Uncategorized

Sin vs UTI’s

In Younglife, we use the picture of lowercase “s” and capital “S” to describe sin. “s-in” would be what most people consider sin to be, such as sex before marriage, drugs, drunkenness, adultery, murder, stealing, and so on. “S-in” is a heart turned away from God. When we do “bad” things, those are just symptoms of a heart that is turned away from God. So basically, “s-in” is a sneeze, cough, or itch, and “S-in” is a virus, infection, or disease. You can’t just stop “s-inning” without ending your “S-in”. Sure you can go to AA meetings, return what was stolen, or go to marriage counseling, but other “s-ins” will keep popping up until you turn your heart back to God.

To break it down…first, you Sin, then you sin. So, the actual Sin is turning your heart away from God. Then we reveal all of the symptoms of our broken heart by sinning.

Try explaining that to Teenagers in 12 minutes or less!

More breaking down of it?
Sure, I can do that for you!

“s-in” hurts other people; family, friends, teachers, neighbors
“S-in” hurts you and your relationship with God.

I hope this helps you to explain sin to someone who might not fully understand it yet. But, it’s been a heart-heavy day, so I need to move on to something lighter…like urine. ((Ew…did she just say urine? Yes, yes she did.))

So, for the past couple of months, I thought that I had something seriously wrong with my bladder, but it turns out it was just a UTI ((Come on, Cathi…tmi, seriously)). The only reason I am coming out of the closet about this is because military wives need to be aware of the silent killer, which is the UTI. If your um….er…marital bliss is interrupted often due to the military stealing your man away all the time, then you need to remember to protect your lady stuff! …okay, maybe I shouldn’t say lady stuff, but what would you call it to be discreet? I can’t cough and point down there. This is a blog, folks. Plus, this is me, and I tend to be…como se dice…real? So, listen girls…if your man is gone for a long time and home for a short time, then do yourself a favor and head over to Rite Aid and grab a bottle of Cystex. 1 tablespoon a day keeps the UTI away! I forgot about it when my husband visited over the Summer, and I paid for it by running to the bathroom ever 5 minutes.

What did we learn tonight?
Sin is bigger than sin and buy Cystex or pee your pants.
Cathi-Out

20130909-230435.jpg

Uncategorized

Married–Living Apart–Stress–Arguments–and an Apology

My husband returned from deployment in May, but has been living in a different state while awaiting orders to PCS. Living apart for over a year and a half has been really taking a toll on the whole family. We’re in this for the long haul, but our current situation is just so frustrating! We’ve gotten in 2 stress-induced arguments in the past week, and we are the type of couple who rarely argues. We’re compensating for each other’s absences, and that’s messing with the natural order of our lives. The “why” of the arguments is easy to diagnose, but the “what” that’s going to come out of them…that’s TBD. We need to not let these arguments become bigger than we can handle apart, so after sleeping on it last night, I decided to try to end this one through creative and cheesy writing:

Apology Poem

How do I love thee?
Let me count the ways:
The dimple on your cheek
On your hairless face,
The way that you walk,
With Your flat-footed swagger,
Your spyware knowledge–
My human defragger.
Your little cheat codes,
Like Percent temp percent,
You know it all,
But still sometimes pretend.
The games that you play
To annoy me on purpose,
Put frustration away,
Bringing laughs to the surface.
The stress that we’re facing
Is not with each other,
But it’s safe to put blame
On the father or mother.
Some just don’t get it,
But we get what we’ve got.
We get it the best,
Because we get what we’re not.
What we aren’t is together,
That’s obviously so.
What we are is forever,
So let’s let this fight go.
I’ll say it first,
Since you said it last,
I’m sorry, dear husband,
Let’s put this one in the past.

Uncategorized

64 weeks, and this chick be cray cray

20130324-234554.jpg

Oh. My. Gosh. I saw this while scrolling through Pinterest, and I thought, “This cannot be real.” So, then I looked it up, and girls really do this! I’m blessed in my life, and I’m very content with what God has called me to be as a military wife, but I would never chase after a life where I am parenting, taking care of a house, and spending my nights alone. I wouldn’t chase after a life where I worry if the next time I speak to my husband might be my last. I wouldn’t chase after a life where I know every single detail of my husband’s funeral because there might be one within the upcoming year. I wouldn’t chase after a life where I have to hold my child tight in the middle of the night after a nightmare about his Daddy being killed. I wouldn’t chase after a life where my husband would go off to war every few years and come back a little different, a little tougher, a little more distant, and a little less himself every time. I wouldn’t chase after a life of unrequited love for the sole benefit of a man who looks hot in his uniform.

I fell in love with my husband, not the military, and not his uniform. They hardly ever wear the dress uniform. I can actually count, on one hand, the amount of times my husband has worn his dress blues. One of those times was for his DA photo, which will end up being framed and surrounded by flowers if he does end up with that funeral this year. Seeing him in it is quite attractive, but the reality of what the uniform represents – duty, honor, sacrifice…possibly death – that is anything but hot.

I’ve met lots of military men in the past 8 years, and some were good guys, some were bad guys. You can’t categorize the military men as loving them all, as if they are all one specific type of person. To go out of the way to find a military man to marry and be open to parading outside of the base is the same as sitting outside of a hospital, hoping to marry a doctor. It’s absurd. I’m proud of what my husband does, but it’s not because of his uniform. It’s because of how he does his job. I’m proud of the man that he is, not the rank that precedes his name. I married my husband, not the military. The military is just the duty that came along with my calling to be my husband’s wife.

Unmarried ladies…please, don’t subject yourself to this type of desperation! This is no life you want to just throw yourself into because you’re tired of waiting around for Mr. Right! If you’re tired of waiting now, then this is absolutely not the piece of pie you’re looking to take a bite out of. This is a life built on waiting. All a military wife does is wait and figure out how to make the waiting feel like less of a wait. And it’s not just about you who is waiting for him to return, to call, or to write either. It’s about his children, his siblings, his parents, his grandparents, his aunts, his uncles, his friends, his neighbors. You have to put your own pain aside to cater to their feelings, as well. Because it’s you who keeps those relationships going for him while he is away. Screw them up, and you’ll lose even more of your husband, rather than gaining more of him for yourself, when he comes home.

This life is all about sacrifice, and not the pretty kind that gets published in papers and decorated with medals. I’m talking about the ugly kind. The kind where you eat after the kids go to bed, because there’s nothing else to do when your husband has 24 hour duty at the singles’ barracks. Where you sit in your bathrobe all day, because you’re not going anywhere, and he’s not coming home any time soon, because he’s at an FTX for the next 2 weeks. The kind where you are never the Hero in your kids’ eyes, because you always have to be the disciplinarian, and you want to make sure that the children always view their father with respect and honor. The kind where you talk to the TV, and develop way too attached feelings toward the characters’ fake relationships, because you’re new on post, and you don’t have any close friends, well into the first year of PCSing. The kind where you cry yourself to sleep after realizing that it’s been over a week since you last heard from him down range, and you don’t know if your prayers for safety are 6 days too late or if the communication lines are just down.

Marrying a military man is not a fairy tale. It’s a story about faith, courage, fear, humility, and loneliness. You don’t choose this lifestyle. It chooses you. (Moreover, God chooses you for your husband, who happens to be a military man) If you’re out seeking it, then you are not fit for it. Anyone who says that they can do it is really proving that they cannot. The real women that are able to live this lifestyle are those that admit defeat before the journey even begins. The truth is that we absolutely cannot do it, but we do it anyway.

Also, BOOM.

Uncategorized

63 weeks and Date Night

A girlfriend made a post on Facebook this week about how she was insulted by a nosey shopper at the grocery store. Of course, in the moment, the shock of this man’s lack of tact left her without a good comeback during the appropriate comeback window of opportunity. However, she did think of a great return insult after the time had already passed. Such a response would’ve left the personal space intruder just as dumbfounded as the unsolicited counsel that he imposed on her otherwise pleasant shopping trip. Her synopsis of the whole ordeal: “Life is full of so many missed opportunities.”

I had one of those events occur this week. Someone who knows very little about the military, as well as very little about me, tried to console me in my distress of being married to a military man. She went on and on, having complete lack of experience on the subject, but in full control of shoving her foot deeper and deeper into her own mouth. I practiced my smile and nod technique very carefully, focusing mostly on my facial expressions. I tried to keep the “micro-expressions” at bay as she said things that were not only completely off base, but also insulting, hurtful, and a tad bit psychologically disturbing. I felt my head tilt to the side, my eyebrow lift, and my eyes grow wide as she spoke about a subject that is extremely sensitive to anyone that actually knows anything about it first-hand. I could’ve silenced her with my colorful rhetoric based on personal stories and only a mere partial comprehension on the issue, myself. In my head, I had a spaced out look on my face, wearing a sign in my eyes that read, “You have no idea what you’re talking about. You don’t know me. You don’t know my husband. You don’t know the military. And you don’t know this subject. Just stop. And please, please I beg of you, don’t talk about this with anyone else, ever again.” But in actuality, I had a partial, sympathizing grin plastered over my gritting teeth, and I was nodding to the beat of “Hey Soul Sister” which was playing ever so faintly in the background.

My girlfriend jokingly called them “missed opportunities,” but I like to refer to them as “grace opportunities.” It takes grace and tact that only years of being silenced can produce. In this lifestyle, we have no say-so. I don’t even know where I’m going to be living when the next season knocks at my door. I have no choice over it either. It doesn’t matter where the best school is, where the housing market is at its peak for buyers, or where I can find raw milk and a good, honest, local farming community. I can’t force my own perspective on the wounds of war onto my husband. I can’t tell him what he should do with his career. I can’t do anything to stop the funds from seeping out of the holes in the government’s military budget. I can’t start a petition to make people care about and help with my son’s permanent damage that this unpredictable, unstoppable deployment has inflicted on his fragile, “seven and three-quarters” year-old heart. There’s nothing I can do to change our circumstances, so I’m just quiet. I spent the first few years talking and trying to say everything. I’ve talked my voice raw in the past, and now I know the benefits of silence.

As I drove home, with the radio off, I played a whispering game with the boys. They played along, no questions asked. Then, after we pulled into the driveway, and I turned off the engine, we sat there completely quiet for a moment. No one could stop what happened next. Not that foot-in-mouth woman, not the nosey guy from the grocery store, not the neighbors, not a 5 star general, not the government, not even the president. The only one that could control the next few seconds was the Holy Spirit, and he was whispering gently in my ear. He counted down from 3, 2, 1 and I started to yell at the top of my lungs,

“AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!”

The boys shook their heads vigorously, waving their arms and wiggling their legs shouting and screaming,

“AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!”

Then silence again.
We each took a deep breath. I opened the door, helped my youngest out of his car seat, and we walked into the house talking in a normal tone about the plans for the evening,
“Take off your shoes, brush teeth, Jammies, and climb into bed. I’ll be right there to tuck you guys in.”

“…a time to be quiet and a time to speak.” -Ecclesiastes 3:7b

Activity #63: Date Night with my Son

My oldest son has been having a rough time getting back into routine since my husband left, and it’s been causing a lot of friction between the two of us these past couple of weeks. He has been super mouthy lately, and the back-talking has gotten out of control. I found myself constantly telling him not to do or say certain things, and the broken record feeling was driving me nuts. Finally, I thought I’d try something new. Instead of telling him what not to do and what he was grounded from doing. I decided to tell him what TO do. I know that I am raising someone’s husband, and I think that it’s high time he begin learning how to woo his future wife. Practice makes perfect, and I’d rather him practice chivalry than rolling his eyes and slamming his door. The teenage years are going to creep up before I know it, and now is the time to start teaching him the ropes of dating, the reasons for dating, and the rules for dating someone’s daughter. I told him a few basics, and said I’d be waiting in my room whenever he was ready to pick me up. He called his Nana for a few pointers, and when a friend stopped by, during my waiting-in-my-room time, he pulled her in for some help setting up.

11

112My son is almost 8 years old, and had his first date with his mom. I’d consider it a success! Next time, I’m going to teach him how to cook something for a date. We talked about why people date, and how to properly say goodnight to a girl. He walked me to my bedroom door, gave me a hug, and thanked me for joining him. I explained how he could get bonus points if he really liked the girl. He knows to 1) plan date number 2 before date number 1 ends, and 2) send her flowers the next day to let her know that you’re thinking about her. I know that with practice, he’ll be an excellent boyfriend and husband one day. But for today, I enjoyed watching my 7 year old play baseball with the neighbor boys, and yes, even fighting with his little brother. Until next week, send your crazy to me, since I’m going there anyway.

Uncategorized

62 Weeks and Homemade Peanut Butter

There are some wives out there who “wear” their husbands’ rank. They march around, as if they themselves are also enlisted. These women act tough, bark orders, and study AR’s and FM’s just for the purpose of looking like they know it all. This type of living is not for me. I don’t claim military rank or status. I’m actually quite a fan of wearing my hair down, wearing makeup, and PDA. I like being able to say what I want, when I want to, without fear of being “smoked” for it. I cannot, however, claim full civilian status.

Marriage is a 3-legged race. My left foot is in the civilian world and my right foot is tied to my husband’s left. Both of his feet walk in the military realm though, so half of me is walking in his world. Some husbands drag their wives, some wives drag their husbands, but essentially we military wives are living in both worlds in one way or another. Because of this, we stay up studying with our men for the promotion board. We have a meeting with the company commander to request better living quarters during advanced training for our NCO’s. We wash, massage, and care for the feet that get minimal escape from those god-awful boots. We polish every coin, hang every certificate, and press every uniform. We take pride in our soldiers’ accomplishments and feel every ounce of disappointment that they feel in their failures. We get excited when they get a hot shower down range, and we panic inside when there is any type of danger. This is us in their world. They wear the uniform, follow the orders, give the orders, and do the job. We shadow them, mimic their gestures out of flattery and habit, and we silently walk. We are ready and sturdy for them to lean on us, but it almost never happens. But, if at any moment they need it, we are ready. We chant, quieter than a whisper, “Please, just lean on me. Just lean a little bit. Come on…lean…come on. Just lean a little bit. Come on…come on…” But they don’t hear us, because all they hear is the shouting of their own voice blending in with hundreds of thousands of other warriors singing,

“WHEN I WAS BORN MY DADDY LEFT! left, right, left.
LATER ON MY MOMMA LEFT! left, right, left.
I GOT DEPLOYED MY WOMAN LEFT! left, right, left.
THE ARMY THE ONLY THING THAT’S LEFT! left, right, left.
COME ON! left, right, left.
LOUDER! left, right, left.
COVER! left, right, left.
AGAIN! left, right, left.”

Activity #62: Homemade Peanut Butter1362962431020

I put on a movie, and it took 2 hours to de-shell the peanuts.
I put on a movie, and it took 2 hours to de-shell the peanuts.
1 bag equals 1 jar
1 bag equals 1 jar
Food Processor for 5 minutes.
Food Processor for 5 minutes.
Boom. Done.
Boom. Done.

So, I bought a bunch of peanuts for my husband’s Guys’ Night when he was home, but they weren’t very popular. So, I decided to try making homemade peanut butter with the leftovers. Seriously…you should go do this right now! It’s delicious! I can’t imagine going back to store-bought ever again! It’s super easy, doesn’t have to be refrigerated, and it’ll go by a lot faster if you enlist the help of friends, kids, or your spouse.I’m going to try homemade nutella next! I can’t wait! Until next week, send your crazy to me, since I’m going there anyway!

Uncategorized

44 Weeks and Welcoming Strangers muahahaha

Top 10 Things NOT to say to a

Wife whose Husband is Deployed

“I guess you’re used to this by now…”

Yeah, that’d be a big fat NO.

“I wish I could get a break from My husband too.”

Well please, send him down to your nearest Military recruiter, and I’ll show him where to sign. Oh, you didn’t mean THAT type of break? Oh, okay. Shut your mouth, fool. Go spend time with your husband instead of complaining about him.

“I bet you’re enjoying all of this free time that you have.”

Free time? I have to pay a babysitter just to get a pap-smear. None of my time is free.

“Well, at least they pay him extra when he’s deployed.”

Oh, THERE’S the silver lining! Gosh, can’t believe I missed that!

“Woah! Girl, your lawn is out of control!”

Thanks for the tip. The half-a-dozen letters from the HOA didn’t really speak loud enough.

“Yeah, you should probably get that looked at by someone. I know all about it, and it’s not safe.”

–Slow blink followed by a fake smile.– Yup…probably should.

“Your kids have been acting super whiny lately.”

My kids have been acting like kids who are lonely, stressed, afraid, and missing their father. I’ve been trying to figure out how to handle it, and you’re definitely not helping any.

“I understand completely! My husband went away on a weekend conference once.”

Yeah, it’s basically the same thing.

“They should just bring all the troops home. We have no reason to be over there.”

Glad to know that the country that my husband is fighting for is filled with people who think he does nothing all day.

“So, what do you think of our president?”

Oh, you mean how he controls the weather? Cause, yeah, I’m pretty pissed about it! Seriously, can’t we just talk about football?

 

Activity #44: Scare Tactics! 

     Have you seen the show, Scare Tactics? If not, you should head over to youtube and check it out sometime. Hil-ar-i-ous! Inspired by this show, I decided to have my own Scare session the night before halloween.  I sent out a couple of text messages, bought some snacks from Publix (click here for an awesome coupon blogger), and gave my prankster kids a pre-scare pep-talk. I ordered the movie, The Strangers, put on a haunted house soundtrack, and let things flow naturally. It was legendary! Idan played along so well! My sister, her fiance, and my friend Jason T. did awesome at being my “strangers”. Right at the climax of the movie, they made noises outside of the house and then entered slowly, wearing masks and suits. The girls were screaming, furniture was moving, and they were fidgeting for their cell phones. By the time I turned the lights on, one girl was in fetal position on the floor and the rest of them were basically on top of each other.

(BTW, I made sure that no one had weapons before this started. If someone ever tried to scare me the way my team and I scared them…my always-loaded shot gun would’ve made a glorious debut.)

My cutesy snacks made it look innocent enough. 😉

add the creepy window with curtains opened…
a creepy door with a scary man about to walk in…
And BOOM! Scare of the year!

Idan did so well! He screamed when I told him to, and he was completely silent when I told him to be!

He wasn’t afraid. The flash made him make this face.
My Scare Buddies and Me. Good times.

If you ever try to do anything like this, please be sure that you know the people you are about to scare. Make sure there aren’t any weapons around, because this could very easily turn into a disaster. Don’t let the scare go for more than a minute or two, and make it borderline, “Is this real or fake?” You don’t want people thinking they’re really about to get whacked. That’s sick. As soon as someone says, “I’m calling 911,” that’s probably a good time to call it quits.

Until next week, send your crazy to me, since I’m going there anyway!