We starred at each other as the early morning dawn stretched through our window, shifting our bodies into bold silhouetted lines. Neither one of us moved. We remained frozen with rapidly beating hearts, soaking in the moment as William slowly breathed in and out in a calming rhythm. My breathing eventually became in sync with his and my heart relaxed to a slower beating manor, steadying myself for the inevitable. I begged time to stop, to freeze this moment, but we knew that our final hour was quickly approaching.
I told myself that I was going to hold it together. I was going to keep myself composed and strong and be a rock for my kids, but that didn’t go as planned. One look into Krysta’s huge quarter-sized eyes swelling into tears and I lost it. I was done. Finished. The lump that has been burning my throat for days dropped into my stomach releasing the flood waters to burst through the dam, leaving me in a sea of tears.
We tightly hugged, kissed our last kiss, and said “see you later” and “I love you” and “I’ll see you in the fall”. We turned to part ways, and I watched him as he disappeared through the double doors.
And then, just like that he was gone.
Evenings are the most difficult to bare during a deployment. It’s the part of day when Ron walks through the door from work, where Krysta comes home from school, and where we gather around the table for dinner and homework. We have a routine; a routine that runs like clockwork. We all work together like the turning of wheels and gears and rivets, spinning and turning effortlessly —if one piece is missing, we can’t properly function. Finding replacements and re-rigging our routine is our first step to a successful deployment. Realigning the hndassort and swpassort (the legs on the face of the clock… and yes I actually researched the correct terminology) is what we’re focusing on this week. Day by day, time will continue to tick-tock until we can reunite as a whole family.
Until then, we carry on.