The past 16 months have probably been some of the worst for me. I haven't felt such sadness, despair and anger in a really long time. Sure, I've had great days. Great weeks and an occasional great month but, overall, I'd rather forget most of what came to be.
That last comment, though, "I'd rather forget most of what came to be," is a hard thought to swallow. Even for me. Ruby is 16 months old. And while its not her fault or doing that I came to such a depressing state of mind, its the only thing I know from her short little life.
Between the birth, the breast feeding, the deployment, the isolation, traveling alone, the criticism from people I love....
From nursing children back to health alone (asthma, upper respiratory yucks, food intolerances, auto immune diseases, stomach bugs and a round of the flu--times 3), homeschooling, church participating and extra curricular chauffer...
From deployment homecomings, "vacationing", underway managing, Are-we-staying-in-or-getting-out? tug-of-waring, moving, setting up house and routine, holidaying....
I'm ready for this period of time to be over. I'm done moaning, groaning and crying about this chapter of my life. I'm done feeling the total, crushing guilt I now carry for resenting my baby for most of her first year. I'm done trying to hold myself together for the general public's viewing pleasure.
At the close of 2013, I found myself telling Jeremy he's going to come home one day and find a note saying the girls and I have gone to set up home at a stable location... Call me when he retires.
Does that mean I want to leave my husband? Absolutely not.
But things were not working for us. For this family.
It's hard to include him in our lives when he's never home. He works on the boat, lives on the boat, eats, breathes and sleeps the boat. He may come home most nights, but I'm convinced it was only to pick up a change of clothes and catch a few hours of sleep to prove he still has a spot in our family. Its hard not to include him in our lives when he keeps showing up at the most inopportune times.
The ball dropped in Times Square, 2014 began as I lay alone in my bed, Jeremy on duty. I closed my eyes and fell deep into sleep. I'm not sure what's happened, but this last week has been a blissful dream.
My girls are happy, healthy and growing in mind, body and spirit. My love and devotion for them couldn't be any stronger. And while Jer still comes home at the most odd schedule, somehow its not grating on my last nerve.
I love my family. Even when I, myself, am nothing more than a giant thunder cloud hanging over our family, casting the darkest of shadows, I love them. And I want a life with them for as long as the good Lord allows.
So here's to 2014. May this new light in my eyes last beyond this past week and into this next year. And may my family know this light shows for them, because of them.
Jeremy included. Awful work schedule and all.