Blog from the founder of the charity Little Troopers. Military wife and mum sharing thoughts and feelings of being a British Armed Forces family.

Little Troopers is a registered charity supporting all children with parents serving in the British Armed Forces, regular or reserve. We provide fundamental resources, initiatives and events to ease and aid repeated separation periods aiming to keep parent and child connected and bonded even when miles apart

25 Sep 2017

Consumed by responsibility

Another week we can tick off, it does seem to gain some momentum after a month or so and then they do pass by, whatever day he goes away always sticks in my mind and it's so bizarre that each week on that day I mentally tick it off with a smile and a pat on the back.

It has been a week of two halves for me, half being of great community vibe as I ran an event locally on Sunday for lots of  ladies who also have someone serving away from home.

It filled my heart with warmth.

We didn't know each other but all ate cake and just chatted a few hours away that would have otherwise been spent in our houses alone, it always reaffirms we absolutely all feel the same. One lovely lady was telling me how she missed a call from a number on her phone and cried because she thought she'd missed her husband calling for the number to then ring back and was a survey call which made her cry again...then her husband did manage to call and she cried again! It is that roller coaster of we can't contact them so it is a waiting game and sometimes they call at the worst time or you miss it and the emotions just spill out. We have ALL been there, those tears when you miss a call are so real.


The other half of this week has been slightly plagued with me really thinking and soul searching as to why I crumble sometimes when dealing with separation, especially as I should be so bloody used to it by now!

I get consumed by the responsibility of having sole care 24/7 for our daughter.

That was a hard admission! I promised myself to honestly account this time apart via the blog and I am finding by doing this I am learning a lot about myself and how I work which hopefully if I can articulate to you it will make others find that comfort and strength I so want to spread.
When I am flying solo for a longer period of time I struggle at night, I struggle when things go wrong and I struggle when it comes to making decisions for our daughter on my own. This week she wanted to go to the cinema with her friends....short story is she is 14 wanted to get a train on a Saturday night to see a 15 film and I just wasn't OK with it for lots of reasons but the point is I didn't have my husband here to ask his opinion, I couldn't ring or text him, I had to make a decision and be comfortable with it, what if she went and something happened and then I would have to take that on my shoulders. I didn't let her go.

There is no manual for being a parent or a military family and some of this is normal everyday stuff but I haven't chosen to be a single parent, I am sometimes due to us being a military family in situations that I just don't feel equipped to deal with and at those times my heart aches a bit that I am in this on my own at times where I just don't want to be.

On top of cinema clash this week my daughter had a situation where she became poorly very suddenly at a swimming competition, it scared her and it scared me and I flapped. I didn't know what to do, my husband is way better than me in situations like that and I felt really rubbish. It was OK, I got her home gave her tons of TLC and she was and will be fine. It shook me up, I wanted to be strong in that situation and I wasn't, all I wanted was my husband by my side.

My daughter was born in a foreign country to two serving military parents, from the age of 20 when I was pregnant I have doubted my ability as a Mummy, six long tours, a million exercises and courses later and I still have times when I doubt myself, when I am alone it is magnified which in summary is why I feel I struggle when my husband is deployed.

Can I fight off the baddies in the night alone?

 

Can I spot when my daughter is a bit poorly or really needs to go to hospital to have her appendix out?

 

Can I make the decision solo that she can do something she's not done before now shes a teenager?

 

Sometimes we are all trying to be Mummy and Daddy all rolled into one to children of all different ages and that is a huge responsibility especially if you can't make contact to get the reassurance you need but as someone said to be this week "all you can do is your best as a parent and your best is always good enough"

Huge high five to all of you out there keeping little humans alive while also managing to wade through a separation period, your best is just perfect for them.

Love Louise xxx

We are all just doing our best to grow good humans

6 comments:

  1. Anonymous25/9/17 23:04

    bang on point xxx i was at your event and may i say thank you x my girls loved it xxx i struggle when the kids are ill and at the moment my health is letting me down. I get upset when i hear people are in constant contact yet my hubby says his signal is rubbish ☹ ive never been jealous of a girl for example i am jealous over time ( i want to see and spend quality time) i just no were at the half way point xxx thank you for your effort and honesty x

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    1. Half way done!!!! It is downhill from here :-) Glad you came to the event it was a lovely afternoon, lots of love xxxx

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  2. Louise, as a husband who has served for 22 years and left my family for thousands of hours, days and months.
    I fully understand your story and so true the fact military wives that you are, never feel strong enough to make the decisions that should be shared and discussed as a family or couple, where the guilt of seperation and pain of missing your love ones, makes you think you are not strong enough... Well, I can tell you, just as I tell my wife, a military wife is the rock that supports all family, with a way in which you can hide the pain of seperation and put on that tempary single mum brave face and make that decision.
    I would like to thank all military wives, with a massive huge going out to my wife, for being the making the most amazing mums and wives in the world...... There is no perfect parent, wife or husband please give your selves a massive pat on the back and chin up .... Thank you for the deep, heartfelt post.

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    1. Nathan thank you so so much for taking the time to comment it means so much and so very interesting to have a view from 'the other side' Hope you are well :-) Louise x

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  3. I can relate to this so much at the moment. Had a complete melt down yesterday as trying to keep juggling everything and it just got a bit overwhelming. Plus I’m actually physically and mentally exhausted!
    My other half isn’t deployed he is just posted to a base over 4 1/2 hours so I find myself on my own the majority of the time!
    It’s so hard now that I’m a mum because like you, the thought of caring for him 24/7 is quite daunting!
    Thank you for such an honest post it’s so nice to be able to relate to someone!

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    1. Thanks for the comment and so glad it gives some comfort that we are all feeling the same, everything is always worse when exhausted too. Look after yourself xxx

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