Last night I couldn't sleep. Nothing new. As usual, I was thinking of Keith. I was thinking of what a good man he is, full of the best kind of pride a man can have; the kind that is expressed in taking excellent care of his family.
I was thinking about this and joy and gratitude simply flooded through me. Suddenly, I wanted nothing more than to tell him, to tell him how much it meant to be able to count on him, to be his. Not that I haven't before, but I just needed to say it right then.
And the phone rang.
"I was just praying for you to call!" I exclaimed in wonder.
"I have some good news," he said, and tingles went racing up my spine.
His 1st sergeant has recommended him for a slot open for a staff sergeant on the advance party. If he gets it, he will be home much sooner than I have ever thought to hope for.
"So I thought that was kinda neat," he finished up, humble.
"Kinda neat?" I exclaimed. "It's the best news we've had all year!!"
He couldn't talk long, he was running out of minutes. After he rang off, I lay in bed while excitement slowly flooded my entire body, from my feet to the top of my head. I simply had to squeeze something, so I squeezed his pillow. Poor neglected pillow; finally getting some attention.
Before getting that call, for the past week or so I'd been sitting in this little bubble. I knew he would be coming home, but I wasn't feeling it. I felt numb, along with a bad case of the writer's block. I was just waiting it out.
It was as if I had been just trudging along, one foot in front of the other. When he called, it was as though I lifted my head for the first time in a long time and the change of perspective took my breath away. We are so close. He will come home some time next month. And even if he does not get the slot, he is still only weeks away. Just weeks.
I feel like a newly wed. I feel like I should be registering for things, so we can set up house.
"I'll take a week off when you first get back," I was telling him earlier. I had been silently worrying about my job and what we would do about it when he got back. I decided it was time to bring it up.
"And then go I'll go back to work until block leave, and then take off all of block leave. After which I probably won't have a job," I finished up dryly.
"You won't need it," Keith said easily. "You'll be busy packing up, organizing the house and working on your writing."
Like wow. (Yes, I watched Scooby doo as a child.) I won't need my job. 'Cause I have a household. And my writing. And getting pregnant. Yeah. I foresee investing a lot of time in the pursuit of the last goal. I think that's a definite priority.
I've never not supported myself. I've sometimes had help, but I've always pulled my weight. I've never before just let go and completely fallen back onto someone else.
It's a good thing we've had plenty of practise in developing good communication techniques during this deployment. Spending "our" money is a very different thing from spending my money. From here on out there won't be any more my money.
This is a major reality shift; Keith has had to remind me many times to call the money he makes "ours." He works so hard for it, its difficult for me to justify spending it on something frivolous. I mean, he literally risks his life for that paycheck.
God, I love my husband. I love the way he plans so carefully and realistically, and then follows through. He has a generous and loving heart; he is true blue. I love all his rough edges, his penchant for giving orders, his bloody stubborn mindedness.
I love his optimism and rock steady confidence. It took a long time for me to recognize true confidence as opposed to arrogance. Only a truly confident man can immediately recognize when he's lost an argument and admit it. Keith does that. I love that about him. He won't stubbornly go on, just for the sake of winning. He doesn't need to win, he doesn't need to brag or show off, though he does. And I love that too. Oh what the hell, I just love everything about him.
I was looking at the game I bought him yesterday and a little shiver went through me, thinking of how soon he will be here, playing that game with the speaker system so loud the walls will vibrate. He will refuse to read the instructions. He will blame it on the game if consequently he makes a few errors at first.
He will want me right beside him, as his wing man; I watch out for the snipers and help come up with strategy. I will work out a compromise whereby he goes to bed earlier than he wanted to and I watch more game that I'd really like. He will beg me to stay up later than we agreed to and I probably will.
He is going to be home, this really will come to an end. I won't have to write about deployment any more. I'm bored writing about deployment. I'm tired of talking about memories. I want the real thing!
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