Most people probably view deployment as the absolute worst part of the military lifestyle and I get it. There’s nothing terribly easy about being separated from your loved one for months at a time. Trust me, I know. I’ve done it 4 times in 5 years. But in that time, I’ve learned a very valuable lesson.
In order to have any shred of happiness, you have to find the good in a bad situation and deployment is no exception. While it certainly seems difficult those first few days (or weeks), as you begin to settle into a deployment routine, a few highlights may start to emerge.
The Best Parts of Deployment
Are you really surprised by this one, especially coming from me? I love care packages and next to homecoming, they are truly the best part of deployment.
Having the entire bed to yourself
Well minus the space taken up by one wiener dog and one large GSP. Ok so I don’t actually get the bed to myself, but I have MORE of the bed to myself and after a while, I’ve stretched out to fill it. It feels a little luxurious, like when you’re in a hotel and sleep in a king instead of a queen bed. It’s like I’m a princess!
Watching whatever you want on TV
During deployment, my motto is “bring on ALL the cheesy movies”. I watch all my guilty pleasures with no guilt and it’s actually kind of delightful.
Only doing half the dishes/laundry/cleaning
One load of laundry a week versus three? One load of dishes a week versus five? Less clutter around the house? That sounds pretty dang good if you ask me! I like to use that extra time (and there is extra time) to hang out with friends, read for hours at a time and nap without feeling bad.
All the hot water!
I don’t know about y’all, but if I shower after my husband, there is significantly less hot water than if I shower before him. I think he relishes in long showers at home because he can’t when he’s away. Well when you have this much hair to wash, having a little extra hot H2O is pretty nice.
You know that one home maintenance task only your spouse remembers how to do? Or that one recipe that’s the only food your kids eat when they’re sick that you don’t make? Or the oddly specific knowledge your spouse has about a random topic?
Well odds are you’ll need all of the above at least once during a deployment because that’s just the way life works. For a moment, you’ll panic, but then you’ll realize that everyone is depending on you and something magical will happen. YOU’LL HANDLE IT. LIKE A BOSS. The feeling of success that comes after you tackle your first deployment crisis is phenomenal and gives you so much confidence moving forward.
But more than anything else, the best part of deployment is the reminder of how much you care for your loved one. I have truly found that absence makes the heart grow fonder and each time my husband comes home, it’s a bit like we’re dating all over again. We let little things go, reprioritize each other and remember that every moment counts.
Deployments are not easy by any stretch of the imagination, but they don’t have to be entirely negative. When you actively seek out the positive in any situation, you’ll naturally find more of it. If you’re going through a deployment right now, take a few moments to think about one or two highlights so far. Maybe they’re singular events (a fun night out or a raise at work) or maybe they’re more long term (you haven’t had to fold what feels like 400 military green t-shirts every weekend). No matter what the highlights are, write them down and add to your list periodically throughout the rest of deployment. I think you’ll be very surprised with just how many you come up with!Deployment tip: If you're going through a deployment right now, take a few moments to think about one or two highlights so far. No matter what they are, write them down and add to your list periodically throughout the rest of… Click To Tweet
What’s a perk of deployment for you?
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