Happy to have this guest post by Megan! Want to write a guest post for Soldier’s Wife, Crazy Life? Please email me at Julie@soldierswifecrazylife.com and let me know! I take pieces on anything milspouse related, from deployment tips to duty station review.
The anxiety of a Military Spouse when deployment comes to an end
If you have ever experienced an anxiety attack you will know exactly what I’m talking about. If you’re a military spouse, you will get it even more. Anxiety has a crazy way of messing with your head and your emotions. Before you know it, the anxiety has taken over your entire being and leaves you emotionally and physically exhausted.
I can remember when my husband first deployed; the anxiety was taking over every ounce of my being. I couldn’t think about anything else. I couldn’t sleep.
Every time I looked at my husband I wanted to cry or throw up. It was like I couldn’t breathe. I wanted to cling to him. I wanted him to cling to me.
I didn’t want him to go. I tried my very best to understand the mission first and it was his duty. But a selfish part of me wanted to throw myself on the floor kicking and screaming.
I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, the morning he left I didn’t shed one tear. The anxiety I had felt for months suddenly went away. I stood there until the buses drove off and waited.
I took a moment to myself standing in the empty parking lot in the cold. I waited for the tears to come. I waited for the anxiety panic attack to kick in. I was prepared for it. But it never did. I got in the car and talked to my dad all the way home and not once shed a tear.
I was beginning to think something was wrong with me. I got home, drank coffee, and got the kids off to school. I just kept waiting to feel something. Then it hit me.
I walked into our bedroom and looked at our unmade bed and everything I was waiting to hit me did. I fell to the floor with my heart aching an unbearable pain. I couldn’t breathe and I couldn’t stand up.
I sat on the floor sobbing for what seemed like hours but, it was minutes. I reminded myself what I had promised my husband; no matter what I would keep going. So, I got up, wiped my tears, and slowly got dressed for work. I just kept telling myself “you promised him to live your life, to keep going, to take care of our family, and to never quit”. So, I didn’t.
Now I won’t lie. There have been many times during this deployment that I have cried. Either out of anger, feeling defeated, being scared, being lonely, or just happy tears.
However, I will say for the most part I took all those emotions and shoved them deep down in the pit of my stomach, and refused to let them come up. Any time I started feeling in the feel goods I would stop myself. “Remember Megan, you promised him to keep going”. So, I kept going no matter what.
Now we are so close to being done. I texted my husband today and told him it was almost unreal. I haven’t allowed myself to think about him coming home for so long. I haven’t let myself count days or think about months.
Now that we are here, all the emotions I had been shoving down are all crashing into me at once. I am scared. I’m excited. I am overwhelmed.
There are so many questions constantly going through my head. What if he doesn’t want me anymore? What if we have both changed so much, we no longer connect?
What will the sex be like? What are his expectations? What are mine? So many questions and no answers. It’s terrifying to think about.
Anytime I start to think about it I tear up and start to cry. I see the Facebook posts and want to cry. I open the boxes full of his clothes and start to cry.
I look around at my messy house and think about everything that needs to be done to prepare for him to come and that really makes me want to cry. My husband is somewhere on a plane coming home to our family and I just can’t wrap my head around it.
It’s been so long since I’ve seen him, touched him, and smelled him. To think about it my heart wants to explode. And the anxiety gets higher and higher.
I try to control it but with every day I can feel the anxiety growing more and more. When will it end? The day before I pick him up? The minute I see him? I don’t know.
I guess this will be a 2-part post. Right now, I can only write about how I feel as the deployment is coming to an end. Just my thoughts and feelings right now. Once we get to welcome him home and settle into a new normal, I can write about if I was right or wrong.
I will have a better understanding of how all this works. I hope I get to write something wonderful and picture-perfect. I hope my anxiety will calm down long enough for me to enjoy planning him coming home. Until then, I will just write about what I know. So, I will leave this as; “to be continued” …………
My name is Megan Davis. I have a full-time paying job and volunteer jobs that I love. I currently work as a Personnel Supervisor at Westaff where I match people in my community looking for jobs with companies looking for workers. I volunteer as the Family Readiness Group Leader for the 2-108 CAV Squadron in Shreveport. I work with Military Spouse Advocacy Network (MSAN) mentoring other National Guard Spouses. Following these passions, I was recognized as the 2020-2021 Louisiana National Guard Spouse of the Year. I love helping people, specifically military spouses. One of my main goals is to make sure military spouses know they are not alone when trying to navigate through the military world. I want to help give them the courage to speak out and help build a support system for them so they can make it through all the crazy things the military life throws at us. I am also a student at the University of Louisiana at Monroe for my bachelor’s degree in risk management. Graduating from ULM has been my biggest goal for years and I am proud to say I am almost there.