South America – Day 121

I finally talked to Derick last night.  When I got out of church yesterday and in the car to go home, I saw that I missed a call from him and I was so sad.  I have been pretty weepy this weekend.  I think partly because I miss Derick but also because I have been holding a crying baby for the last 4 or 5 days.  And maybe a little because I don’t have much Christmas shopping done.  Actually up til Saturday I pretty much had no shopping done.  It was so good to hear his voice though!  He can’t really tell me what he’s doing.  He did say that the local children come to the job sight to try to talk to the Americans in English.  We only talked for about 15 minutes or so, but that phone call just changed my attitude for the whole day!  It was actually better to talk to him in the evening, rather than the morning  because he got to say hi to the kids too.  The kids weren’t available in the morning. 

Friday night I went to an ugly Christmas sweater party at a friend’s house.  I hadn’t laughed so hard in a long time!  I left all of my kids with my mom and drove to Tremont, in the snow, alone.  It was so good to get out and just be with friends!  We had a white elephant gift exchange and my gift was the talk of the exchange.  There were gifts like an old punching bag, giant sized tighty whiteys, mini badminton, and a fireplace video so you can pretend that your tv is actually a fireplace.  I, however, brought a box of condoms.  I have had this box of Trojan sitting around my house for a good year, untouched for obvious reasons.  I don’t know what possessed me to use it as a gift, but I did.  I was the only one at the party that didn’t have a date.  By date, I mean a spouse with them.  Anyway, it got a pretty good laugh and people were talking about it for the rest of the night, and even at church yesterday morning.  I’m sure that no one expected a gift like that to come from me. 

Yesterday my sister asked if she and her family could come over for dinner.  I love cooking and I love having company, especially right now.  Sometimes I want to cook a good meal and it just seems pointless.  Kids would just as soon have hotdogs and mac n cheese, and they’d probably eat it better too.  I love cooking though.  I love creating something to enjoy with all of your senses, especially smell and taste.  (Sight is good too!  Its always exciting when what you are eating looks pretty!)  I love it, too, that Derick loves to cook.  It makes it, either, lots of fun in the kitchen or a big fight in the kitchen.  Actually, during the first year of our marriage it was more of a fight in the kitchen.  Kind of a survival of the fittest.  I won, simply because I do 90% of the cooking. (100% right now.)  But, I did learn that he doesn’t make food, or chop vegetables or boil water wrong, he just does it different than me.  And I have come to welcome (and now miss) his help.  So, today I am cooking for Carrie and her family. 

This is the first time I really feel alone during the holidays.  After my disastrous Thanksgiving, I’m not exactly looking forward to Christmas parties.  Yesterday, after I missed Derick’s call, I simply had no motivation to do anything.  I had already been weepy most of the weekend because of my sick baby.  I think I was just totally depleated.  I had nothing left to give to my family.  It took all the energy I had just to make egg sandwiches for dinner, so the kids had something besides cereal to eat.  Two things yesterday made a difference in turning my attitude around.  The first, obviously, was the call from Derick.  It is amazing how being separated changes my perspective.  I appreciate every minute that I get to talk to him right now.  And I pray that sometime while he is at this new location, they will get to use Skype.   I feel like I’ve been spoiled up to this point because I’ve gotten to talk to him for at least 5 minutes almost everyday.  Now it appears that its gonna be more like once a week or so.  I appreciate the call once a week, though, because I know it could be a lot less often than that.  The difference is that I have to learn to function more like a single parent right now, because he’s not available to get his opinion of things. 

The other thing that changed my day is a facebook message from a friend that said she and her family are in town and wanted to stop by today for a visit.  I haven’t seen them in probably 8 years.  And we have never met each others kids.  Too bad Derick is gone and can’t meet them.  Oh well, we’ll just have to plan a road trip to visit them after he gets back.  Anyway, like I said before, I love having visitors.  I like having, even unexpected visitors (as long as they don’t mind the mess that is my house.)  So, I stayed up last night to clean my house.  It was so good to get up to that this morning… a fresh pot of coffee, a clean kitchen and company coming in a couple of hours.  It does wonders for my state of mind.

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