For me, that means staring at a blank document, wondering what to write, knowing but then wondering how and if I should. But I force my fingers to type because, when I do, inevitably my feelings start pouring out. So here it is:
This week has been a little lonely.
Lonely is how I have felt often since moving to Florida. But this week the emotion stung sharper since my Coast Guard husband is underway. It's his second time getting underway here, on his boat in St. Petersburg, but the first time only lasted a couple days due to engine trouble. This time the boat is working fine. He's been gone since Monday and won't be coming back for a few more days.
Back in San Diego, when we started dating, GT was working in a land job, so I haven't had much experience with him getting underway. He was temporarily assigned to a boat for about two months last summer, but it didn't take him from home more than once, maybe twice, and not for long. He was in Charleston, South Carolina, for six weeks last fall, training to become a boarding officer. He missed our two-year dating anniversary (Oct. 29) but was back just in time for Thanksgiving. At the time I thankfully had a job to distract me from his absence, not to mention I was in the throes of planning a wedding.
It's something I have to get used to, him being gone from time to time. That's the life of a military wife. I know I have it easy, too. Some people's spouses are gone for months, a year, at a time. Later in his career, GT may be gone for a month or two or three, depending on the boat. I don't even want to think about what it will be like when we have kids. But I'm not going to apologize or minimize my feelings. I'm lonely. Right now. And it's not just because he is underway. The emotion is most certainly compounded by my current jobless and friendless state.
GT was able to call me this morning on a break. When he told me he wouldn't be home for three more days, I felt tears threatening to fall. I felt stupid; stupid for being so emotional. He said he and the crew would have liberty tonight and tomorrow, and that they were going to go out to blow off some steam. Jealousy crept in, mixing with loneliness. I proceeded to tell him how I got ready yesterday—put on makeup, and clothes you can't sleep in—to go pay a bill he forgot to take care of before he left, and when I got in my car I noticed a warning light glowing on the dash. The low-tire-pressure light. I got out, checked the tires and the light was right, all four looked saggy, in my non-expert opinion. Normally, I'd risk it since I just had to drive five minutes down the road but then it occurred to me: If my tire does blow and I get stuck on the side of the road with a flat, then what? I have no friends, no family, to call to come help me. So I turned the engine off. Now, staying in the apartment wasn't a choice. I was stuck.
Yep, I'm an expert at making myself feel more lonely.
Anyway, I've been trying to keep my mind and body busy, to pass the time productively, but my spirits are still a little low—like my tires. I've always be a firm believer that to be happy you have to actively choose joy. That you are responsible for your own happiness.
But man, choosing joy can be hard work to do.