I started off 2012 with a bang, I managed to destroy my laptop and we were preparing for deployment #2. I think getting ready for deployment is nearly as bad as the deployment itself. You are stuck in this in-between stage, like you are wanting to make the most of your time together but you are also getting mentally ready for them to leave. You get to this point where you can't prepare anymore so you are just ready for the damn deployment to start, like ripping a bandaid off quickly.
Since this deployment was so close to deployment #1, we never were able to get settled in. Hubs and I were still dealing with reintegration issues which turned into a huge fight in January. Thankfully a 30 day underway gave us time to sort it out and get excited about our first family vacation: Disney World!
They aren't kidding when they say its the happiest place on Earth. We had a great time as a family, the deployment was the furthest thing from our minds. We enjoyed Disney World so much, we are going back in Spring 2013!
Then I spent the next few months dealing with deployment and the drama related to it. The deployment curse kicked in right away: I managed to strain my right quadricep muscle to the point that I was on crutches (for the first time in my life!) for 2 weeks. I made a visit to my Grandmother in North Carolina. I bought the Country MegaTicket to see all the country concerts in town during the summer. I made a visit to my parents in Louisiana, just in time to celebrate my niece's 2nd birthday and attend Bayou Country Superfest.
I made a side trip to Texas to visit my mother & father-in-law during my visit to Louisiana. Had I known then what I know now....because when we left on May 20th we didn't realize that would be the last time we would see Bob.
You ever have those moments in your life that you remember everything exactly? That is what June 20th will always be for me. The following 2 days were a blur until Hubs was able to come home for emergency leave. What do you say to your husband when you haven't seen them for 3 months and they have just lost their father? Its tough because you want to be happy they are home but the reason they are home is just so heartbreaking that it sucks all the happiness out of it. I can pinpoint this experience as the #1 hardest event I've experienced so far in my life. I think losing a parent is one of the worst things anyone goes through in their lives.
Shortly after sending Hubs back on deployment, life just kept throwing curve balls my way. In July, I made my first solo road trip with Little Miss to Louisiana. I also got in my first car accident in my less-than-a-year-old car! Some jerk rear ended me on the interstate, at least it wasn't worse. The last 2 days of that trip were eventful: My brother and his girlfriend got into some trouble and their daughter was placed in the custody DCS. I had 3 days to drive from Louisiana to Massachusetts in order to make the custody hearing. I made the drive from Louisiana to Virginia in 2 days and after dropping Little Miss off with a friend, I continued onward. I wasn't even 2 hours from home when a car in front of me on the interstate decided to run over a piece of tire retread, causing it to crash into my windshield. I was going about 7omph when it hit me.
Luckily, my super-hero friend packed up my kid (and hers too) and came to my rescue. I was able to have my car towed to a nearby shop to be repaired while I went out of town. I think someone up there was watching out for me because having a friend with me for that long drive and for the stressful situation was a lifesaver. So we made the trip from Virginia to Massachusetts with 2 toddlers in tow, stayed for 2 nights, then made the trip back. I have never been in a court room before, hell I haven't ever gotten a speeding ticket! I am fairly certain I maintained a cool exterior, but I was having chest pains the entire day from anxiety. As much as I love my brother and as many times as he has been in trouble in his life, I have fortunately not been around to see him arrested in court. This time I wasn't so lucky. Even though I knew he messed up, having his belongings handed over to me and seeing him in the cop car was hard. Seeing what drugs can do to people, its crazy. I pray that my niece never remembers any of this and I pray that my brother and his girlfriend clean up their lives and maintain a sober life. This easily was the second hardest situation I have ever faced.
So for the record, the two hardest events in my life happened 2 months apart during a deployment. I know you have heard of the expression about raining and pouring, but the sun has to eventually shine right?
Okay so we are up to September-ish now. I ran my first race, a half-marathon at that! Yah, I am crazy. Actually I am only half-crazy since it was a half-marathon, hehehe. It was awesome and now I am hooked on running. I ran with one of my amazing friends that helped me through alot this deployment too. She helped me out ALOT when I hurt my leg in April and she answered all of my silly questions about running. I finished the race in 2:35:42. Considering all of my distractions during my training, I was very pleased with the results!
I did lots of crafting and lots of fun stuff with Little Miss. I went to more concerts and started preparing for homecoming. I ran a 10k at the end of October and made excellent time despite Hurricane Sandy, 57:51!
Then came my favorite moment of 2012: Homecoming! Getting Hubs back was more than just homecoming, he is now home for good. No more deployments for the rest of his contract!
*of course that is if a world war or some other massive catastrophe doesn't happen *.
This year have learned alot. I have grown even more. I would like to think that I have become a better mother, wife, daughter, and friend. My skin has become a little bit thicker and I am wasting less time on people that don't deserve it, while spending more time on people that do. I am taking better care of my body than ever, minus the last week of Christmas feasting.
While 2012 was a tough year, it was a year full of new experiences and new lessons learned. I started crafting alot more, I am most proud of my Pillowcase Mattresses! Maybe in 2013 I will be brave enough to start selling them. I have become an infinitely better cook, even Hubs agrees. He doesn't even realize that he's eating healthier food! I also was blessed enough to watch my daughter grow a year older. Every day I thank God that I get to be her mother. Despite going through months of separation, I am happy to report that my marriage is stronger than ever. We've gotten to this happy place that I never thought was possible. I could go on and on but I'm not all about the mushy blog posts. So even though 2012 had its challenges, I also came away with lots of positives!
As tough as 2012 was for me, it would be beyond wrong for me to say it was harder than anyone elses. Yes, I did go through quite a bit but unfortunately there is always someone out there that has it worse. I have few friends in particular this applies to, one especially. She has been through more in a year than any one person should have to endure in a lifetime and has managed to survive it all with a tremendous amount of grace and maturity. She is an amazing role model for not only her children, but to everyone around her. I hope 2013 is an amazing year for her!
Like last year, I won't be making any "resolutions" for 2013 but there are lots of things I hope to accomplish. I would like to run more races. There is a 14k in February that I am currently training for. In March they have another big race, but we will be in Disney World so that run will have to wait until 2014! I want to also keep getting stronger and looking lean. I want start doing more preschool activities with Little Miss and teaching her more about music. Apparently Hubs wants me to teach him piano basics too. I want to visit my family in Wisconsin this summer! Its been way too long since I've seen everyone up there. This is also our last full year in the Navy, we start our "never again" days in April.
The biggest thing I am hoping for in 2013: We want to add onto our family! I want so much for Little Miss to have someone to grow up with, someone to have once Hubs & I are no longer able to be around. We have been trying for a few cycles now, but until it happens Hubs and I will just have to settle for having fun trying :)
Here's to 2013 and hoping its better than 2012!