It’s week 1.
It’s a pretty big deal. I have been waiting for this. I have been patient. I have prepared and daydreamed and planned. It’s go time!
Ok, so that sounds SUPER dramatic but big life changes ARE dramatic.... so it’s fitting. And I am EXCITED!!!
I am also terrified... I’ll tell you why...
My son went back to school this week. It’s the first time he’s been anywhere but home full time, really. And while it is sad and I definitely have the mom feels about it, I am also really looking forward to what the future has in store!
For 6 years I have been a stay at home mom. And I LOVED spending that time with my son. Honestly, he’s one of the most unique, creative, hilarious, loving little beings I know. In that 6 years, I helped shape him. I helped in teaching him so many things and, in turn, he taught me things as well.
The truth is, I never saw myself as a stay at home mom. I barely saw myself as a mom at all. I wasn’t one of those little girls who dreamed of being married or having babies. That just seemed like such a far away thing that it seemed almost absurd when it came time to consider the possibility of those things happening. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t change any of it. I love my husband, I love my son, and I love being the wife and mom. But when it came time to step into the stay at home mom role, it was something I did because it’s what worked for our family at the time. I did it out of love for both my son and husband.... but it did not come naturally to me like it seemed to with some moms.
Being a military family and being bumped around the country means it’s rare to have family close by to help. My husband was on the trajectory to becoming a pilot with the Canadian Air Force which was an extremely long and difficult road so a lot of the parenting and household responsibilities fell on me. My husband is every bit as much a parent as me (my husband and son have a wonderful bond and relationship) but the reality of our situation was that while he was at school/work/training, I was holding it down at home. Which meant that I had less of myself to give to other areas and had to shelf a few things for a while.
One of those things was art. I didn’t entirely shelf it - anyone who is an artist will tell you that’s next to impossible as it’s essentially part of our DNA. But I did have to slow it way down and scale back on how much of myself I was able to lend to it. To say it was a personal struggle is quite an understatement. It was like pressing the brakes to the floor when you’re going full speed. And I think that’s something a lot of new moms experience but don’t publicly express because our society tends to shun anyone who doesn’t love every aspect of motherhood. I struggled with the shift from being my own person and having the time I needed to do the things I wanted to losing quite a bit of autonomy because every ounce of me was needed by this tiny human. It was startling and it took a minute to adjust. I loved the time I had with him and recognized it was an experience that I’d never be able to get back. But, simultaneously, I can’t hide my excitement at gaining this little piece of myself back.
This week is my first full week back at it. It is equal parts thrilling and terrifying! Getting back to my art full time is something I’ve dreamt of and I’ve made plans and laid the ground work to prepare myself for when the time came again. But it is ALL. ON. ME. And THAT is extremely daunting to think about! It’s exciting to have the freedom but I am the one who has to come up with the plans for that day, that week, that month, that year. I have to keep myself organized and motivated. I have to maintain a healthy balance between work and home life while working from the basement of my home. I am ultimately responsible for every success and every failure. Add to that that there is no limit or ceiling to how big this could become, that I’m essentially standing on a rock in the middle of an ocean of possibilities and opportunities and it’s all on me to steer the ship and keep it afloat while hoisting all of the possibilities and opportunities, within reach, aboard.... my anxiety doesn’t like this AT ALL! Lol! I have to continuously fight my own self doubts and fears. It’s scary. It feels a little lonely despite having SO much support. But I’m ready to dive head first into this choose-your-own-adventure. I’m ready to see what’s next and what kinds of things I can make happen. I’m excited for myself, I’m excited to show this to my son, and I’m excited to fill this new role for our family!
Last night, after I had completed my first day of this new adventure, I was talking to my husband and I felt tears start to prick my eyes. I was (and am) so scared of the unknown —This could ALL go horribly wrong, you know. Do I REALLY have what it takes to make this happen? What if I fail? — But there was also this immense sense of pride. I had been waiting so long for this opportunity. So I blazed into my first day and, if you will, kicked it’s ass! I woke up that morning, made the plans, and followed them through. I did that. Me. I am DOING this!
I am excited!
I am ready!
I am terrified!
But watch me go!!!
(Look mom, no hands!!)
I heard my husbands phone ring and then a muffled and brief conversation with whoever was on the other end. I then heard his footsteps on the basement stairs and looked up to see what he had to say. “I’m going”, he said. And then he was collecting his gear, putting on his uniform, and walking out the door for work, all within a half hour period of time.
I can’t say where he’s going.
I don’t know exactly how long he’s gone for.
I don’t know what his mission is.
I don’t know when I’ll see him next.
My husband is a Search and Rescue (SAR) pilot with the Canadian military and life is a little chaotic.
I will preface all of this by saying I KNOW how important his job is. I know what his job is about and that when he gets a callout it’s because someone is in some kind of trouble somewhere and needs serious help. This is what we all signed on for. I do NOT put the inconvenience of our household above the safety and well being of other people - I’m proud of all of the SAR teams for what they do and recognize the significance. I am only using my blog to portray my personal feelings and experiences as I recognize it’s unique and this lifestyle does create some challenges on the homefront.
This mission is my husbands first real callout. He’s spent a lot of time away from us in the last couple years but this is the first time he’s going on a mission for his job instead of just doing the training. The only thing I know is that he was told to pack for 3-4 days....what I know of the military is that 3-4 days could mean multiple weeks potentially and nothing is for certain....
I have been a military spouse for the past 15 years now. I know to expect the unexpected. In saying that, though, it doesn’t make the unexpected any easier to swallow, especially as a parent. It just means you generally know what to do when it happens. Generally. Or you get really good at your poker face at least. But it’s still tough.
This week, in particular, is a week that I wish I had the extra support from my person. Things I wish I didn’t have to do alone I now have no choice. And it happened in a matter of a half hour. I didn’t even have time to realize or process how everything that was planned for this week has now changed in an instant. And when you’re thrown into solo-parenting in a moments notice, it makes your head spin a bit. All of the jobs are now my jobs and my jobs alone..... and I don’t know for how long. My husband was a blur, trying to make sure he had all of his things together..... and then he was gone. And we were still here......Putting away the extra suitcase he took out or the shoes he left by the table, trying to mentally piece the coming days together without him.
So, the new plan is to hunker down, hold it all together, wait for news, do what needs to be done. Wash, rinse, repeat. I will do my best here while he is off doing his best with his crew in whatever their call ends up being. The inconvenience to our family life, big picture, means very little in comparison to the danger others may be facing in order to require the SAR teams help. I tell myself this over and over. I try my best to be gracious about it. But my heart doesn’t care so much about grace, especially when I’m wiping away a little boys tears and trying to make everything ok for him.
This life is really tough sometimes. Never boring but definitely tough.
With that being said, I hope, more than anything, that my husband and his crew stay safe and that the outcome of their mission has a positive end, whatever it is they’ll be doing. I hope they have smooth flights, do what needs to be done, and can come home soon.
Safe travels. ❤️
Sometimes I have a lot to say.
And sometimes I have nothing to say at all.
The conundrum of an extroverted introvert I guess.
But when I do have things to say I shall put them here. And probably on Facebook....
A thing that might be good to know about me is that I have opinions. On a lot of things. And sometimes the pull is so strong to share them that fighting it feels wrong. I don’t share what I share because I’m ego centric, despite the belief of some (usually those who disagree). I share what I share because I feel like I HAVE to morally or like it’s some contract I signed for the agreement of the human experience. And sometimes I share things despite the fact that I know other people won’t like what I say.
My goal is not to be liked by everyone. That’s ridiculous.
Instead, my goal is to love, and help create a world I can proudly hand off to my son.... even if my small part is through sharing my voice - whether it be through my artwork or my thoughts and feelings. I do good when I can. I try to own and apologize for my mistakes. I’m always growing and changing, as we all should.
I’m an empath with some hardline boundaries, implemented through personal experience and growth. I love and protect fiercely.
I am a far cry from perfect. But I try. I wake up everyday and I make efforts. I do the work. And then I wake the next day and do the same. Sometimes in a larger capacity.... sometimes less.
And I’m here to share all of this with you. Because maybe what I’ve been through or am going through might help you with something you’ve been through or are going through. Maybe my perspective could help you change yours. Maybe you just need a laugh.... and maybe I can provide that for you - life is really funny if you’re paying attention.... or if you’re jaded just enough to be the proud owner of a dark and twisted sense of humour.
Maybe I’m just talking loudly into the void.... but maybe you’re out there. And if you are.... I see you ❤️