I’ve had quite a bit of time to think in the week I’ve been home – and in the 3 days I have left, I’m sure the thought will continue to pester me – but I feel very much like I’m one person trying to live in two very different worlds. Or maybe it’s that I’m trying to be two different people? I’m not sure. Either way…it’s hard, and it hurts, and a lot of the time it makes me wonder why the hell I volunteered for this.
Even after the catastrophe that was my Basic training experience, a lot of embracing the suck – I’m still glad I joined. I’m not even finished yet. It’s still hard. But the discipline is a good kind of pain. I’m doing what I’ve always wanted to do. I love a challenge. Usually mental challenges are more my thing, but the army is challenging me all the way around. Physically, mentally, emotionally…sometimes it feels like more than I can handle, but then I remind myself I just have to get through today. It’s a good kind of pain.
Then there’s…the rest of my life. The motivation for being in the army. The people I love, that I want to create a home for and that I want to be there for. There’s the life I want to live outside the uniform. Where long hikes, beautiful gardens, yummy cupcakes, pretty quilts, delicious home-made bread, mail art, and four-legged friends are a daily part of my existence.
How do I combine the two? I feel like I’m being torn in half. Maybe it’ll be different once I’m out of training. There’s just no time. No time for anything. So many things I want to do…and some of them, there’s no point to doing until I’m at my permanent assignment (like the organizing/decorating of our apartment…we’re moving everything in 4 months or less, so it’s pretty pointless), some of them I just honestly don’t have enough time to finish while I’m home. That’s another thing. I feel like nothing is finished. I haven’t finished anything, accomplished anything, in a long time. Well, I did graduate Basic. I guess that was a big one. But still.
I started writing this in my head on Christmas Day…was too busy with all the goings on to post anything but I had to write it now!
It’s going to be a beautiful day. Beautiful because I get to spend it surrounded by some of the people I love most. Of course I don’t get to see everyone I’d like to, but I’m still incredibly blessed to get to have a day with my amazing boyfriend, his son, and their family. Over the past couple years they’ve welcomed me into their hearts and home until I feel almost as comfortable with them as I do my own family, and I love them with all my heart. The past year I haven’t even been here and I still felt their support and care through all the distance.
We had a quiet Christmas, spent most of the day just chilling at home and the evening having dinner with Other Half’s extended family. I made 6 dozen bread rolls – seriously feel like I’m channeling my own grandmother with that, since her bread is absolutely legendary in our family, in her church, in the county…seriously. Legendary. I can’t hope to ever live up to that standard but I do love to make bread and share it with anyone who will have it!
I barely decorated this year. The tree in the last post, stockings, and a strand of lights hung up around the room was it! True college dorm (bachelor pad?) style. I have so many ideas of how I want to decorate for Christmas…kind of hard to do though when you’re a thousand miles away and have an impending move hanging over your head! I was really glad I did a little bit though, even if it’s not as put together or special as I would have liked. Last year I didn’t feel like decorating at all. I was still trying to get over losing all the ornaments I had from my parents’ tradition of gifting their kids one for each Christmas. I’m still bummed about it, but I’m ready to move on. Which, I hope through this year, means making ornaments both for myself and for friends and family.
2015 is almost here and I’m really glad to have this year behind me. It’s been a rough year with a lot of growth. Growth is good but it’s sometimes painful, and I’ll have to admit I’m hoping this coming year has a lot more settling and a little less growing!
Well, it looks like Christmas inside…but outside it’s almost 50 degrees and rainy!
My other half sadly had to work today and probably won’t be home till late, so I’m holed up in our little place by myself. I’m really feeling the homebody vibe right now, so I’m okay with that. I had a really lazy morning drinking coffee, reading the mail (only 2 cards this year, probably because everyone is confused about where the hell I am), and gleefully wrapping Other Half’s presents…which, as I’ve told him umpteen times now, aren’t really Christmas presents…they’re really just stocking stuffers, because we haven’t really done Christmas presents before but I had to have stockings. This year I actually wanted to decorate, where I was a total Scrooge last year. It happens. Life gets better. 🙂
I seriously feel like I must be the happiest person on the planet right now.
I’m so happy to be home, happy to be waking up next to my love this morning, so happy to have my kitty following me around meowing like an idiot…just. So. Happy.
I’m a real believer in the saying that sometimes you don’t appreciate what you have until it’s gone. Being away from everyone and everything I love is the hardest thing I’ve ever gone through, but it truly makes the homecoming that much sweeter. Sometimes you have to feel the cold before you can enjoy being warm.
For real, not just in my dreams! I can’t wait, I’m so excited about seeing all my friends and family. AIT is a heck of a lot better than Basic, but we’re still locked down pretty tight. It’ll feel so good to be home and relax!
I feel a little guilty about going home, to be honest…when I think of all the people deployed or stationed away from their loved ones that can’t go home this year. What have I done to get to go home? Nothing. I know one day it’ll be my turn, but still.
I am an American Soldier.
I am a Warrior and a member of a team.
I serve the people of the United States, and live the Army Values.
I will always place the mission first.
I will never accept defeat.
I will never quit.
I will never leave a fallen comrade.
I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills.
I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself.
I am an expert and I am a professional.
I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy, the enemies of the United States of America in close combat.
I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life.
I am an American Soldier.