I have been working on this open letter for weeks. I realized that I hadn’t posted really anything at all about my wonderful husband who is a huge inspiration to me as I ventured into blogging. He has been so supportive and I wanted to dedicate a post to him and to share with everyone how amazing he is. And I thought Valentine’s Day would be the perfect day to post it. Happy Valentine’s Day baby:
I don’t even know where to begin. I guess I started to write this letter to you just you could have something to look back on throughout the deployment to remind you of how I feel about you and how much I love you. I hope it brings a smile to your face whenever you read it. I love you.
Deployments are hard. For both of us. We hate being apart. Even when you are home we are always together, no matter if we are sitting on the couch watching tv or just running errands. I don’t think either of us feels whole without the other one.
There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t wish you were home. Even if we just sat and stared at each other all day. I know most weekends I get annoyed because I want to go DO something, but now I would give anything to do nothing with you. I guess that is one thing that deployment teaches you- to not take for granted those lazy days with each other.
Its silly but one of the things I miss is your smell. Not your “just ran 4 miles” smell. I could do without that one. But just your…smell. The day you left I walked into our bedroom and the smell of you hit me like a ton of bricks. And it broke my heart because I knew that one day that smell would be gone. And now it is. I can’t smell you anymore, and as crazy is that is, I hate it.
The worst time of day is the evening. For the first couple weeks I would finish putting Evelyn to bed and expect to hear the tv on. But it wasn’t. It was silent. The silence is deafening- its so loud when its silent because all I can hear are my own thoughts about how you’re not home. The normal household noises are no longer present. I don’t hear your car pull into the garage. I don’t hear the country music blaring from the stereo. I don’t hear football/basketball/baseball on the television. Its just quiet. And that hurts my ears and my heart.
I know I’ve told you this before but I fell in love with you all over again the day you became a daddy. Seeing you hold Evelyn and talk to her- it was amazing. It was so obvious how much you love her and how much you care about her from the moment she was born. My favorite memory of her birthday is right after she was put on my chest you said, “This is the best day of my life.” You weren’t talking to anyone and I’m not sure you even meant for it to be heard, but I heard you and my heart melted. I hate that you’re not here to see her grow. You used to work so hard to get her to “talk” and now she’s just started to laugh a little and I know if you were here you would do anything to get one little giggle from her.
And she misses you. Its so obvious. I didn’t think she would recognize that you were gone but she does. She sees your pictures every day in her “Daddy Book” and she hits the pages as we go through it. She doesn’t do that with any other book. And she stares at her Daddy Doll for minutes at a time, reaching out to touch it. I wish so much that I could give her the one thing she is yearning for- her daddy. It hurts to know that I can’t provide the comfort she needs from you. She just wants her daddy to come home to her, and I know you want to come home to her too.
I don’t resent you being over there though. I don’t like it and I worry and I’m lonely here on my own but I know its what you have to do. And I know its no cakewalk for you either. I wish I could provide you with some comfort while you’re away. I hope that maybe this letter provides a little bit of comfort for you.
We have grown so much as a couple over our years together. Our first deployment was hard and I was scared that this deployment would be even harder with a baby mixed in. But we have grown so much and learned so much about each other that things are easier this time around. It still sucks but its easier.
My favorite thing to think about is your homecoming. I picture it and day dream about it all the time. Your last homecoming was nothing like the ones you see on tv. It was just you, coming off a commercial airplane because we opted for you to fly home on our dime a week early rather than have another week on the ship. And I wouldn’t have had it any other way. But this time I am looking forward to having a military homecoming. I am looking forward to seeing you walk out in your uniform, me holding Evelyn in a little red, white, and blue dress, and a sign saying “Welcome Home, Daddy!” It makes me tear up just thinking about it.
Babe, I don’t know if I can put into words how much you mean to me.You are the love of my life. You always have been, I was just searching for you. Its funny to think about how things could have been so different if certain circumstances didn’t bring us together. I almost didn’t go to school where I did. You had the opportunity to choose another career besides the Marine Corps. I could have not walked into that bar that day. You could have not come into my restaurant the week before. God worked very hard to get us together and I thank Him for that every day because I don’t think any one is as lucky as us.
You make me feel whole, James. Without you here I feel an emptiness. Your laugh and your smile (which I am lucky enough to see in Evelyn every day) brings me so much joy. You are so driven and motivated and it makes you a great Marine. You put your family, us, first in every single situation. You provide for us and take care of us. You love us with every thing you have and its so obvious to any one who sees you.
I love everything about you, even the things that annoy me sometimes! I love when you randomly pull me in for a hug and a kiss. I love that you bring me flowers and York Peppermint Patties just because. I love how you never, ever go to sleep without kissing me goodnight and telling me you love me, even if you’re mad at me. I love that you help with laundry, doing dishes, and vacuuming. I love that you tell me I’m beautiful all the time, even if I’ve just woken up and still have my crappy baggy pjs on. I love that you send me cards and letters on days that aren’t even holidays. I love how you act annoyed when I ask for your blanket or pillow but are more than willing because we get to cuddle.
Baby, I can’t wait until the day that you’re home. I know we are missing days like Valentine’s Day, birthdays, and Mother’s/Father’s Day but to me they are just another day when you’re not home. There isn’t much to celebrate when my other half is missing. We will save all those special celebrations for the day you come home, just like we’re saving all of our hugs and kisses for you too. We miss you babe. We think about you every single day. We love you more than you know.
I love you this big.