Friday, December 19, 2008

Baby, it's cold outside!

Well time is drawing nearer for my big trek across the country over the holidays!

Tuesday early morning I will leave for Tennessee and then Sgt. and I will board a plane the next day for Cold Northern State! I'm starting to get anxious, as I do before most trips. I am so excited, but of course there's all the stuff that has to get done between now and then! Trust me, there's a lot of it, I know... I have been making the list! One thing on the list is

  • Buy shoes you can wear in the snow!

You see.... I love shoes but I have never really had to buy a pair of boots that are purposeful... adorable, yes but purposeful... no. 'Round here in Texas Y'all... weather is unpredictable this time of year, but even if the unspeakable happens (Read: Snow flurries) it usually doesn't last long and there is really no reason to change shoes. Of course.... last Tuesday, the unspeakable DID happen, and although I didn't need to change shoes for the 30 min. snow shower (ok ok... dusting...) it DID remind me that - "HELLOOOO you are going near Canada, that white stuff you never see, IS THERE... what the hell are you planning on wearing missy?!" - yes, I really do think these things to myself.

So, off to shoe shopping I'm going (soon), - This is the perfect excuse to buy some new boots! This is completely necessary and while I don't want to spend the money, I will sacrifice for the greater good. Although Sgt. would go to great lengths to love me and take care of me.... dealing with frostbite or pneumonia is not exactly a theory I want to test.

Back to the snow though... what exactly does a Texas snow down here in the hill country look like, you ask? Now, before I post these pictures.... don't make fun. Don't make fun of ME anyway... this was definitely picture worthy... we don't see it often! And I promise, I saw actual flakes of snow... not sleet, but the dusty white stuff. Ok, I'm done making excuses..

(The hood of my car after the "storm")

And this is what I'm traveling to:

Yes, I think new boots are definitely in order. And maybe more new sweaters... God, I'm going to FREEZE! Of course, there is always the added bonus of extra hugs and cuddling when one is cold, maybe this isn't such a bad thing after all ;)!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Light bulbs, and other bright things :)

I haven't posted in a while... and there's a very good reason.

First reason is because (and I'm giving you the WAY simple and short version because I could ramble forever if I wanted to) blogging for me is an outlet, sort of a way to vent and get things off my chest (obviously right) - well Sgt. and I were talking last week and I had a light bulb moment that my dear, sweet, wonderful boyfriend brought up. I've been asking him to communicate better with me, but I wasn't really making the effort to communicate with him. Instead I would blog about it. I would blog about it before even mentioning to him I was feeling a certain way. Light bulb! And he was absolutely right.... how unfair of me to ask, and how unfair that he would have to come to my blog to figure out what was going on with me. I love him, he's my best friend, and I should trust him enough to tell him the good AND the bad.... it's never a problem when he's here, but when he's away there is a distance felt and it makes it harder to bring those things up. However, I've been trying, because the thing is, I WANT him to know that stuff... all of it, he's always the person I want to tell things to, even when they're bad. Often times I mention I posted a blog just so he'll read it and know what's up.... chicken, I know. But I'm working on doing better now!

I'm sorry honey, that I wasn't thinking about how it might come across. Thank you for being patient with me, and thank you for giving me, or being my outlet in whatever capacity I need. I love you!

The only down side to this is that once I talk to him about it (whatever it is, good or bad) I suddenly don't feel the need to type it all out to get it off my chest! I still WANT to... I love my blog, so just bear with me as I don't hope to jump to my blog first every time something happens in my life, I'm now focusing on jumping to the phone :).

Things between us are going good! A week or so ago we had a really good talk about the distance. About being apart. On my end of things, as I've blogged before, I just feel so far away from him when we're at our respective homes. The connection I feel between us, that feeling of awe while just being near him... the absolute and perfect love I feel from him, how great we work together when actually together is just slightly turned on its side when we're apart. It doesn't disappear, and glimpses of it show up from time to time, but it's a different dynamic. As we both talked about this and were honest with how we felt it became very apparent to me that really neither of us were wrong, and both of us felt the same way - we just felt it IN different ways. Sgt. is very level headed and it's a great quality when trying to talk through something together. I tend to react very emotional based... but Sgt. can think through it, he can keep me on track... which is what I need. We agreed that the distance made communicating harder.... if 85% of communication is non-verbal, then that is a great indicator of why we feel the way we feel when we're apart. 85% of our communication, how we feel loved just by being in the same room together, how we don't have to fill silence, we can just BE together, is already gone by logistics. LIGHT BULB. It doesn't mean we found the solution... it just makes more sense now.

Something I realized we can do (and I believe he realized, though I won't speak for him) is handle each other how they are, not how we are. I am a very "emotional" person - though not a big crier, I generally feel most emotions on a big scale. Something good happens "I'm SO EXCITED!" Something bad happens "I'm miserable". Sgt. is just not like this. I love him, but his reactions are much more subdued, which is ok, I just never thought of it like this before (can you tell I'M SO EXCITED about this new revelation :) ). Just because he doesn't react with pain and heartache at our separation, doesn't mean he doesn't miss me, it doesn't mean he doesn't love me, and it doesn't mean there is something wrong. Conversely, just because I feel very disconnected when we're apart, and miss him some days so much it consumes most of my thoughts, because I ask so many questions about his day in an attempt to feel close to him, it doesn't mean that I can't handle it or that I'm literally suffering. It doesn't mean I'm trying to stifle his independence or control his time... it just means I miss you, and I love you. His reaction is ok, because that's how he is, and I LOVE who he is.... my reaction is ok because it's who I am, and Sgt. loves who I am. Part of the reason we make each other so happy is because there is a part of the other person we don't have in ourselves. Sort of like a puzzle piece that fits together.

Is this making any sense? It does to me.

So yeah, it was a wonderful conversation!! I have missed him a lot these past couple of days in the anticipation of seeing him next week. I can see us growing and learning more about each other, even that I figured we'd already found out. I am gaining more faith in his love for me... he never walks out on a conversation, he never intends to come across and mean or hurtful, and he's doing better at being patient with me as I hope I am with him. This whole reintegration thing is an interesting phenomenon, but if nothing else it has taught me that no matter what we may go through, neither of us has ever wanted to walk away from it and that's a pretty reassuring feeling :).

-- ok, on to less serious topics of discussion --

This week should be busy busy busy! I'm working all week until after 11pm but Friday starts the holiday fun! Friday I'll have Christmas with my family and Saturday I'm hoping to volunteer at the USO with Linds before driving down to Corpus for Christmas with my moms side of the family! Sunday is a recoup day and tie up loose ends day, then Monday I have work and will head to San Antonio Monday night! My flight leaves bright and early Tuesday and by 10am I will be warm and cozy in the arms of my man! After that - it's Cold Northern City for 5 days and back to the south where we will enjoy some time together. Can't wait!

Hope everyone is doing fabulous! I'm off to drop off some Christmas cards, (I know... I'm SO LATE) and run errands over lunch! Adios!

P.S. Pictures of a Texas Snow are coming your way next post!

Monday, December 8, 2008

The soldiers' night before Christmas

*For those of you who are elementary teachers and mommies this is an actual children's book, written by Trish Holland and Christine Ford, illustrated by John Manders*

'Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the base
Only sentries were stirring - they guarded the place.

At the foot of each bunk sat a helmet and boot
For the Santa of Soldiers to fill up with loot.
The soldiers were sleeping and snoring away

As they dreamed of "back home" on good Christmas day.
One snoozed with his rifle - he seemed so content.
I slept with the letters my family had sent

When outside the tent there arose such a clatter.
I sprang from my rack to see what was the matter.

Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Poked out my head, and yelled, "What was that crash?"

When what to my thrill and relief should appear,
But one of our Blackhawks to give the all clear.
More rattles and rumbles! I heard a deep Whine!

Then up drove eight Humvees, a jeep close behind...
Each vehicle painted a bright Christmas green,
With more lights and gold tinsel than I'd ever seen.

The convoy commander leaped down and he paused.
I knew then and there it was Sergeant McClaus!
More rapid than rockets, his drivers they came
When he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name:

"Now, Cohen! Mendoza! Woslowski! McCord!
Now, Li! Watts! Donetti! And Specialist Ford!"

"Go fill up my sea bags with gifts large and small!
Now Dash away! Dash away! Dash away, all!"
In the blink of an eye, to their trucks the troops darted.
The engines did flutter, they sputtered, then started.

The armored moved out - it was "Duty or bust."
McClaus disappeared in all of the dust!

As I drew in my head and was turning around,
Through the tent flap the sergeant came in with a bound.
He was dressed all in camo and looked quite a sight
With a Santa hat added for this special night.

His eyes - sharp as lasers! He stood six feet six.
His nose was quite crooked, his jaw hard as bricks!
A stub of cigar he held clamped in his teeth,
And the smoke, it encircled his head like a wreath.

A young driver walked in with a seabag in tow.
McClaus took the bag, told the driver to go.
Then the sarge went to work. And his mission today?
Bring Christmas from home to the troops far away!

Tasty gifts from old friends in the helmets he laid.
There were candies, and cookies, and cakes, all homemade.
Many parents sent phone cards so soldiers could hear
Treasured voices and laughter of those they held dear.

Loving husbands and wives had mailed photos galore
Of weddings and birthdays and first steps and more.
And for each soldier's boot, like a warm, happy hug,
There was art from the children at home sweet and snug.

As he finished the job - did I see a twinkle?
Was that a small smile or instead just a wrinkle?
To the top of his brow he raised up his hand
And gave a salute that made me feel grand.

I gasped in surprise when, his face all aglow,
He gave a huge grin and a big HO! HO! HO!

HO! HO! HO! from the barracks and then from the base.
HO! HO! HO! as the convoy sped up into space.
As the camp radar lost him, I heard this faint call:

"Happy Christmas brave soldiers! May peace come to all!"

Friday, December 5, 2008

The Grinch

The Grinch: That's what it's all about, isn't it? That's what it's always been about. Gifts, gifts... gifts, gifts, gifts, gifts, gifts. You wanna know what happens to your gifts? They all come to me. In your garbage. You see what I'm saying? In your garbage. I could hang myself with all the bad Christmas neckties I found at the dump. And the avarice... The avarice never ends! "I want golf clubs. I want diamonds. I want a pony so I can ride it twice, get bored and sell it to make glue." Look, I don't wanna make waves, but this whole Christmas season is stupid, stupid, stupid! (exerpt from Dr. Seusses How The Grinch Stole Christmas, Directed by Ron Howard)

It never occurred to me how true the story of The Grinch could possibly be. However, move a few of those words around and leave some EXACTLY how they are and you have the man I love right there, although much less green and hairy. At first when the whole talk of the holiday season came around, I thought that he just didn't like the holidays because he hadn't really had many good ones these last few years. Always deployed or what have you... I figured it to be nothing more than a case of the "aiming lows" and that a great Christmas would turn his attitude a bit, but the more we talk about it, the more it becomes apparent that Sgt. really, honestly, HATES Christmas. Loathes it. Much like Dr. Suesses Grinch.

Last night while on the phone he snapped at me because we were on the topic of what to get his family for Christmas, and he said something like "look, babe, I REALLY don't want to talk about Christmas right now" and so we tried to change the subject. This morning we talked for a little bit and headed back to the Christmas subject again.

You see... I have been trying to think of a great gift to get him. Not because I feel obligated. Not because he only asks for expensive or outrageous things. Not because I'm trying to measure up to him flying us to Vermont for Christmas... I've been searching because I LOVE giving gifts to show appreciation and love. I love getting something for someone that I know when they open it will get a huge smile on their face and get to do something they really want to do or have something they've always wanted to have. It's not about the GIFT, it's about how I feel knowing they feel special. It's about being able to do something for someone I love. I've been trying to score him tickets to see the Titans play at home. True Tennessee fan through and through, when I thought of the idea I couldn't believe it hadn't occurred to me before! I was so excited, because I knew he would love it. Well, I was outbid for the tickets I wanted and so the idea came and went today.... but I was still happy because I knew I was able to think of something he'd really like, so surely I could figure out another idea. When we talked about it, (yeah, I spilled the beans about what I really wanted to get him) he was appreciative of the thought... but was also a little upset. We had talked about a spending limit for Christmas gifts for each other this year. We're both a little tight on money and with lots of family to go around, we decided to not go extravagant on each other. I remember the conversation, but I don't remember the limit (I was informed today it was around 50 dollars.... ) and it just upset him.

I tried to explain, it's NOT about the money, or the gift, which he agreed to, but in his eyes, because it's not about the gift or the money, whats the point in getting one, and in mine... because it's not about the gift or the money, it's about the feeling and appreciation I want to show, I should be able to get him whatever I want. I don't want anything in return for it, I don't expect it to be matched... I want to make him happy, I want him to feel loved, I want to be able to do something nice for HIM for a change. Sgt. is by no stretch of the imagination stingy... he's incredibly giving, particularly with every day type of things and ideas. His big problem with it, is it feels like such an obligation. Everything about Christmas is an obligation to him. He told me yesterday "I really just hate Christmas" and it actually stung.

He's not trying to be mean or stifle how I feel about the holiday... but when we talked about it today - I agreed with him - the commercial side of Christmas is ridiculous, but that's not why I love Christmas. I tried to explain to him, I love Christmas because it's a time to reflect on the year, a time to appreciate your loved ones, a time to be thankful for the birth of Christ and what that means for us... being appreciative of that blessing so that we are able to be blessed abundantly. "Well that's exactly why I hate this freaking holiday baby!" HUH? - I gave him a moment to explain, and his point was... he feels like you should always be thankful for that (agreed) that you should always appreciate your family (agreed) that you should always be gracious and be able to give someone a gift just because you love them, not because it's a holiday and it's expected. And while all of that is a great argument, I still love the fact that everyone, if only for a short while, is a little more appreciative, and a little more thoughtful this time of year.

Granted.... he was actually angry so some of his wording may be off. I don't think it's any different from mine... but I think that's where we butt heads... he sees them as very different. He is in NO WAY judging me or saying I'm selfish or only a Christian for Christmas... not at all, he knows better anyway... but his point is that, that's what the holiday has become and the entire day just feels like a huge obligation.

I asked him if he could do Christmas his way how he would do it, and he said he would have the day off, and spend time at church with loved ones... (I'm actually throwing in the loved ones part because I THINK that's what he said... the day off and church were definite's though) - so I told him, lets just do that. He said we wouldn't be able to this year because of plans already made.

I love Christmas, I love love love love the entire holiday season, and it breaks my heart that he hates it so much. It doesn't make me mad, and I never feel like he's attacking me about my Christmas passion, it just makes me sad that it's not something we can share. It's not about the gifts, or how much we spend on them... I would love Christmas just as much if we got up in an undecorated house, went to church, and spent the rest of the day lounging around because what matters most to me is that I'm with people I love and care about, and they know that's how I feel. I just wish there was a way I could figure out an idea where we could celebrate Christmas together in a way that would make him happy. Don't get me wrong, the decorations are a blast, and I love looking at lights, I like the music and am a stud at wrapping gifts, don't even get me started on cookie recipes... but that's all bells and whistles, and it's not what's most important.... I just wish there was a way we could meet in the middle on it.

Any ideas?

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Standing still

I feel like at the moment, that's what I'm doing. However, my mind is not exactly sure what to make of it. The initial reaction is "MOVE!" "WHY are you just STANDING here?!" but then somewhere deep down a faint voice says "just wait..." "take a deep breath" "stand still"

This standing still notion has infiltrated all the areas of my life. And like I said, it's not a bad thing, I'm not upset or hurt or angry about it... some days it stings, but mostly, it just is. Sort of like a deer caught in the headlights.... curious at first, not exactly sure what to make of it. Now I'm just trying to decide if, like the deer, I should bolt as fast as I can in one direction or sit still and risk the chance that it may be an oncoming truck... or it may just be lights reflecting from somewhere else. This deer analogy sucks, sorry.

First, lets start with work. Working two jobs currently, one which I love, and another that is just necessary and at best annoying. Neither are what I want to do with my life. I'm trying to get back to school, but The University of Texas (and yes, I'm using their name so you can all know that this stinks and the smell is coming from Austin - but I love my Texas - Hook 'Em!) won't give me my transcripts. In fairness, they won't give me my transcripts because I owe them some student loan money.... but I can't return to school anywhere without that baby. Not no way, not no how. Tried. I am working on paying it off but it's a slowwwww process. So I can't go get my teaching degree, which is the ultimate goal. I've been looking into some teacher assistant (para-educator, educational assistant... whatever you want to call it) positions in the local school district (and in a few others in San Antonio and *cough* Tennessee *cough*), since it would at least put me in that direction . There are a couple available and I fit all the criteria, just have to take the para-pro test which coincidentally they are not holding in Texas again until March. So I would need to wait until August to go that route. 8 Months. All of my closest friends are starting their careers and lives and I sort of feel like I'm stuck at this place, wherever it is, not being allowed to move forward. *cue the smallest violin in the world playing me the saddest song*

Next we can of course move on to my relationship. Lets start with the GOOD news (and none of it is really bad but... I digress) - Our visit was amazing. It was nice to just BE together, not worry or fight about worrying and fighting. We goofed off, we drank wine with family, we played scrabble, we shot guns (I know... I know), we sat quietly together in the car with no need to ramble or fill the silence, just happy! I feel like he has really been making the effort, especially after our visit. It's much harder to pack all that into phone calls but when we got to spend time together I never once felt unappreciated, unloved, or that he would rather be somewhere else. He was attentive and loving and FUN... and I miss him.

However, there is a void when he's gone. The way I feel when we're together, is not how I always feel when we're apart. And I don't want this to sound hurtful, because it's not anything he's doing or not doing... it's just different. The way we are able to show the other person we love them when we're together is not feasible when we're apart. Sgt. is very loving in his actions, he can be a charmer at times with his words when he is particularly in the moment, but more than anything else, it's in the way he looks at me while I'm cooking, or the way he warms up the car before we go anywhere because I'm always cold, the same way he takes his jacket off and puts it around my shoulders when we go outside, in the way he makes me coffee in the morning or smiles at me when I've already gotten up and done it... as if I have super powers. It's how he kisses me on the forehead when he's done brushing his teeth and I'm still scrubbing away, it's in the way he squeezes my hand three times to tell me he loves me when we're in a crowded room, or in a quiet car. How he offers to help when I'm chopping or washing something, it's shows when he gets down off the couch during a movie to come sit on the floor next to me and fold our laundry, it's in him grabbing my hand and us sneaking away from the dinning room to take a nap on the couch together, it's in how he encourages me when we're playing a game and in how he is a good sport when I kick his ass at skeet shooting :) How he teaches me new things when I ask. None of those things are possible from 1000 miles away, and I am sick of being apart.

I know, lots more people have done it for much longer, but we've never been together. We've never had a point in our relationship where we didn't live at least an hour and a half from one another, and that was only for 3 months! The majority we've lived on different continents, and now, although closer, different states is not a whole lot more fun. Whining again, I know. I should be thankful, we get even just a weekend a month, and I am. Many women would kill for just that, I remember because I was there too. And I know, we're still growing and building up out of the funk we were in, and it takes time. After his four day visit, I thought to myself again, "yep, he's it, no worries" and I love having that feeling back, but I hate being afraid to talk about taking steps towards the next step. Does that make sense? We ARE growing, and getting better, and I know he misses me, but there is no talk of any moving anymore at all.... which is understandable, it just doesn't make it any easier. The logic and realistic side of me knows it all. Stand still. No planning or talk of progression, just... be. Which isn't bad, and probably what we need, but damn it... I'm impatient, and a worry wart... it's incredibly hard for me to just sit still.
My mind runs 1000 miles per hour and this vast unknown leaves WAY too much room for imagination and interpretation. I jump to the most asinine conclusions out of reaction and worry because I don't have any direction... I have no insight on plans or what he'd like to see happen. I could of course ask, which he would probably prefer than having to read it on my blog, but for one week I'd like to NOT be the one bringing up a serious topic of conversation. I mean can't I just give the guy a break. Can you imagine being in love with me all day? Tiring. *this is where Sgt. says "baby, your biggest fault, is allowing tomorrow to take away from today" and I say something like "I know..."*

A little over a year ago, I got really good at standing still. When I moved out here, in the boonies, in the middle of nowhere, with no one really around, Sgt. is deployed, I learned very quickly to just be quiet. To enjoy that. To sit outside and just appreciate the moment you had. Particularly a moment where I wasn't worried that he was on patrol, or cold, or hungry, or lonely. I learned to not be so worried about a plan... that life would happen one way or the other and it was better to just sit back and not fight it. Well, I had about a year of that... and now we're back to square one... where did all my new found sanity go?

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Weekend Re-Cap

This post will be short as I am about to head out and see if I can sneak any last min. weekend sales around town.. (general store anyone? Must be a small town thing)

Sgt. and I woke up bright and early this morning at 3:00 am... ok, I woke up at 3:00, turned our alarms off, and then got back in bed.... WE woke up at 3:30. Left the house by 4:45 and he's now safely back in Tennessee. As always, walking back into the apartment without him feels a little emptier.

His visit was amazing and I have lots of good stories, (and pictures!) but I'll have to post those in the next couple days. Short version is we had a great time and I think we are well on our way to getting back to where we were before, and dare I say... better? :)

I love him.

Hope everyone had a great weekend! I caught up on all the blogs (finally! Four days away is too long :) ) and am glad to hear that in spite of a couple of ER visits, and emotional moments, everyone was surrounded by love and good food in one way or another!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanksgiving Eve (long)

First things first - I think I'll stick with this background for a little bit... at least through the weekend because I don't think it's horrible, and I don't want to keep messing with it. What do you think? I'm sorry if it looks like pink just vomited all over my blog.... it's supposed to be some kind of chic Christmas background.... whatever, I'm not exactly someone who would consider themselves "Chic" so...


Sgt. gets in tonight!! I can't wait to see him, pick him up from the airport, actually have him here... there are some weeks and days I'm not sure how I made it over an entire year without seeing him, but then I guess a lot of things are born of necessity huh? I really am excited though... man, I miss him!

Never mind the fact that we were up until 2:30 this morning discussing and arguing. *sigh* - On all accounts we're doing better, we're trying hard at communicating more and giving each other the things we said we needed. Sometimes though I still feel off about things. Part of that has to do with the fact that lately (i.e. last couple months) I've grown into this very needy over analyzing person with him. Don't get me wrong, I'm not taking all the blame here (and not that there's anyone to blame) - but I was trying to explain to him last night that the affirmation, the "reassurance" if that's what you want to call it, is really important to me. It's not about him proving he loves me, I know he loves me, but when the only part of him I have is phone calls, it's important to me that we can still connect, I can still feel in love, over the phone. I think what's hard for him is that it wasn't always this way, I used to not feel like I needed to hear those things all the time. If I texted him that I couldn't wait to see him tomorrow and he said "me too" - that was great! Now, I see that and I'm thinking "okay.... you could seem a little more excited?"

It's not something I like, and I realize that it's causing frustrating among us both, but as I was trying to explain last night, I'm still a little gun shy. Every time we get in an argument, or anytime I feel him becoming distant (even when I KNOW it's only due to stress or a busy day) I get this concern that "Is this going to be the time?" "Is this the argument where we say 'maybe getting back together was a bad idea" - I told him all this. His response was something to the affect of "well that seems more like an insecurity in the relationship babe and I don't know what to tell you about that, that's not something I can fix for you" - and he's partly right, it is an insecurity about our relationship because for so long I thought "this is it, and no matter what, we'll be together" and then bam the whole "break" speech comes along so, I think being a little shy about the whole thing kinda comes with the territory. He's also right that he can't fix it for me, but it's not something he can't help with. I hate that when we argue about stuff like this, it feels like it's my side vs. your side - it often comes across as though it's MY problem or HIS problem... and this is supposed to be about us, together.

Wha wha wha... see, I feel like a whiner, but my feelings are not ridiculous or unjustified. I love him, even at 2:30 in the morning I love him, even when he's pissed off about something and I'm only trying to help and he becomes frustrated, I love him - but often times I don't think he realizes that his tone of voice, or the WAY he asks or says something, sends a much stronger signal than what he's saying. It's not about hearing the "I miss you so much, you're so amazing" mushy stuff - although that's great too - it's about feeling valued and cherished, and not about feeling like an obligation. Part of it is that no matter how alike we are in a lot of ways, on this subject we have a hard time seeing the other's point of view.... both of us are stubborn and both of us think we're right (and we probably both are right in a lot of ways) so we come to a point where we don't know where to find the middle ground.

Do you ever just feel like you are very gumby-esq in your relationship, always very willing to evolve and adjust to the other persons wants and needs, but they're not nearly as willing to do the same?

Blah. Sorry, I didn't intend for this to become a rambling post about all that... but maybe I needed to get it out there and write about it. After reading all that, it would appear that things are not going well... and that's not the case, overall, like I said, they are. I feel better about where we are now than where we were before, because at least now we're talking about the issues. I also recognize his desire to make it better. He's a wonderful man, and he never intends to come across like a jerk, he loves me unconditionally, which some days is saying a wholeeee lot :), and I know that if I had the answer and told him, he would do it. But the thing is, I don't have the answer, I don't know what would make it better other than to be reassured to the point that I no longer need to be reassured. He put it well last night when he said that when we took a step back it retarded our relationship a bit. That we will get back to that point, but we've got to rebuild it there, and the more we try and force it back to where we know we're capable of, we're going to keep running into this wall. The more I worry about things going to crap again, the more I'm afraid it will become a self fulfilling prophecy, and that's not what I want. Nor, what he wants, as he repeated numerous times last night. I think maybe I need to learn to let go (he's got stuff to learn too but I'll focus on me for the moment) - this territory is very uncharted for me, and I'm not sure exactly where to begin... I know and believe he's worth it, I think it's just going to take a little longer than I'd like.


Finally, in true Thanksgiving fashion: A list of things I'm most certainly thankful for this holiday season!

  • My faith. God has blessed my life more than I could ever imagine and I'm incredibly undeserving of it. He is my grace and my place to go when there's nowhere else to turn. I have absolutely no doubt that he is the reason I make it through a lot of days. Comfort in prayer late at night before I fall asleep is one of my favorite parts of my day.
  • My family. I have an incredible hodge podge of personalities in my family. We have not always had the best relationships, but we've grown a lot over the years. The past year has been a great healing for some of those and it's wonderful to finally feel reconnected. On top of that, I have the most wonderful and amazing siblings in the entire world. The one who is close in age is one of my best friends. He is brilliant and funny and has been my sidekick and partner in crime for almost twenty years. The second they brought him home from the hospital and laid him in front of me.... and I jumped on top of him.... I knew he could handle anything I threw at him (and often did). How we've grown from bickering pre-teens over who will unload the dishwasher to being one of the first people the other one calls when they really need a friend, is amazing. My little brother will always be my big protector. The others are much younger, there is over a decade between us, and that makes our relationship all the more special. It is wonderful to watch them grow, although often times I wish they would stop, and sometimes my heart longs to shield them from the experiences I know they will soon encounter, first heartbreak, first rebellion, first time they come to the conclusion that life is not fair. In many ways I helped raise them when I was still at home (but that's a much different story for a different day) and I miss them dearly, but if the welcome they give me when I see them for the first time in a while is any indication... they haven't gotten quite bored with their big sister just yet, so I'm thankful that I still have some time ;).
  • Sgt. - it's quite something for someone to often know you better than you know yourself. There have been a lot of times when I'm not exactly sure what I'm thinking and sure enough... if I ask him we can usually figure it out together :). Through everything we've been through, good and bad, I would never trade it in exchange for a different life, or a different person, or even a different journey. I know there are times we but-heads but with the two of us, I can't really imagine how we wouldn't. If our time together has shown me anything it is that one person can make you feel invincible if they're standing by your side. One person can make the worry and stress of a deployment melt away for a few moments with just one hug. One person can make you want to throw your phone across the room at the exact moment that all you really want to do is hold them. One person can say "I love you, and I have always loved you... even before I realized I loved you, the more I try and think back to when it first was, the further back I keep going" in a way that replays in your mind as if it was the first time all the time. One person can squeeze your hand in the car without saying a word and still give you butterflies. One person can inspire you to become more of the person you're supposed to be. One person can calm your fears over nearly anything, whether it be turning out like your mother, or conquering a centipede. One person can blast the good songs in the car and sing along with you in the dorkiest way without the slightest hint of judgement. One person can love you with all they have every day, even on the bad days. And that person for me, is him. I should really give him more credit than I do.
  • My friends are some of the most amazing women in the entire world - and no other words could do them justice. What we lack in ourselves we find in each other. Where there is an alternate life we'd like to explore, we live through one another. Where there is wine to be consumed.... we are close by :) I love them wholly and completely. A blessing is merely a glimpse of what they have all been for me.
  • Sgt.'s family - they have become my surrogates :). Funny, opinionated, strong, and most importantly, welcoming are just a few of the good things I can say about them. When I met them in an airport terminal a couple years ago I wouldn't have ever guessed we'd be where we are today, but I'm incredibly grateful. They are not just my boyfriends family, they have become my family even apart from him.
  • Coffeeeeeeee - oh, how you get me through the mornings.
  • Burts bees chapstick - please don't ever stop being produced... please, I might die a horrible and painful chapped lipped death. The minty tingle and subtle gloss you give to my lips is the closest thing I have to a great kiss most of the days :).
  • My job - When I came here a few years ago everyone always talked about it as though it were their escape... their place to get away from it all. For me, it was like coming home. Can't beat that. :) I look out the window from my desk and see a river glowing with orange cedar trees. In the summer the constant sound of children's laughter surrounds me, and a friendly face is never hard to find. This place has become a part of me and I can't imagine where I would be without it.
  • Everything else that gets me through the days :). For all the important "L's" - Life, Laughter, Learning, and most certainly Love (for everything) - I'm very thankful!

Hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving! Happy eating, football, & parade watching! Be safe traveling, if you are, and take lots of pictures!

(T-minus 8 hours till I get to wrap my arms around my favorite person :) )

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

under construction

Please avert your eyes, I've changed my new layout fifty times and am growing very frustrated so it's staying as this for now... which I don't like, and apologize for. But the good news is I DID figure out the 3 column thing!! (I'll post info later) but for now, I'm going to lunch.


Terrific Trio!

GOTCHA! Wow... I bet a ton of you just freaked out thinking I was pregnant. Nope, not a part of that blogging club :).

No, no... This is a much more complicated issue for me... I understand how babies are made, I do NOT understand how to get a freaking three column layout to save my life! I've even tried adding the HTML for a layout that SAYS it's three column but it's not letting me move page elements over... it's just stuck in this perpetual two column thing... it's annoying. HELP.

Please :(.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Let's talk Christmas

I know, it's a week before Thanksgiving still but I'm ready so I will be unapologetic!

1. This weekend I'm going to start decorating my place for the holidays :). I don't think I'll finish it all, but I plan on getting the lights put up and pulling out the decorations... hopefully I'll be able to post some pictures! I'm trying to think of themes for this year. Most of the stuff I have is pretty versatile and reusable for any theme. I saw a neat country/rustic type of theme that I really liked. Also, I was thinking of a red/gold/silver. Any other suggestions for themes?

2. I was thinking of gifts today and finally have a few that I think are actual good ideas. There are a couple of tweens and teens that I was thinking of getting monogrammed totes for and then putting in random fun stuff that's not too pricey. Like baked goods.... maybe some bath and bodyworks stuff... some cool jewelry... a good book, etc. Anyone have any good recommendations for monogrammed totes at reasonable prices? Then there is the question of Sgt.'s family that we're going to visit over Christmas. I've been thinking really hard about a gift for his Step-mom. She's opening up her home, to a girl she's never met, and at Christmas time none the less! I don't want to just get her a candle and call it a day... that seems too thoughtless for this occasion. On top of that, she's about the only family member of Sgt.'s that I'm nervous about meeting. Sgt. has mentioned on more than one occasion that we're very different and while I tend to believe I can get along with just about anyone... it's important to me that I don't leave her a bad impression of a southern girl who gossips, needs to be taken care of, and is fake. (I really don't think I give off that impression but like I said, nervous.) SO... my grand idea is this: Sgt. is, among many other things, an avid picture taker. Maybe photographer is the right word... hmm... anyway... he likes taking pictures and he's great at it! Really, he's taken some very beautiful pictures of places while in Germany and Europe. Sooo I was thinking that I could get a couple of the pictures that I really like, of things like pretty architecture or landscape, and get them matted and framed and put a small title underneath the picture like his name, the location and year the photo was taken. She could hang them up... and they have sentimental value. What do you guys think? Have any other ideas?? I may give that idea to Sgt. if someone gives me something else that's good since he's not entirely sold on any gift idea yet either (although he did like that one.)... Third on the list is Sgt.'s brother. Short stats are Marine, 21, single, generally good/laid back style, intelligent. I don't really know a lot about his interests, and I've done some stalking searching on his myspace to see if I could get any hint of an idea but I'm still coming up short. Any ideas? What's something like Marine cool? Maybe I could get him something Marine cool.... God, I sound like such a geek.

3. For a lot of people, this year will consist of baked goods in pretty wrapping. I've been looking around for some good holiday dessert recipes.... things that will hold up, cookies, fudge, etc... but haven't found anything that just strikes me so...... I know you have them :). Anyone care to point me in the right direction or give me some ideas? No fruit cakes, everything else is fair game!

I love the holidays!! The little town I live in is doing it's annual downtown lighting this Saturday and I'm going with a couple of friends from college. I'm excited. They do caroling and there is a small parade (we're talking 30 floats, most of which are boyscout troops, churches, and local rotary clubs) and then VOILA the courthouse and all the street corners are lit with fun and pretty lights :) Don't worry though, I haven't broken out the Christmas music.... yet.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Can Not DO IT

I can't. I can't form a well written, thought out post right now if my life depended on it. I want to blog, and I keep starting, but it's like 10 different subjects that only have about two sentences of elaboration available - and that doesn't make for an interesting post. Then I thought, ya know what, I'm just going to ramble and if I end up with bullet points, that's what I end up with.

Ok, here goes, bullet points -

  • Sgt. got back in last night from his FTX. We were able to text a couple of times while he was away but the majority of it was no contact, which surprisingly, didn't feel all that weird. Its times like that which make me wonder a couple of things: 1. Maybe we are supposed to be together if this is the sort of life he plans on having and I am able to deal with it so well. and 2. What the hell is wrong with me/us that a weekend of limited contact while my boyfriend is away at an Army post doing land nav courses feels NORMAL? It was really nice to finally get to talk to him for a little bit last night though. I had to go back to work (which we'll get to in a moment) and he was about ready to crash but hearing his voice after any time away always makes me happy :).
  • I got a second job. I fiddled around with the idea for a while. Technically I was surviving off of my one paycheck but that was basically it... surviving and with the holidays rolling around, the desire to visit Sgt. more often, and seriously SERIOUSLY wanting to go back to school, I needed to start making extra cash. Granted the job is not glorious, and it doesn't pay the big bucks, but it's extra income so I'm not too proud to flip burgers and fry fries if that's what it takes. Yes, that is what I'm doing by the way. I had to do something that would allow me to work nights but give me enough hours to make it worth my while of driving into town. I did apply for waitressing jobs around here but no one was hiring so - fast food it is.
  • I seriously need to do some Christmas shopping. I've gotten... ohh... none of it done! Lindsay put a bug in my ear about going to the San Marcos Outlet malls and I think it sounds like a FABULOUS idea :). Maybe Wednesday before Thanksgiving... I'm not one of those day after kinds of shoppers. I love to shop, but I get much too frustrated when there are so many people.
  • I feel very indifferent today and I'm not sure why. I don't like it.
  • I am in dire need of some new fall/winter clothes. We're talking close toed shoes, and sweaters. I have a VERY limited amount to my name and I'm not sure where exactly everything went but when the cold actually does hit (and it will, the last couple of days have been chilly with a nice cold front that blew in) I will be miserable.
  • After reading Loqui and Sara's posts about CrossFit - I'm seriously considering it. Any tips? There isn't a gym in the area that has a class so I'd have to do it on my own....
  • Everyone is having babies. EV-ER-Y-ONE. Real world and blog world I know over 10 couples. Now, I wouldn't say I have baby fever because I most certainly do not. I do not want any babies of my own right now. Not even a hint of longing... but it does create one of those "awww... name? boy or girl? colors? when are you due? that's so exciting!" type of feelings. And it sort of makes me miss the talk of progression in our relationship. Like I said, not that I want babies right now... or that I'm even ready to be married right now... I just miss the outlook of the future with him I guess. Blah, nostalgia.
  • I need a new camera. I'm definitely not in the fancy interchangeable lenses club.... don't get me wrong, I wish I was! But I'm just not that skilled or willing to spend the money. SO... for those of you who own a point and shoot digital camera... I'm interested in getting one that will be a good buy. Something that will take great pictures, has some options with the type of pictures it will take, and is just an all around great deal! I'm looking for something between $150 - $220... so if you have any recommendations, let me know!
  • I recently got a sitemeter and my new favorite thing to look at is where everyone comes here from! Except... now I'm freaking myself out... WHO ARE ALL THESE PEOPLE GETTING HERE FROM FACEBOOK!? My blog is not posted on my facebook. Does this mean someone else has my blog posted on theirs? Or does it just mean they were at facebook and then came here? WHO ARE YOU? And since I seem to have many more visitors than commentors, please say hi! I like seeing who you are, reading your blog, or just generally getting hello's if you enjoyed it!

Ok, I suppose that's it for now... like I said, ramblings all over the place! Hope everyone has a great week!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Neat stuff!!

So, for all of you who have a loved one stationed somewhere else around the world this holiday season, I wanted to share this little bit of information with you!

If you go to Stripes, which is a military newspaper publication found on many posts and bases throughout the world (including to areas where our military is deployed), you can send a holiday greeting to your loved one for free! You can even send one to a friend or to a unit. (unlimited!)

Just go to and click on the link at the top right hand corner. From there click "Send a message" and it's a piece of cake! I sent one for Thanksgiving and one for Christmas last year when Sgt. was deployed - just another way to get out the "I miss you and I'm thinking of you"'s so check that out!


In other news Sgt. is heading out to the field this weekend. He's been busy helping prepare his class for that. The mentor roll is something he really enjoys - listening to him talk about his guys, how they've improved, what they're starting to understand - makes me happy :). It's feels good knowing he's not miserable or hating something he's committed to.

Sorry, I know this blog is kind of empty with content. I'm working on a post it's just not flowing yet... hopefully tomorrow. Hope everyone has a great evening!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


**Let me start off first by thanking ALL of those who have served our country in her short but profound history. The men and women who grace our history books, and especially those who don't. For those who never got a proper thank you from their generation, and for those who some stories are just too hard to tell. For those who come by this blog and have loved ones who have served or are serving, who have served in the past or who are serving now, THANK YOU...**


He has these incredible blue eyes that change depending on what he's wearing - and I'm sure they've seen things.

His lips are delectable to kiss and never fail to spill out words that are capable of making me melt. They tell me he loves me and he misses me. They laugh with me and sometimes at me. They carry his voice, with it's southern draw and smooth depth. - they have also given orders. They speak Arabic. His lips have been thirsty and dry from time spent in a thirsty and dry place.

His ears remember to listen when I have a story to tell. They allow me to complain, or to swoon, or to chatter without protest. - But I'm sure they've heard gunshots, I'm sure they've heard mortars, and they have also listened to soldiers who are weary or tired.

His hands are strong and never fail to fit perfectly in mine. They can sweep hair out of my eyes, wipe a tear, and give some of the most amazing hugs - yet they have also held a weapon for protection.

His shoulders are firm, and they are always there to rest my arms on should I be in the mood for a piggy back ride or to lay my head on when I am tired - they've carried ruck sack after ruck sack, and have held up his IBA for long hours.

His arms can envelop me. They are my favorite. Even the markings on him encompass a memory for me, of us, and where we started - and they have also help lift and carry supplies, prepared for missions, handed out humanitarian aides, and held the Iraqi baby who made him laugh during his interview which gave me the first glimpse of his chuckle in what had been far too long.

His Legs have chased me around the room over a cupcake, and his feet have kept mine warm late at night when the covers don't help. They walk with confidence as he circles around the car to open my door... every time. - yet his legs have also worn dirty ACU's and his feet heavy boots. They have been up and going for many hours on patrol and have sustained their fair share of abuse from the daily grind of deployment, and war.

There is no one quite like him. Yet there are many like him.

Here and there, it is always him, and he will always been my hero. For all that he has sacrificed, and all he claims he hasn't, for his humble heart and tendency to want to evade any hoopla over his service, for EVERYTHING he has done to serve his country, I am so proud.

Happy Veterans day honey!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Great, GREAT weekend!

Well, got back in last night around 6:45 - 7:00 pm (honestly, I can't remember). I beat Sgt. home - we were texting each other the last hour or so updating where we were... I was sure he was going to beat me back to his house due to traffic on I35 but I came out victorious! Honestly, he really should have won, but I live in the boonies, therefore have less traffic lights than he does, and to top it off, his drive WAS about 20 miles longer than mine so overall, he made better time. I guess it's the little things we do to keep ourselves entertained :)

Friday I headed out of work around 1:00 and made a quick stop at wal-mart for a cheap pair of sunglasses. Heading back out after my under 10 min. shopping adventure, I can't find my keys. DAMN.... yep, there they are... locked in the car. It added about a 40 min lag in my trip but I pressed on! Next stop was San Antonio, Got there around 3:00 and met up with Lindsay for a late lunch, that turned out about an hour later than I had planned for us, but she's a trooper and thankfully didn't say "to hell with you, I'm going to eat!" :) Which is just another reason I think she's awesome! After lunch I hit the road, next stop, Texarkana! (ok, really, the next stop was a bathroom and probably a gas station... but you get the idea)

The short version is I hit rush hour traffic in Austin, and it took me nearly two hours to go about 60 miles. (town right before Austin to a town right outside of Austin) - like I said, I35 is an experience.

I continued to hit pockets of congestion along the highway but was determined to get there. After missing an exit in Waco, and almost getting lost in Dallas I was finally on the last stretch of highway, I30, to Texarkana. I got there around 11:30 and Sgt. arrived about 45 min. later :)

I heard him fiddling with the key in the door and immediately sat up excited. As soon as he came in, he let his bags sink to the floor and wrapped me up in the biggest hug. After some kisses and "I'm so glad you're here!"'s, he took a step back and made me smile BIG with what he did next.

He walked over to the clock on the night stand and turned it around, so we were unable to see it. He took his phone out and turned it off. He took his watch off and sat it on the dresser face down. No time, other than the time we had with each other. No other disturbances or need to constantly find out how much time we had left... just time together.

It was a fantastic weekend and, like every moment I get to spend with him, I am in awe of how much I love him.

We talked and laughed and goofed off together. He studied and I quizzed him on government terms for his test this morning. We watched a movie together. We drove around Texarkana and made fun of the lady driving down a one way street (because in a different scenario that could have likely been me). We went to a burger joint in town that my friend recommended, appropriately named TLC (I thought it was cute) - and WOW, was it good!! Not even kidding, I tend to think a burger is a burger but this was NOT just another burger. (ok, enough about the food... oh and their fries were awesome!) We went to marble slab and got ice cream. (It seems as though we ate a lot). We took pictures together, and got some really great ones! The kind that you look at and it just makes you smile, no matter who it's of? Those kinds. He took me out to dinner and we celebrated our belated anniversary. :) We just enjoyed being together. He brought me coffee and picked up breakfast to bring me in bed. He took care of me and loved me and we had FUN together. It was a much needed and deserved weekend for us both. I'm still smiling thinking about it!

His next visit will be over Thanksgiving so about another two and a half weeks. I can't wait to see him again and I already miss him, but I'm incredibly grateful we were able to get away together for a couple of days. Truth be told... it wasn't long ago when I hadn't seen him in over a year, so a few weeks here and there is definitely doable! With all the ups and in betweens that we've been through and will likely experience in the future, it's safe to say that he is by far, the only person I want or could imagine doing them all with!

My bed felt a little colder and a little emptier last night but my heart was definitely full. Overall, that's not a bad place to be :).

Friday, November 7, 2008

On the road again...

Yay! It's Friday!!

Around 1:00pm today, give or take 30 min..., I'll be hitting the road on my way to Texarkana for a weekend with Sgt.!

Now, Texarkana is not the most glorious place on earth, but it's got it's own flavor and of course, who could miss taking a picture in front of that sign! Ok, ok... so really, we're meeting there because it's pretty much half way between where I live, and where he lives in Tennessee. (Yes, Texas really is THAT BIG that half way is still in my state.) I can't wait though, I'm so excited! I'll probably arrive a couple of hours before him because he has to wait until he gets out of class. Poor guy is going to be exhausted, he's been up since... 3:00am(? about anyway) and will arrive around midnight... talk about determination!

Of course, I'm looking forward to the trip for obvious reasons: I miss him and haven't seen him in nearly 3 weeks... (can't believe it's already been that long!). This will also be our first visit since all that happened in Tennessee and when I got back... so I'm looking forward to reconnecting in person again instead of just over the phone. Don't get me wrong, the phone is great! And I am so blessed to be able to talk to him as often as I want, but there's something different about having a person there, and I know that nearly every single person who reads this blog can totally agree. We don't have anything fancy planned, other than spending time together, which in my opinion is the best plan we could make. He's got some homework and studying he'll have to do, and we'll have about a day and a half together total, but what matters is that we'll be together - and that's all I care about.
And then, there's the things I'm not looking forward to... take this beauty for example:

The good is that it's a straight shot from San Antonio to Dallas on this... er... beauty. Which works out well for someone like me who has a hard time realizing if a street is a one way or two way - however, the traffic on this monstrosity, especially on a Friday, is exhausting. Never mind the fact that they've been doing construction on the thing (and I would imagine most highways are like this) since I can remember (and I've lived in Texas for most of my life) - but it also goes through three major metropolitan cities. San Antonio, Austin, and Dallas. I've hopefully timed it out so I will miss rush hour in most places... although I have a feeling I'll get caught up in Dallas, but traffic on 35 can be a nightmare.

Oh well, it'll all be worth it in the end.

I guess that's pretty much the only downside. I thought I might be a little more anxious about how things between us would be, but I'm not. We're just excited to see each other! Maybe that will change the longer I have time to think about it on the 8 hour drive, but I think I'll be ok!

Hope y'all have a great great weekend! "See" ya, when I get back!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

and there's more!

The fabulous Becca and wonderful J.L.S. both tagged me for another award in the blogosphere! I totally geek out over things like this and am probably a little more excited than a normal person should be :) but hey. Thank y'all so much!!

**Their blogs are totally awesome, and are linked through their name but sometimes my font color doesn't show it's a link so I wanted to make sure you knew!**

And I'm sending this gem along to Casey at Ever Changing Life of a Military Wife! Her blogs never cease to make me laugh, she's a teacher... which is something I would love to get back to, and she's always asking people to delurk... of which I am doing... now. :) I don't want to tag too many people as this is a small blog world but please trust that if your blog is over there on my left hand side bar... I really think you're a super scribbler and I LOVE your blog!

In other news... is this day ever going to end... I just want it to be Friday!!

Blogger love!

Yay! My very first blog award :)... actually I don't know if it's an award, more of a sticker statement but I am very flattered! Thanks Loqui!

Now, according to her post I'm supposed to answer all these questions and then tag 6 other bloggers who's blog's I love (this is going to be tough!) Truthfully, I'm supposed to answer these questions with just one word, but as Loqui pointed out, I'm not really the "short winded" type of person (which I also take as a compliment! :) ) so I'm nixing that rule. Here we go!

1. Where is your cell phone? My purse, which happens to be under the desk.... lets hope the ringer is up loud enough for me to hear it!

2. Where is your significant other? School I'm sure... if I had to be more specific probably in the cadet lounge at ROTC or in the Library doing homework.

3. Your hair color? Brown (Hey that was one answer!... until this... but still)

4. Your mother? There are no words... well... ok, my mother is a survivor, but she's also a victim... vague and confusing, I know.

5. Your father? A good man, hardworking, and cares deeply about his family.

6. Your favorite thing? Can I do a top five? (in no particular order) 1. Hugs and Kisses from the right person 2. Flowers for no reason 3. riding horses 4. traveling 5. Gingerbread latte's (I just realized I have WAY more favorites than that)

7. Your dream last night? Oh, so weird! Sgt. and I were talking about guns prior to bed... and in my dream, I was with these people and I got shot in my hip. Ya know, like... a little to the inside from my hip bone (my right hip bone to be specific). So, I get shot and I decide I need to go to a hospital, which I don't know where it is, and decide that I can't drive, I must walk. So I walk and I'm constantly bleeding the entire time, except the wound is the size of a pin hole... SMALL... so I'm ok, just consistently bleeding. Then, the camp nurse was there... strange. And then I went on to dream other things, but the entire time I still had this gun shot wound. Crazy.

8. Your dream/goal? Happiness, fulfillment, a family

9. The room you're in? The office *slouches* - I'm a work blogger too... yikes!

10. Your hobby? journaling, blogging, cooking, scrapbooking!

11. Your fear? Cockroaches, disfiguring car accidents, losing people I love.

12. Where do you want to be in six years? Teaching, happy! I suppose I could throw in a few others but for now that'll do :)

13. Where were you last night? At home

14. What you're not? warm... I'm freezing right now! I'm also not an introvert, not a good driver, not tall and not miserable :)

15. One of your wish list items? board games - love them, want more.

16. Where you grew up? San Antonio, New Braunfels, and Kerrville TX

17. The last thing you did? wrapped a blanket around myself

18. What are you wearing? Jeans, a long sleeve simple tee, and a pashmina

19. Your T.V.? it's silver, and hopefully turned off

20. Your pet? No pets. Not enough space, money, or time - but man I would love a dog!

21. Your computer? broken - very sad.

22. Your mood? good! Ready for tomorrow to be here already!

23. Missing someone? Always (yes, another one word!)

24. Your car? Ohhh the protege. She's a good little car.

25. Something you're not wearing? rings

26. Favorite store? hmm.... Target for general items, Forever 21 for a lot of tops and dresses, Bed, Bath, and Beyond to look and play in! :)

27. Your Summer? Camp... camp camp camp camp camp.

28. Love someone? Very much!

29. Your favorite color? Green, turquoise, white, pink, yellow.

30. When is the last time you laughed? last night

31. Last time you cried? umm.... the a few Sunday's ago - whenever that was.

annndddd now I'm tagging:
  • Lindsay from And We'll Just Laugh Along The Way - She's my "I've met her in real life bloggy-friend" and she's awesome! Love reading all about her life with *R*, her trips, her cooking... I sound like a stalker now, I'll stop.
  • Becca from Army Doctor's Wife - I totally agree the three of us should get together sometime, I didn't know you were in San Antonio either! Anywho, her and K are an absolutely adorable couple and I like getting to hear about their unique situation with K being in the Army medical field! Great stuff!
  • This one is a two-fer - Jamie and Caroline from USO Girls - What else is there to say about these girls than they rock, they provide countless feel-good stories about the people they meet volunteering through the USO and they never cease to look like they're having a blast enjoying life!
  • Sid Lovely from Goodbye Apathy - She's a fellow girlfriend and is learning her own way through post deployment and a long distance relationship! All the while going to school, the girl does some serious juggling but all with a wonderful amount of grace!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The next president.

Last night I parked it in front of the TV with a glass of wine and Sgt. on the phone to watch the election coverage in real time together.

Hopeful and with constant commentary, we watched polls roll in. We discussed with slight sarcasm in our voice the things we disagreed with. With nervousness in our voices we watched Florida and Virginia go back and forth.

As the California polls closed and President elect Obama's name lit up on the screen we had already begun discussing this weekend. The election was over for us. Nothing we could do anymore. We voted... a privilege fought for and maintained by the many men and women in our country who selflessly serve and have served for over 200 years... and that was all we could do.

Am I disappointed in the loss of the campaign of my choice? Yes, absolutely, and I am weary and nervous of President elect Obama's ability to do all he says. I may disagree, and I may believe certain decisions, policies, and choices would be better off made another way, but whats done is done.

I watched both the acceptance and concession speeches today, and I must say, that despite my disagreements, the desire for America to continue to be great and to rise up to her potential seemed to be a common ground we can all find.

And lastly, how great it is to live in a country where I can openly express my disappointment in the choice of our nations next president without fear. I can respect and even listen to someone with a different opinion, we can discuss it, and now we can move on.

The bottom line is I believe what I believe, but I am not so close minded as to think there is absolutely no other way. Maybe he is what we need, and maybe he's a mistake, but the great thing about this country is we get a chance to find out and we can choose differently in the future if we'd like. He is my president, and he is my boyfriends new boss, and I do believe he deserves the respect that at least those two positions warrant him.

Here's to the next four years! And a congratulations to Senator Obama's daughters, who get a new puppy to take along to the white house :)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Holiday fever.

Things between Sgt. and I are going wonderfully! Really, it's good to feel like we're getting back to "us." We continue to talk about our time apart and all that was involved with that which I think is important and healthy, but we are now able to discuss it without hurt feelings. We can talk about what we were feeling or trying to say and there's not this big worry that it's going to upset the other or make things worse. Love it! We're both excited about this weekend and looking forward to getting away, meeting on neutral ground, and getting to just be together.

I'd like to take just a moment to brag on him for a minute if I can. We are making lots of plans for the upcoming holiday season. With four different families to attend to and three different states involved, spanning all the way north to all the way south and slightly east... to say that the next couple months will be busy is an understatement. Sgt however is taking it all by the horns and is doing everything he can to make things run as smoothly as possible. I tend to worry a lot around the holidays over family issues. Ever the people pleaser, I am usually making sure no one feels alone or left out, making sure that I get to spend time doing some of the things I'd like to do, and making sure that things are set up early enough so we don't have to freak about it when the time comes. The man is doing everything he can to reassure me and take some of the weight off. Better than that though, he's including me in it! He's asking for my input but then taking care of the final process. He's asking what I'd like to do and then offering any help he can, and it is awesome!

Something I ran into this year is Thanksgiving. I really love thanksgiving but it's been difficult the last few years with the way my family operates. My dad and his new wife usually head to her families house which is a few hours away and doesn't leave a lot of room to see anyone else on the day. New wife is pretty good with the guilt trip scheme and often pauses and sighs when I am trying to decide if I can make it or not. I love my dad, and my brother whom I'm incredibly close to will probably go along with them... but spending time with her is absolutely draining, and sometimes I have to bite my tongue around her.

My mom lives with her... boyfriend? Who I despise, and who is a complete jerk, and treats my mom like much less than she deserves so I've also avoided going over there for Thanksgiving, mostly under protest and because of the fact that I can't stand to be around the guy for more than 30 min. However, this has made me feel guilty because although my mom and I have a history full of drama and low points... she is my mom, and the fact that she has none of her children with her and is surrounded by someone who at best acknowledges her and at worst embarrasses her - particularly during the holidays - is hard.

Sgt.'s family who has become as much a part of my family as anyone else, invited me out for their Thanksgiving last year and to avoid my own family drama I attended and it was great!

This year Sgt. is home, which adds in a whole new fun element :) (and I do not mean that in a snarky way at all. Having him home for the holidays is an incredible blessing!) Because I want to spend time with him, and vice versa, and because our families want to spend time with us... it makes for an interesting situation. For Christmas this year Sgt. and I are heading north to visit his other family and we will be there for Christmas. I broke the news to my parents this past weekend and my dad took it well, as he really likes Sgt. and understands that it's my choice. My mom, despite the fact of not having spent an entire Christmas day with me in about 4 years, kind of went nuts and wasn't really receptive to the fact. She gets it... and she will be fine... but since I won't be seeing her at Christmas I decided that this year, I would see her for Thanksgiving.

I was explaining all this to Sgt. and how we would probably end up spending Thanksgiving apart but that I would see him later that day, that I caved and decided to spend some time with my mom. Keep in mind that he hasn't gotten to spend a thanksgiving with his own family in... two, maybe three years? Yet, without hesitation, he asked me if I would like him to come with me. There wasn't a hint of obligation in his voice. He told me he knew that often, times spent with my mom were emotionally draining, that he knew I felt uncomfortable in the house, and that if I wanted his support, even just to know he was there, he'd be glad to do it. He offered to miss the main meal with his own family, to spend it with my dysfunctional one.. and with me. Completely selfless and putting me first. Wow. I told him how much I appreciated it and how much it would mean to me and DOES mean to me... but I don't think I can ever put what I really mean into words. I told him we wouldn't stay all day. We could get there early, I could help her cook, we may or may not stay until the meal time, but that come hell or high water, I would have him back at his families for their main meal... because him getting to spend time with his OWN family for Thanksgiving is important to me. I don't want him to miss it, even though I don't think he would complain and I know he is ready and willing to show up later on... him getting to do that is something I want, even more so now that he is offering to not do it in exchange for supporting me.

Even when we go through hard times, and even when we hit a wall - I can always be reminded that on even the worst day, his encouraging words and his unwavering chivalry will pull me through. And of course, it's always nice to be able to have someone to laugh with about the nuts throw into the recipe :)

Friday, October 31, 2008

I love you

And if for no other reason, that one is good enough.

Sgt. called. So no, we didn't quite make it to our two weeks. Truth is, I was dying for him to call anyway, I missed having him there. Sgt. is my best friend, the person I want to talk to as soon as anything happens. On top of that, I am in love with the man. Not getting to share things with him or having him a part of my life, hurt. The day before I had finally decided that no matter what, I would be just fine, that I loved him enough to let him go if that's really what he needed, but darn it, I just wanted him back in my life! I just wanted to tell him that I spilled coffee all over myself trying to rush out the door in the morning!

We talked a lot. I mean, phone on the side of the face is really hot, a lot. Phone battery is dying, a lot. However, I promised that I would keep the details of our conversation just between us and I have in all the other areas of my life, as I will here.

We agreed that we wanted to keep trying. That we're not perfect, and that there are things we can and will work on. We both need to communicate with each other more and there are places in our relationship where we need to figure out a balance, as we react on very opposite ends of the spectrum to the same situation. But I think, that our faith in each other, the love that we share, and our willingness and desire to figure it out will make everything come back together and grow stronger with time.

He loves me, and I love him. Good and bad, past, present, and future - he's what I want. I know it will take some time. We won't be able to just jump back in and pretend none of this happened, it did happen, and we'll allow it to be a part of our story together.

As much as I hated our time apart, and he did as well, looking back on it I think it was necessary. Not in every relationship, (and I certainly won't propose it as a solution the next time we argue because if it happens again it becomes a problem in itself, not a solution) but we needed to look at our relationship with each other as one piece of an otherwise large puzzle. Everything else that is going on in our lives, with reintegration and with school and with work and with the distance... it's all a piece of the puzzle, but what WE have together, what we are to each other, is something that we stopped looking at individually and we needed a harsh reminder. It wasn't fun, but sometimes the necessary isn't.

We're planning on seeing each other in about a week and I can't wait! The last time we were holding each other it felt like my heart was tearing apart, and I look forward to replacing that last memory with a better one. With one as us starting another chapter, completely in love and completely determined. Neither of us knows the answers, but we're willing to figure them out together, with each others help... and I couldn't ask for more than that. :)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Good company!

Things at work are pretty slow today and the office is freezing so I'm doing my best to stay huddled in my chair. There is a large stack of files that need to be alphabetized calling my name but I'll get to it soon enough.

Last night I met up with Lindsay at a restaurant in San Antonio and I had so much fun!! Sushi was extremely tasty, drinks were good (and necessary after the last week I had don't ya think?!), and the conversation was super easy and fun! Got there around 6 and we just sat there taking up a booth and chatting away about everything until we looked down and realized it was almost 10:30! I know it's a cliche but I'm going to say it anyway - Time flies when you're having fun. I'm really really glad I went! Oh, and by the way, saw the ring up close and it's gorgeous! Lindsay, seriously, we're going to have to get together again sometime!

Not much else to update on. Today has been a pretty easy day! Hope everyone else is doing good!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Manic Monday

Well, after that downer of a post on Saturday, I headed into town to the bookstore (again) and stopped off at Starbucks to try one of their new signature hot chocolates! I give the salted caramel hot chocolate 4 1/2 stars!

A little bit later on I met up with Sgt.'s cousins and we went out to the house to visit, play scrabble, relax and eat. Good times, good company, it pretty much made up for the earlier portion of the day and even though we did get around to talking about Sgt., for much of the evening we tried to avoid it. She did tell me that he had a rough night on Friday, and ended up dancing alone rather drunk at a Coyote Ugly in downtown Nashville. I'm indifferent to the fact. I'm glad he went out with some of his friends.... I'm half glad that he's not taking this well... and half sad that he had to get wasted and then dance (the man doesn't dance... ever). My question was "Well, why was he dancing alone?" - I'm all for missing me but he's a good looking guy, he could've surely found someone to sway with - "I don't think he WANTED to dance with anyone else... besides he was trashed." Fair enough answer I suppose. Even still, I return to the "If it sucks this bad then why are you doing it!" statement

Sunday was a bit of a different story. I guess it all sort of caught up to me being the one week mark. I couldn't get the images of the day out of my dang head. I just kept hearing it all... seeing it all. From waking up next to him that morning to watching him blow me a kiss and walk into the terminal they wouldn't go away. My face was leaking (ok, I was crying) pretty much the entire morning and then I slept through the afternoon. Around 4:30 I woke up (again, out at Sgt.'s families house for supper) and visited with some people who were over. I was ok then... not great, but ok. At least I wasn't crying anymore. Sgt. called a little bit later (I can always tell when it's him on the phone) and I tried to stay out of ear shot... even though I would've loved to hear the conversation, I realize it's not my place or what I need. I did however hear her say (while she was walking around.... like I said, tried to avoid it) "You should call her" "I know, but trust me, she wants you to call" Which is mostly true. Like I said before... I implemented the two weeks but it would show a little bit of selflessness in swallowing some of his pride by calling sooner. Of course that's only in the event where there would be good news. If the news is bad I could just as soon wait another week to hear it. I do miss talking to him though.

Which brings me to my final topic (I guess topic?) - our mutual friend A.D. spent the weekend with Sgt. and he also tends to e-mail me while I'm at work. He e-mailed me this morning and although we agreed to leave Sgt. out of the talk, he still likes to throw in a comment here and there. In short he told me that he has absolutely no doubt that Sgt. loves me and doesn't want to lose me. But that for most of his adult life, he's been told what to do, where to do it, and how to do it, and he doesn't really know how to make his own decisions. Least of which, who he wants to spend the rest of his life with. That in essence, he needs to grow up, and get some of that young rambunctious kid out of him. That being a friend to him, tough as it might be, will allow me to still be close to him and maybe learn a different side of him while he's going through it, but not force me to be strung along by someone who is having a hard time even knowing who he is at the moment.

Ok. Maybe it's just the mood I'm in at the moment... and I know he may read this... so my disclaimer is I love him more than anything, but my heart is a little on the defensive right now. Bear with me, and forgive any snarky tone, please.

Point 1. Sgt, is being selfish. Sorry, but it's true. I realize that he never got to be the young college kid, with no cares and doing as he pleases, but that's the way life worked out buddy. I completely, 100% AGREE that he needs to learn to make his own decisions, and that he needs to ENJOY his time out of the Army, and his time in college, but thinking that doing that means living out wild weekends with 18 year old college freshman makes you sound ridiculous. And pushing away someone you claim to love, because you're afraid you're missing out on something that amounts to nothing more than a couple of "remember that time" stories is SELFISH. Sorry, but you're not doing me any favors, regardless if that's what you tell yourself to sleep at night. He's afraid of loosing me? Well, he's choosing every day not to be with me. And if you're afraid of loosing someone, you 1. don't allow someone else the opportunity to take your spot and 2. if there ARE issues that are affecting the relationship, you work your butt off to figure them out and fix them quick so that you're not loosing someone.

Point 2. If he's not ready to make that commitment (engagement), it's not a deal breaker. I never even brought up the thought of engagements and marriage, until he did. He's the one that pushed the issue so much and I went with it because of course I love him and of course I want to spend the rest of my life with him. Those are still true, but I love him enough to meet him where he is... and if that's not married right now then that's ok... I'm not at the point where I feel like we have to be married. YES being told that you don't after you said you did, hurts, but when that happened I need him to stick around. To hang in there. I stuck around when it was hard. When our relationship was maintained on prayer, and sporadic phone calls and short e-mails and IM conversations. I hung in there when he was in "soldier mode" and gave him and his love the benefit of the doubt. I stayed strong and believed in us. Now, he's walking away when it gets difficult, when there is a lot going on? Why?

Point 3. If he decides that what he needs right now (and frankly, the more I think, pray, and talk to other people about it, the more I believe we're heading in this direction. No matter how much I hate it) is to not be with me, I can respect that. Does it mean I want to cut him out of my life? No, not at all. I love him more than anything and even hate the fact NOW that we're not talking... but I can't be his friend. Not right now. In time, yes. How much time, I don't know, but I believe it's a place we can get to, just not right now. Because, I am in love with him, and talking on the phone and then hanging up without getting to tell him how much I love him and miss him physically and emotionally hurts. Because hearing him tell me about dates he's going on and asking about girls he's interested in or hangs out with is not possible without being jealous or self-doubting right now. Because I can't tell him about people I'm seeing without wanting him to feel like an idiot for letting me go. I can't be his friend right now because I don't WANT to be just his friend right now.

I miss him. I want to talk to him. But I am also angry at him today. He needs to understand that he WILL lose me. Because if on Monday, that's where we end up, I will begin to do other things. I will try and see other people, and I will jump at the first chance I see at being in love again (even though, I'm not sure if that's possible anytime soon). And the longer he waits, and the longer he feels like getting out some young rowdy kid inside him, the more I feel like not fighting for us. I'm tired of being the only one fighting.


In other news, I am meeting up with Lindsay from And We'll Just Laugh Along the Way for dinner and some shopping this evening and I can't wait! Have a great day everyone!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Only twice?

Well, it's been a pretty slow morning. Despite my efforts to stay busy, after cleaning and showering and curling my hair (because it takes a while and I wasn't doing anything else) and reading some of a book... I'm out of things for the time being so I figured instead of wallowing I'd blog.

Last night was good. Went to the local high school football game and watched Sgt's cousin experience her last home football game as a high school student. Oh senior year of high school. Everyone was there, all his cousins and aunt and uncle and close family friends, and of course I've become close to them as well so it wasn't awkward. For the first time no one asked "how are you doing?" in that way that means "How are you dealing with have your heart ripped out by that guy we love?" So I was thankful for that.

When I woke up this morning I was already bummed. Saturdays he would always get up before me and if we were apart, he would always send me a text message around my usual wake up time. "Good morning beautiful!" and this morning it didn't come.

I miss him.

I've been wondering a lot lately if you only get two love's in your life. Your first love, and the love of your life. You often don't hear anyone describe anyone else... you never hear about the "middle love" or the "third love" usually when people are thinking back or reminiscing about a memory of a love, lost or not, it's always "He was my first love" or "He was the love of my life."

I can't decide if this line of thinking gives me hope or makes me more miserable.

You see, I've had my first love. *J* - (Sgt. is also a J name... I must have a thing for them). *J* was my high school sweetheart. Took me to prom my freshman year of high school and we never looked back until my freshman year of college. We had grown up, and eventually grew apart. Nothing huge or dramatic, although I'd never experienced a heartbreak like that before in my life, but fact was, we were just different people now. We had a lot of good memories, and he will forever be a part of that time in my life. I loved him, for a long time he was the one person I never felt like I had to hold on my shoulders, as I did with most of the people in my life. With *J* I learned how to be taken care of. However, I learned most about myself the year and a half following our break up. I don't think at the time we broke up, I would've ever had the courage to do it, we had been together so long I didn't really think of us not being together as an option, but after we broke it off, I learned how to take care of myself. To not NEED to be taken care of by someone else... and I got to put myself first for a while. Of course, as the story goes, he came back, eventually after he'd found out I was seeing someone else, and after that short romance ended, I decided to give him another chance. A week later I realized my heart wasn't in it anymore and we broke it off for good. *J* and I are still friends. We talk maybe only a couple of times a year, but there's no bitterness between us. He was my first love, and although, I don't "hold a place in my heart" for him, like a lot of people claim to, I look back on that time in my life fondly, and with no regrets.

I dated a few guys between *J* and Sgt. They ranged in the span from just someone I dated, or went on a few dates with to a few boyfriends who lasted a few months. Some of them were good guys, and people I enjoyed spending time with. Others were horrible to me, and only hardened my heart away from relationships all together. Overall though, they all would've never measured up to more than someone just passing through, or someone I was just passing over. When Sgt. showed up, I expected him to just fall into this category the way the others had but there we were, saying goodbye one day for a PCS to Germany after only a few months of dating and I couldn't think of anything other than how I didn't want him to go. I was already falling in love with the man and as much as I tried to push the feelings aside, there they were, plain as day. When he left, I tried to date other guys, but he was it, all I wanted and from then on no one else ever even came close. Germany was tough, and even though he told me that he couldn't be in a relationship at the time, in a foreign country, not sure the next time we'd see each other, about to deploy, I never gave up hope. I kept it to myself mostly, but I always felt deep down like we would be together.

Little did I know a stubborn Sgt. who had tried to convince himself this girl was just some girl, never stopped carrying my picture while stationed in Germany. And when a young LT. asked him who she was and Sgt. gave the standard answer of "she's just a girl" the LT who knew the look all too well, pointedly asked Sgt. when we'd be getting married. When he deployed for his second tour, he began to allow himself to talk openly about me to his buddies. During one such conversation his friend looked at him and said "Dude, you're an asshole" and a couple days later he was making a speech to me about not being able to give me everything but if I was willing to hang in there, he would sure try.

I played a little hard to get but the fact of the matter was I was hooked from the moment he took my hand while walking me back to the car on our first date. There was no one else but him, and there was nothing else but us.

Not a day went by where I didn't feel like the luckiest girl in the whole world just by being able to call him mine. Sure there were hard times, and trying to thrive in a relationship during a deployment isn't the easiest thing we'd ever done but we hung in there, because we loved each other, and that was enough of a reason. I sought out every day a way to make him smile or to feel wanted, missed, and loved. Anytime we got to talk or message each other I felt like the only person in the world that mattered. He made me feel ALIVE. Energized, like I could do anything and he would be there to cheer me on. I wanted to make him happy, I wanted him to know how much I respected him and cared for him. He used to tell me that I gave him the perfect day, and that no matter what happened in his life from that moment on, I would always be the woman who gave him something he never thought he could have. He used to tell me how blessed he was to have me in his life, how he was daily baffled at the fact I was really there. He told me that I would never realize how much I had taught him about love, and life. We loved each other with a fire, with a purpose, and unconditionally.

I still do, which is what makes this so hard, and so unbearable. What do you do when the one person who's love could literally CARRY you, is gone? I know I can't see into the future, but if we end up over, and move on about our lives, I don't see how it would ever be possible to find this again.

Sgt. is without a doubt, the great love of my life. Loving him brought me to life, made me realize what I wanted for myself, on a daily basis made me want to strive for more. Loving him turned the simplest word or act of kindness into a breath of fresh air for my heart, and soul. Just getting to see him smile was enough to wake up in the morning. Now what? What if there's only two? What if there's only your first love, and the love of your life, and the love of your life never comes back? What do you do then? Settle, I suppose.

God, this hurts. I miss him so so so so much.