pull an article from the bag and the first thing that pops into your mind is “Well THAT wasn’t part of the description!?!” the “embarrassing” lingerie just because unwearable.

I also would love to know why Frederick’s of Hollywood sends their items in what looks like a giant condom wrapper. Seriously?! Take a look at the photo, if you don’t know what a condom is, I suggest you go talk to an adult. If you are an adult, talk to a doctor. With a proper sized dowel, you could make a giant lollipop out of this.

I was fully expecting a box not this.

I was fully expecting a box not this.

I don’t really understand the fascination with skimpy underwear and bras that effectively aren’t bras. I have never understood what makes these items “sexy”. When most men agree that a girl who leaves “a little to the imagination” is more sexy than a girl who is flaunting her “goodies”, I can’t wrap my head around these “goodie flaunting” under garments that leave NOTHING to the imagination and often show WAY more than any normal woman is comfortable showing.

The wearing it part is gonna take a lot more courage. I did try on a few pieces and OH MY GOSH, I don’t see how that is supposed to be flattering at all! But a promise is a promise. I will do everything I can to make it work and to be confident and sexy in these oh so embarrassing items when my husband gets back.

Just taking one for the team on this I guess. But man, does he owe me big lol

For the rest of the list and an awesome Doctor Who inspired birthday cake, click here.

(Side Note: I am deliberately leaving out a link to the FOH website. There are too many people out there who struggle with lust and emotional adultery for me to say “Find it here!” with a brightly colored hyperlink. If you’re going to do that, you’re going to do it without my help.)

Thankful Thursday: Jan 3rd Edition

So these “Grateful” posts were supposed to be on Friday, but after several lengthy battles between me and a thesaurus the only synonym for “grateful” that starts with an ‘F’ is “favorable” and that just didn’t fit the ton of what these posts are supposed to be about. So two posts late, I’m posting these first two on Saturday and moving the rest of them to Thursdays.

On to the show:

My husband recently dedicated this song to me. I miss my husband dearly. He’s nearly halfway home and not a day goes by that I don’t wish he could come home one day sooner. I’m not missing my “better half” as that would imply we are not whole people on our own. This is not the case. I am simply without my best friend. The man, no, the only person who has been there through some of my darker moments. The one who lifted me up when I needed it. He hasn’t always been the perfect husband, or even the best husband. I have been far from the perfect wife. We have each, over the years, had our moments of being less than lovable. Less than worthy to be loved by the other.

I wouldn’t say that joining the Army has been detrimental to our marriage, but it has changed the way we interact with each other. Everything, for a long time, seemed very superficial. We don’t want to hurt the other or cause problems between us so we just skim the surface. We put band-aids on flesh wounds and patch bullet holes with maxi pads, but haven’t really been connecting.

Being apart for so long has changed us both. I can only hope these changes are for the better. I know that I am a different person now than when my husband left us for the war four and a half months ago. I know that he is changing on a daily basis and this song is proof. In the week since he posted this song to my Facebook page, I have listened to it nearly every day. It is a way to help me connect with the man my heart longs to see, the one my arms long to hold, the one my lips want to kiss.

Through this separation, my husband has learned the value of real quality time and for that I am grateful. Every day he has done something more to impress me. To court me, as it were. From half a world away, my husband is wooing me like I haven’t been wooed in years. It’s the beginning all over again. I go into detail about how I met my husband here. Something I haven’t talked about is how he proposed to me. I am thankful for the man that he was, the man that he is, and the man that he wants to be. With that, I think I’ll live in the past for a moment, one of the best moments of my life:

July 19th, 2005: My mother-in-law’s birthday. I packed my hot pink suitcase, stacked my teddy bear and my photo album on top and knocked on my mother’s bedroom door. In a little town in Florida, I had given her a migraine and she wouldn’t even come to the door to say goodbye to me. She stayed in bed. I walked out the door.  My aunt, my mother’s younger sister, and a group of my friends (I love that they were so supportive) drove me to the bank to get some cash and then off to the airport I went. I was wearing a black and white hat with a slightly wide brim. Clutching my teddy bear to my chest, I said my goodbyes at the curb and walked into the airport. I forgot my album. Too late now, my sister had it last time I heard anything about it.

My suitcase was 62lbs, why I remember this, I don’t know. I remember feeling like a child, so scared and so alone. Still clutching my teddy bear and my neon green carry-on bag, the man/boy behind the counter must have thought I was a child. He put the “over-weight” sticker on my suitcase and let me go to security without paying the extra fees. I’m very petite and was even more so then, I can see where I would have looked like a child, crying and clutching my teddy bear, you certainly wouldn’t have guessed that I was nineteen years old and pregnant.

I don’t remember security, I don’t remember the flight at all. It was nonstop, I remember that because I was afraid to change flights. I wasn’t in a state emotionally where I could have handled that. The first thing that I remember after leaving the check-in counter at the airport in Tampa, is standing at the top of the escalator at the airport in Los Angeles. Looking down, I saw him standing at the bottom holding a stuffed animal. Coming down the escalator, I imagine the look on his face was a mirror of my own, stupid goofy.

I remember him putting his arms around me and replacing my teddy bear with this monkey he had. It was wearing saddle shoes, a top hat and tuxedo and held a heart shaped pillow that read, “I love you”. “It’s the closest thing they had to a Wookie” I remember him saying though I can’t remember when. “Look behind the heart” read a tiny card still attached to it’s wrist today, behind the pillow was a pocket the held a pair of delicate Tinker Bell shaped earrings and matching necklace (Side note, I’m still afraid to wear this set because it’s so delicate that I don’t want it to break). Along with the jewelry, was a note instructing me to squeeze the wrist of the little monkey I now held tightly.

“Will you marry me?”

That’s what it said once I’d pressed the correct wrist and held it closer to my ear so I could actually hear it. My father in law was filming this whole encounter and had asked people to stand back in anticipation of my husband getting down on his knee to ask for my hand. Something that I know bugged him to no end because my husband never did. That’s right, I got no “on the knee in the middle of the airport baggage claim” proposal. I got something so much better. I was held in the arms of the man who would comfort me through so many hurts during one of the most intimate moments we could possibly have in public.

He held me close, listened to the sound of his own voice coming from a stuffed doll and became mine forever. I will always be grateful for everything he does for our marriage and our family, but all of that started with a set of choices. He took a leap and asked for my heart and I handed it over without a second thought. And for the rest of our lives, I will be able to replay his proposal whenever I want.

And I do…

This is "Bamir", named for the Wookie character my husband used when we met while playing SWG (Star Wars Galaxies)

This is “Bamir”, named for the Wookie character my husband used when we met while playing SWG (Star Wars Galaxies)