The Deployment: The End

by Koko on April 26, 2012 · 16 comments

in Army, Deployment

Q was deployed for 353 days.

50 weeks.

11 1/2 months.

He missed his birthday, my birthday, our anniversary, Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Years and Valentine’s Day.

There were times we didn’t talk for 2 weeks and others when we talked multiple times a day.

We fought.  I cried. A lot. We had to redefine our relationship. We were no longer just long distance. We were long distance and one of us was putting their life on the line every day and I literally did not know how to deal with it. I complained that he didn’t call. He complained that I didn’t understand. I felt left out of his world and he felt left out of mine. As much as I wanted to know about what he was doing, I actually didn’t want to know. My way of processing Q being at war was to pretend he wasn’t.

My coping mechanisms? Spend more time with friends and family. Work more. Don’t think about war or guns or killing. He got upset that I kept living my life without him. I was upset he wasn’t living his life by my side.

This year was the hardest year of my life. My best friend, support system, and the person I call for every little problem was not there. I needed to grow up. I had to be less selfish. I had to put someone else before me. I had to solve problems on my own. I had to face reality and not hide from it.

The week before Q got home, I was scared. Had we both become different people during the time apart? Would he step off the plane and still be madly in love with me? Would I look into his eyes and know he was still my one?

But one hug, one whisper of “I love you,” one kiss sealed it. Every bad feeling washed away and was replaced with that “oh yes, this is so right and this is what I’ve been waiting for” feeling. Holding his hand, looking into his eyes, kissing him made it right.

We both learned a lot about ourselves during the year we spent apart. We each found things in ourselves that made us stronger and better people. We both became better partners to each other. We listen more, we understand more, we are more compassionate towards the other. We know that our time together is sacred and should not be wasted fighting. We treasure each moment we have. We learn to love the little things even more. We appreciate each other.

There will be more deployments. There will be more months apart. But if we both come out of those years like we did this one, I can only imagine our relationship growing stronger each time.


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Heather April 28, 2012 at 12:06 am

pretty much speechless…so proud of your guys. You made it! Looking forward to seeing you soon…xoxo
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Megan - Newly Wife April 27, 2012 at 7:17 am

Yay! You made it! Also, thanks for sharing this sweet post with us — the pretty and the not so pretty. So excited for you as you two get to be together in Alaska very soon!
Megan – Newly Wife recently posted..On Loving My ChildrenMy Profile

Tina April 27, 2012 at 4:48 am

just beautiful ko! I’m so grateful that you’re sharing this part of your life, it’s so touching and I love feeling like I’m part of it- I love you and am so happy you and q have so much love!

Liz @ Blog is the New Black April 27, 2012 at 4:30 am

I just got teary eyed reading this! YAY for being together at last. And I think I have a crush on Q- he is adorable! (Don’t tell my fiance!)
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Stephanie Howell April 27, 2012 at 4:29 am

beautiful. so glad he’s home.xo

Jackie April 26, 2012 at 11:30 pm

holy cow, what a beautiful post. Glad he’s finally home 🙂 enjoy your time catching up!

Vanessa April 26, 2012 at 10:53 pm

Wow. You worded this so amazing. It is such a great feeling when we hold our soldiers again. Im in the middle of our second deployment. I miss him more now than ever. I am so proud of him and it is so hard at times but so worth it when it is all over. Stay strong 🙂

Ninfa DePalma April 26, 2012 at 8:34 pm

KOKO, your blog has given me such memories of all the separations that I lived through in the 27 years that I was a Military spouse. I am so proud of how you have realized that you are a stronger more compassionate individual for living through the last 11 and 1/2 months! As for best friends I found out a LONG time that there really isn’t such a thing, yes you have your girl friends and pals but you learn that you can only count on you and YOU DID!!!

I wish you and Q much love and happiness in the years to come.

Jessi April 26, 2012 at 7:59 pm

You Army ladies are tough tough tough!! My husband deployed a lot with the Marines, but never for more than 7 months. I cannot imagine him gone for an entire year! I’m so glad to hear that you all are back together, safe and sound. And yes! You are so right that if you allow it and have the right attitude, each deployment can make your relationship stronger and make you stronger!
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realchic April 26, 2012 at 7:39 pm

OH boy this made me so teary.. & made me think also.. I wish the best & happiness for you both

Thomas Bähler April 26, 2012 at 7:39 pm

Well said Koko…Quincy is a fortunate man…and you are a fortunate woman…

Your love for each other is a deep river…it brings forth life…


Gaby April 26, 2012 at 7:30 pm

you two are seriously the cutest couple ever!! so happy for u both 🙂
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Bob Lang April 27, 2012 at 12:45 am

I haven’t seen Quincy since the early ’90s in Pacific Palisades — he and my son, Chas,were toddlers and pre-schoolers together — but that face is the same Quincy! I’ve stayed in touch with his Dad over the years, so knew he was in Afghanistan. We’re all thankful for his safe return, and happy for his relationship with such a caring and understanding woman. Chas’s partner is a nurse/LT in the Australian army, with six months to go in a two-year enlistment, so we know what long separations from loved ones mean — but we have not had the war zone posting you have had to endure. Please tell Q we’re thinking of him. Call if you eve get to Oz!
Bob Lang

Koko April 28, 2012 at 7:04 pm

Bob, I read this to Quincy, he was so happy to hear from you and about Chas. We will definitely let you know if we head down under anytime soon! Thanks for stopping by!

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