We received my husband's packing list of all the things we need to put in his conex box for war. It needs to be ready by the next guard drill...in 3 weeks. Hubby handed me the list without much emotion or inflection in his voice...just very matter-of-fact. Have you ever felt your heart drop and struggle to choke the tears stinging to erupt?
My calling is to be the strong army wife...I owe it to him. I can't break down, I can't scream uncle, I can't throw in the towel. No complaints about what is being heaped onto my plate for my burden compared to his is quite painless. This is not a choice...for either of us. So I will hold my head high, I'll keep my shoulders broad, and I'll secure my boots on tightly...for the world seems to have gotten heavier, darker...doom seems to have weighed down my heart.
It all seems to be getting so much more "real". For months now "it" has been the unspoken of our family, the elephant in the room, the taboo subject we never brought up. But I can see it on my horizon...and I'm scared. But I won't let anyone see that fear. My game-face is on. I owe it to my hubby to be strong- not just strong, Army strong. I must be mother and father to 4 little boys. I need to reassure them that it will be ok...and that we will pray for daddy's safe return.
We haven't broken the devastating news to our sweet babes yet. They will struggle with the news, but one child I pray for daily. My sweet #1. He was 4 when daddy left for his first tour...and he is scarred. He will need help; more than I can give. I feel panic and anxiety and my emotions are constantly threatening to boil over. So I push them harder and harder into that dark place in which I don't dare venture. I clench my jaw...and shut the door on the outside world.
Lord please help me with this path You have set my family on. I want to accept this challenge, this burden...with grace and dignity...and strength. Lord please give me strength. Give me the wisdom to know where to seek help and support for my boys...and give me the courage to accept it when offered. Lord please take away this bitterness that poisons my heart...this anger that chokes me. I don't know if I can do this. I don't seem to have the answers...please help me to trust in You. Lord please give #1 courage and peace- he will struggle so much with this information and saying goodbye. Please wrap your arms around #2 with love and understanding- he won't be able to control his tears. Lord give #3 peace and love- he will be so confused and scared. Please give my sweet baby #4 comfort and the blessing or memories- I am so afraid he will forget his daddy- Lord please keep his daddy in his heart. Mostly Lord please keep hubby safe- please bring him home to our family.