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A Boy, A Girl, and The Marine Corps: A Love Triangle: July 2012

A Boy, A Girl, and The Marine Corps: A Love Triangle

"I cast my lot with a Marine and where he was, was home to me." ~ Anonymous.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Saying No To Your Spouse

How many of you honestly say No to your spouse?  I'm not talking about saying no to buying a new car to be financially responsible, or even saying no to buying a new toy or wasting money on silly snacks at the commissary, I'm talking, saying NO.

I put my foot down the other day and said no to my husband for the first time, really, ever.  I've put my foot down about our budget and insisted that includes chips, I've said no to a new car, silly toy or even, on the odd occasion, to a gift he intended to give me but I thought was too expensive.  But, in general, I'm not the kind of spouse who says no very often.  It's usually because I rarely feel what is being asked of me is unreasonable.

Though my husband and I have very different OPINIONS on much of life, we don't like to vacation at the same type of destinations (he's a beach kind of guy, and I am very much so NOT), we don't read the same books (he doesn't read books at all), and we don't like the same type of TV shows (I prefer crime related shows, he prefers anything else), the reality is, we share much of the same VIEWS on life.  This includes how our marriage should be structured and what constitutes an acceptable boundary. This means that situations rarely arise in our life where I actually say a firm no.

The other day, I did this.  I said no.  What I said no to is not the point, but I felt the boundaries of an acceptable request were far behind us in the dust.  The look in my husbands face was one of shock and complete disbelief.  He even then asked me, much like I imagine my father would have should I have said no to him, "what did you say?"  I repeated my firm stance and the damage was done.

Things are not any worse between us, nor is our marriage suddenly falling apart simply because I put my foot down for the first time, but it was a strange occurrence.   It took over four years of marriage and over 6 years of being together before we hit a point where I actually said no to my husband about something important.  The issue has since been dropped, a stand still in our gun fight having been reached, but only time will tell how this will effect our later arguments.  I can tell you, it made the one we were having quite impossible to finish with neither of us willing to cave and relinquish our positions on the matter.  My husband has taken to a status of avoidance, choosing to not bring up the issue again and not push the matter, but it is difficult for him since he is not used to this happening.  I'm continuing on much the same path I was previously, seeing as I refused to change courses to begin with.  I'm sure he's still angry that I said no, he is not used to not having a say in things and even more so not used to me not giving in on most matters, but everyone has to have a lesson in not getting their own way at some point.

We'll see how the situation turns out in the long run, but for now, it's a topic we are avoiding, until it's necessary to discuss it again.  Hopefully by then, his temper will have chilled and we will be able to have an actual discussion about this matter.

My question to you all is:  Do you often say no to your spouse as I did?  Or are you the spouse who is used to getting your own way?

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PS:  Don't forget to Link Up! http://aboyagirlandthemarinecorps.blogspot.com/2012/07/the-silly-things-i-tell-myself-link-up.html

Monday, July 30, 2012

The Silly Things I Tell Myself Link Up!

We all have a list of things we tell ourselves, mantras if you will, to get through life.  So, some aren't mantras so much as ways to make ourselves feel better.



Here's my list of silly things I tell myself:

1.  Chocolate is a health food.
- So I don't actually care for chocolate that much (gasp!) but, on the odd occasions I eat it, I tell myself it's a health food.  It's got antioxidants, so it combats aging, which makes it good for you.  Period.

2.  Sprinkles count as a serving of fruit.
- Really, anything pink, purple or blue (think blueberries people!) and sweet count as a fruit.  This includes the jelly inside of jelly donuts.  If it's a jelly donut with sprinkles, all the better.  This also means cupcakes count.  I think this is a perfectly reasonable deduction because of the article I once read about a college kid who got scurvy.  I'm not kidding.  He ate nothing but pizza (because he worked at a pizza place and it was free) and soda and managed to get scurvy.  The doc said if he had eaten just a handful of Skittles on occasion, he would have been fine.  See, rainbow colored candy counts as fruit.

3.  Ice Cream Sundays are a balanced meal.
- Let's revisit rules 1 and 2 for a moment.  Then add a dairy product (or two if you want whipped cream) and nuts for added protein.  You are now facing a balanced and, likely vegetarian, meal.


Be sure to link up below and share your silly things you tell yourself!  And don't forget to grab the blog hop link for your post so that others may link up via your page!  The more the merrier!  :)



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Friday, July 27, 2012

Oblivious

Something happened the other day and I've been debating about writing about it.  The reason is because it showcases how truly ridiculous and hopeless I am.  But hey, if you can laugh at life, you'll spend your whole life crying.

So, after all of my doctors appointments on Tuesday, I needed to stop at the grocery store by my house.  I had some new prescriptions to pick up and figured I should grab some snacks since I am having a hard time cooking with my neck pain.  I was standing in front of the cooler that has all the pre-made foods debating if I should get mediocre sushi or some form soup for lunch when I gentle came up to me and politely said, "I just wanted to let you know that you look lovely today."

Now, here is where you are going to laugh hysterically at me:

I replied, "Oh, uhm... Thank you." And that was it.  Well, I smiled too.  It did not even enter my mind that this man was hitting on me until he said, "Would you be interested in grabbing a beer some time?"

Mental forehead smack!

Here I am, going about my oblivious ways and I thought this random dude was just coming up to pay me a compliment.  Oh, so hopeless and ridiculous.

I told him I am married and he was so sweet.  He said he was sorry and felt embarrassed and told me to have a nice day.

I've spent my whole adult life wondering how normal people meet their spouses.  I met mine at work, but do people really meet at bars and grocery stores during the mundane events of their life?  I guess they do.  I guess it just takes one guy with the guts to walk up to a girl and ask her out...  It just never occurred to me that people actually do that!



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Thursday, July 26, 2012

New Link Up Starts Monday!

I'm very excited to announce that Kristle over at Forget the Dog, Not the Baby and I are launching a new Link Up!

Check out the Silly Things I Tell Myself page on my blog for more details.  And be sure to join us on Monday when we share our Silly Things!



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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Vulnerable


"When we were children, we used to think that when we were grown-up we would no longer be vulnerable.  But to grow up is to accept vulnerability... To be alive is to be vulnerable." - Madeleine L'Engle



How do you mend a broken heart? Some say time.  Some say you don't.  I honestly don't know.  But I do know that someone very dear to me recently said some things to me that were so hurtful that I literally felt a pain in my chest.  I could actually feel the moment that must be why we call it a "broken heart." 

I thought I could sleep it off.  Forgive and forget.  Move one.  But I'm still hurt.  I'm actually devastated.  This is a person who means a lot to me and it was horrifying to watch the words come out of their mouth with such callousness.  These cruel things were flung into the universe with no care as to where they would land, which was at my feet.  And this person seemed to almost relish in the pained look on my face, in the tears that I cried, and the hurt that it caused.  And none of those reactions stopped the onslaught of crushing verbal blows to my self, my pride, my sense of self worth, and our relationship. 

I will freely admit that when I feel cornered and threatened I can also spew hatefulness into the world.  I did say some hurtful things in retaliation.  Due to the immense pain I was in, and the fact that I was actually caught slightly off guard, the things I had to say in response were not as harmful as what was said to me, but the damage is done.  I try not to retaliate in these situations.  I try to remember that hurtful words are not alway backed up with a true belief in what is being said, but in the desire to create maximum pain.  But I did retaliate, if for nothing else than to attempt to stop what felt like a never ending attempt to defend myself to no avail. 

My heart still hurts.  My stomach aches.  

We can, as adults who have been hurt in the past, buffer ourselves.  We build walls, pseudonyms to blog under to protect our feelings, we prevent people from truly getting to know us, but someone in our life does.  There is always someone who knows us and has been let in enough to hurt us.  Or we are already aching and trying to prevent further damage.  Either way, we will always be vulnerable to the wounding acts of others. 



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Another Installment of "Cool Ways to Find My Blog... Sort of"

So, because I've decided my hilariously awesome "key search words" are too good to keep to myself, I've decided to make this an ongoing things.

The newest, best keywords:

Stuck on Gunk Night Guard-  No idea.  I don't know that I've EVER mentioned the fact that I wear a night guard and I'm pretty sure I haven't talked about stuck on gunk... Though maybe I mentioned the night guard once, still, stuck on gunk?  Ew.

Stabbed with Dirty Needle-  Well, I'm sure I mentioned at some point having been stabbed with a needle.  Heck, I get stabbed by needles at work all the time, but seriously, this makes it sound like I'm a junky.  Who is searching this?  And why would that lead to my blog?

And the winner of this installment of Cool Ways to Find My Blog... Sort of:

More Than One in Bed-  I'm stumped, but that there is funny.   :)



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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

A Heart to Heart... With my Doctor

I love my job.  I mean, I LOVE my job.  It is a constant struggle in my life that I work so much.  I work through lunch, I don't get snacks, I stay late, I get called in early.  It's not just that I love my actual, physical job, but I love where I work and love my co-workers.  This causes a massive problem.  I'm motivated to a fault and it's a well known fact that when someone calls in sick, they usually don't bother to call anyone else because they know I'll come in, even if I'm not on call.  And I have had a tremendous amount of guilt associated with having had to take a few days off due to my recent injury.  Heck, I laid in bed and felt bad when I was sick with the flu for a week, even though I was having to go into the doctor to get IV fluids every few days.  I even tried to get up and go to work one of those days I ended up getting fluids.  It's a sickness...  Pun intended.  But it really is a sickness.

It's an issue with not wanting to let people down.  I've spent most of my life trying to never let anyone down.  When it was decided I would move to part time to be home more for my husband, I felt awful.  If I stayed full time, I was letting my husband and my marriage down, if I go part time, I'm letting my co-workers/friends down.  See... Sickness.

So, this is what I did.  I went to my appointment last week and asked to be released back to work.  No, I'm not kidding.  When the doctor told me I needed a few more days off, I replied, "Does today and tomorrow count, because I'm supposed to be back to work in two days." (SICKNESS!!!)  He told me I could work my up coming shifts, full duty, as a trial.  I'm not going to lie to my doctor, so I went back in today and told him that I felt like I'd been hit by a Mack Truck and was too painful to sleep.  I'm frustrated.  I want to work, but I was in pain at work and one of my doctors repeatedly threaten to send me home.  My response to said doctor?  "I can power through with some time to ice my neck because we are too busy to be down a person." (WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?)  At the end of my visit, I had been cut to part time, not allowed to work more than 8 hours a shift (I currently work 14 hour shifts) and am not allowed to lift, push or pull more than 5 pounds, I'm not supposed to reach and I need to limit how much I rotate my neck...  Yowza. This may or may not have been in response to me admitting that carrying my purse, even in my hand, gives me a headache...

The heart to heart came at the end of my visit.  My doctor told me that I shouldn't be frustrated.  I have a pretty wicked injury to my neck and jaw and I need to take it easy.  He understood that I'm used to taking care of everyone and my patients and that I may or may not be a slight workaholic, but that now is time for me to focus on ME.  I have to take it easy and I'm not letting anyone one down if I do.

Whoa.  I've never told him I feel that way, he just seemed to read between the lines as to who I am.  I was shocked, but I needed to hear it.  Sometimes we all need to hear the truth.  I may love my job, I may not want to disappoint people, I may not want to feel like I'm letting people down, but I also have to take care of my injury.  It doesn't make me a bad employee, it makes me a realistic one.  And I CANNOT risk further injury or prolonged recovery time because I don't want my work to be mad at me.  My husband also made a good point, I will be in deep S*** with the state should I ignore doctors orders for an L&I case, which I am honestly sooooo tempted to do, and I would not be doing anyone any good.

Is a few extra hours at work worth permanent damage to my body?  No, and I know that.  Ok, so I'm telling myself that.  My new mantra, whether I believe it or not, is:  I'm not letting people down.  It's not worth further injury.

If I say it enough, I'll believe it... Right?  (Siiiiccckkkkneeessss! (in a sing songy voice))

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Monday, July 23, 2012

Get to Know Me a Little, Thanks to Mrs. Duh

Mrs. Duh, who I grow to adore more and more as each day passes, has nominated me for another blog award.  As you well know, I never used to really participate in such things, but she always has such good ones that are useful for getting to know me as a blogger, but also as a person.  :)  Man, she's good.  :)


So, as always, I encourage you to check out her blog: 





On to the Award: 

Here is some info about the Liebster Award:

This award is given to up and coming bloggers with less than 200 followers. Liebster is German and means sweetest, kind, lovely, endearing, and welcome.
How it works:
1. Each person must post 11 things about themselves.
2. Answer the questions that the tagger set for you and create 11 questions for bloggers you have tagged.
3. Choose up to 11 bloggers and link them to your post.
4. Go to their page and tell them.
5. No tag backs.

My Questions: 




1. What did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be an FBI Profiler... I'm not joking.  I picked this career as an 11 year old in 6th grade and was actually going to school to pursue my Criminal Psychology degree when I met my husband and dropped out to be able to allow him to follow his dreams.  Our dreams were not compatible and I chose to follow him while he pursued his. :)  

2. It's movie night, what movie genre are you out to see? (Comedy, Chick-flick, Action, etc.)
Comedy all the way.  The raunchier the better. 

3.  What is your go-to recipe when you have people over for dinner?
Well, seeing as I'm a terrible cook, it's usually marinated steaks that the boy grills.  But, when push comes to shove, I make a mean Vodka Sauce and Penne. :)

4. What website do you frequent the most?
I hate to admit this, but it is FB, followed in a close second by my blog... Hey, I have no life, my blog, you guys, and FB are it.  

5. What is your favorite sport to watch?
Yeah, I don't really do that.  I don't watch much in the way of TV in general, let alone sports. 

6. How about your favorite sport to play?
I grew up playing Softball and Volleyball and to this day, still love them both. 

7. I'm looking for an interesting read... what book do you recommend?
Oh, so many good books!  I would start with ANYTHING by AJ Jacobs.  I have reviewed a few of his books on my blog and LOVE him.  I loved the Hunger Games, and it's rare that I get sucked into a craze like that, but it is worth the read.  Shit My Dad Says deserves all the hype it got and was hysterical and touching from start to finish.  And if you like Jane Austen, then read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.  It wasn't a super well written book, but was so much fun to read and, hey, it has FREAKING ZOMBIES in it.  I could keep going, but I'll stop.  LOL!

8. What do you love most about your hometown?
My actual hometown? Nothing.  But where I live now?  It's small, quaint and everyone waves hello.  :)  My actual hometown is a bit of a dump. 

9.If you could give $100,000 to any charity, which one would you donate to and why?
I would divide it among a few.  I think the Fisher House charity should get some, as should Wounded Warrior project.  I am, of course, a big fan of anyone that is supporting wounded veterans.  But I would want to give some money to Friend to Friend America.  They pair volunteers up with people in nursing homes who don't have family.  The volunteers agree to visit at least once a month for a year.  I think it's a wonderful organization and many of these people develop life long bonds.  

10. What is the origin and meaning of your first name? 
Well, technically it's an Irish name that means something Irish-y.  But really, I got named my first name because my parents wanted to name me Emily, but realized I might be scarred for life when I found out it was also the name of their first dog.  At least they changed it from that, right?  

11. Name one household chore you absolutely hate doing.
Cleaning the shower.  Period.  There is nothing I hate more than that.  In fact, it is THE ONLY chore I hate to do. 


Since blogger still won't let me comment, I am unable to let anyone know about my giving them such an award.  :(  Very sad, but I can only comment intermittently, so I'm giving this award to anyone who thinks it might be fun.  :)

My questions to you are:

1.  What is one dream you are holding onto, still waiting for the time to make it a reality?
2.  What is one animal you would NEVER own as a pet, and why?
3. If you could pick any one place to vacation for the rest of your life, and this is the only place you were allowed to go from now on, where would that one place be?
4. What do you think makes a good blogger?
5.  What is your absolutely favorite thing about your spouse or significant other?  
6.  What is your least favorite?
7.  Where is the one place in the whole world that you would NEVER want to visit?
8.  If you could only eat one kind of candy for the rest of the year, which candy would you pick?
9.  Is what you do now your dream job? If not, what would be your dream job?
10.  If you pick anyone you know to be president of the USA, no election, you get to choose them, who would you pick and why? (And it has to be someone you actually know)
11.  What is your least favorite color and why?



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Friday, July 20, 2012

How do you make sense of the senseless?

By now you have all heard about the shooting in Colorado... By now, you have seen the FB post of outrage and condolences.  But what do we do now?  After the initial shock is over, after politicians cancel events in honor of the tragedy and the initial wave of anger fades as everyone goes about their day, how do we make sense of the senseless?

I read the articles, the first hand accounts of an organized gunman propping open a door, throwing down smoke grenades (possibly tear gas), putting a mask on his face and calmly walking in and opening fire on a crowd who thought it was special effects for the premier of the movie.  No one suspected at first, that this young man had a well thought out plan to kill them.  My stomach turned as it was compared to the Columbine shootings, which happened just 13 miles away...

Everyone has a different reaction to these horrible times.  I have seen so many on FB posting their frustration that children, the youngest shooting victim being 3 months old, were at a midnight screening of the show.  They are venting their inability to comprehend these events by blaming the parents for having young children out so late.  But think back to times when you were growing up, out late with your parents because they too, had no thought that something awful would happen.  Everyone tries to sort out the fear in different ways.

We don't know the gunman's motives right now.  At this point, they have not announced having found a letter, a journal entry, or even the man himself, only 24 years old, announcing to the world what led him to such an act of violence and depravity.  It means that we are left to sort through this on our own.  We are left to listen to the stories of survivors and try to understand how this could happen to someone who was doing something that we could see ourselves doing, attending a midnight premier of a highly anticipated movie.  And often, we rationalize our fears by telling ourselves that we would never have children at a midnight showing, so it wouldn't happen to us.  We would have been able to hide faster, run quicker or recognize the danger that no one seemed to sense.

The truth is, in times likes these, there will never be a right or wrong way to react.  That man went into a dark theater with a plan for maximum damage.  He went in fully aware that not a single person in that theater would understand what was happening until it was too late.

I'm not sure we will ever, as people who would not commit such acts of hatred toward another human being, be able to understand.  I can only offer my prayers, my thoughts and my heart to those affected.

I just don't know if we will ever be able to make sense of something so utterly, horrifically senseless.



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An Open Letter to My Physical Therapist

I understand that you claim to have gotten into this job to heal.  I do not know if Physical Therapist take an oath, but I'm pretty sure you have forgotten yours... Because I'm sure it's like the MD oath, which clearly states, "First Do No Harm."

You keep telling me that this is a long term treatment.  That I will feel better with time, but I was feeling A LOT better before our appointment today and now I feel worse.

I'm pretty sure that you (and all Physical Therapists) do it because you are sadists.


PS.  I really did enjoy our conversation about the Tough Mudder and the various mud runs you have participated in.  That part of our visit was lovely.


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Thursday, July 19, 2012

My Life In Pictures: European Version 1.0

I know I promised pictures from our Europe trip, I also know that I never delivered on that promise.  My excuses are two fold.  1.  There are literally thousands of pictures to sort through and choose from.  2. My husband is in all the good ones! And anyone who's been reading my blog for longer than today knows that pictures of him are strictly forbidden if they show his face, and who takes vacation pictures with their husband, but doesn't try to get his face in them? Ok, so maybe I do that sometimes, but only when he's being a dork...

So, here are some of the fun ones that don't have him in them, or at least, you can't see him well.  My new plan is to take some of of the good ones and blur his face.  Problem solved.  LOL!  I will also have to do several installments of this because, well, I literally have thousands of pictures!

In the mean time, enjoy My Life in Pictures: European Version 1.0

This is the screen that I could watch on the plane.  It showed us how far we were to our next stop.  I snapped this just before we arrived in Iceland to switch planes to the one that would take us to London.

Because we ALL know how HILARIOUS Mussolini is. 

I now know what it's like to be a princess... Or at least tinkle like one.  Meet A Girl on a Royal Toilet.  
I'm not good at serious pictures- So, this was me outside of the Louvre on our private bike tour of Paris. 

Only I could crash my bike on a super controlled bike tour of Paris... I'm that good at being THAT clumsy. Y'all think I'm joking about being a klutz. 

I'm trying to mimic the shape of the pyramid outside of the Louvre and as, The Boy said, "you suck at making a pyramid." LOL!

On our actual anniversary, we went to a fancy dinner then went to the top of the Eiffel Tower. They light it up at night every hour and make it sparkle.  :)


And now, just for fun: 





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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Blogger 411: Getting to know me a little more



What's more fun than getting to know other bloggers? Not much! And I figured, since I've had a recent spike in new readers in the last few months, now is a good time to let y'all know a bit about me while participating in a super fun link up!


1. How long have you been blogging? And what got you started on blogging? Has your blog changed?
I have been blogging for almost 4 years. The original title of this blog was Deployment Woes, but I recently changed it. I started this blog as a means of coping with a deployment, hence the name. LOL! It's changed some, but not much. It's still just my inner thoughts and ramblings for the most part, but I think I've grown up (some, not much). I've also gone from new military wife, to 4 year veteran military wife, so with that comes changes in how you view things. 

2. Did you go to college? If so where, and what did you study?
I've gone to college at 2 different places for two different degrees. I was originally studying Forensics Psychology, which was at once school. When I went back to school during my husbands deployment, I studied Veterinary Sciences and got a two year degree in that. Sorry, can't share which colleges I attended... That breaks the rules of sharing that my husband and I have agreed on.

3. Where have you traveled?
Until this year, I hadn't traveled very many places. Idaho, Montana, California, and Oregon to visit family over the years... I've been to Canada a few times, but twice were on school sponsored trips, so they only kind of count and once to the East Coast, DC and NYC to be exact. This year, however, I fulfilled my dream of traveling to Europe and getting a passport! We went to London, Paris, and Edinburgh. :) 

4. If you won the lottery, what would be the first thing you would buy? 
I'm a nerd, I would pay off my debt and house before I did anything. But then I would buy a new car. 

5. What are your 3 biggest pet peeves? 
Adults who talk like babies when babies are not present. People who think their animals are human children and treat them as such. (don't get me wrong, I love my dogs like my own children, but I also am able to recognize that they are, in fact, still dogs) People who talk down to me. 

6. What is your favorite movie? 
There are so many, so I'll list my top few: Wizard of Oz, Disney's Alice in Wonderland, The Usual Suspects, Raise the Red Lantern, Dr. Horrible's Sing A Long Blog - To name a few. There are more. :)

7. What is your drink of choice; wine, beer, or liquor. Or Water, Soda, Tea? 
Water. I don't drink much soda, don't like wine, and don't like beer... Though, I would probably drink Bloody Mary's all day long if I could. 

8. What is something you enjoy to do when you have me time? 
I like to read, watch TV and/or take a bath. Neither of those are things I get to do often. 

9. If you could have a $10,000 shopping spree to one store, which store would it be? 
I would pick Lowe's Hardware Store... Seriously. We have SOOOO many things we need to do around the house and I need a new stove. :)

10. Share with us an embarrassing moment of your past? Or present. 
Oh man! There are soooo many! To pick just one embarrassing moment is tough- How about this one: When I was in high school (and to this day) I was on the Depo shot. This means that I don't actually menstruate. I know, don't be jealous. LOL! But it also means that when I do, rarely, get my period, it comes as a big surprise. So, one day, I was sitting in band class and I didn't know I had started my period... This, of course had to happen on the day we were being fitted for our concert uniforms... in groups... in front of each other. Do you see where this is going? Well, I not only got my name called and had to stand up in front of the class to exit the room (cue not well concealed snickering), but then had to walk into a room and start to change in front of any number of bratty, teenage girls, cue mortified embarrassment. Hey, we've all had horrifying moments in our life, right? 

11. What day would you love to relive again? 
The day my husband came home from deployment. Watching him step off that bus from the airport was one of the happiest moments of my life.

12. If your life was turned into a movie... what actor would play you? 
Uh... Tina Fey. She's the only one who could make the comedy of errors that is my life seem genuine and heart warming, and slightly less painful to watch because it would come across as endearing. Not to mention, I think she could spot on do my dry sarcasm. 

13. What are the jobs you had in high school/college/the early years? 
A LOT of them: Let's see: I worked at a movie theater, a scrap book store, a restaurant, as a baby sitter, a video store, a grocery store, a clothing store... I was a massage therapist for a number of years and just before doing what I do now, I worked for an international shipping company loading trailers. :) 

14. Show us a picture from high school or college. 
HHHMMM, I don't have any that have been scanned. Yep, I come from the age before digital cameras. And the internet. LOL! (But only by a little)

15. If you could travel anywhere in the world, all expenses paid, where would you go? 
Easy! Back to Europe! I'd love to spend more time in Edinburgh, I'd like to hit Greece, more time in London and Paris... I'd love to see Italy. I'd just like to bounce from country to country. 


16. Show us most current picture of you or you, or your family, or anything of meaning to you.
You get two:


A recent picture of me- Taken outside of the London Aquarium. I <3 penguins.

Something Important to me: Though this is a funny picture, I'll tell you why it's still important. I had dreamed my whole life of getting to see Monet's water lilies up close and personal. I dreamed of going to Musee de L'Orange and seeing his round rooms in person. This is my husband knocking on the giant stone door on the backside of the L'Orange just before we walked around to the front and I got to go in and see them. It's something I will never forget. We even went back to see them a second time.

17. Where do you see your life 5 years from now?
I see myself doing what I do now. 5 years is not that long if you think about it. I'll probably still be a vet tech and living life much the same way. Though I do hope that in 5 years we will have purchased our property somewhere and will be moving forward with the dream of building our dream home.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Please Learn From Our Snafu

If you are like us, or like me, you are all about being prepared.... Most of the time.  When my husband deployed I was ON TOP OF IT!!!!  I had his documents in this pile, in this place, I had an extra copy of his will here, I had the documents I would need regularly in this pile, and our emergency plan laid out.  But, when he came home, those documents were labeled and filed away.  The emergency plan was no longer useful and we went about our half military/half civilian life that is being a reserve family, because, if you are like us, and are a reserve family, you don't use your unit for anything and have likely never had a reason to contact them for anything as a spouse unless he was deployed.

As a reserve wife, I don't even know most of the people in my husbands command from month to month, nor do I have any reason to have contact with them.  We are not eligible for most programs, and we rarely have things come up that our spouses can't deal with for us (when it comes to needing to contact the command).  And we are often expected to deal with most issues in a civilian manner, not military. So, if you are like me, it never occurred to you to have an emergency plan in place, he's only gone for a few days a month anyway. And, if you are like me, you have no idea how to contact his unit anyway.

When my husband was deployed, I was a member of the FRG (still called the Key Wives Club, though transitioning to being called the FRG while I was a member).  Spouses would call me and I would send stuff up the chain of command.  I had my point of contact at the unit and email addresses for those that I needed to be in contact with.  When The Boy came home, our FRG was disbanded and our POC left the unit just days later.  We were never alerted to someone taking his place and all other members of the command cycled out shortly after.  So, when I got injured a few days ago and needed to contact my husband, I had no idea what to do.  Red Cross wouldn't help me, neither would Military One Source.  So, what do I do when I'm at home, injured, freaked out and panicking that I have no way of reaching my husband?  I called family and friends and was striking out left and right when it came to getting help in general and my panic and stress lever rose higher and higher with each call I made.  It's very scary to be in a situation like that and not even be able to get word to your spouse.

Please learn from our little snafu.  It is important as a reserve family to know who to contact when an emergency arises and your spouse is unreachable.  Who is supposed to be in charge of the inactive FGR? (my husband actually laughed at that question because we don't have anyone in charge of it currently)  Who should we ask for in an emergency and what is their phone number?

Create a list of these items:

  • Create a list of the people you should call and in what order when someone is not available.
  • Create a list of resources (provided by the command) that you can use in emergency situations
  • Discuss what situations your command deems necessary to pull your spouse out of the field 
  • Find out what services you are eligible for as a reserve family, since it's not all of them.
  • Find out if there are spouses in your area that you can fall back on in a time of need- I know you might not have any, but you might have ones you don't know about.
  • Find out if the command is interested in having an informal FRG for these types of situations. 
  •  Make sure your husband has his phone charger on him when he leaves to ensure that he is not unreachable due to his phone dying.  Sadly, this happens.  LOL!
  • Make sure people at work know that your spouse is gone and that alternate emergency contacts should be use
  • Also make sure that they are aware so that, if you don't show up, they know they may be the only ones noticing your absence. 

This situation could have been a lot less stressful for me if we had just had an emergency plan in place. You'd better believe we will have the most comprehensive emergency plan ever from here on out and so will our unit in all likelihood.  In 6 years of being together and four years of marriage, I have never had to contact his unit in an emergency, but it was stupid of us to assume we never would.

Have a plan in place.  Just because we rarely use our spouses unit as a resource, doesn't mean that we don't need to know who to contact and how to contact them.



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Monday, July 16, 2012

Check Out My Guest Post

Hola!

Please head on over to Head in the Game.  Heart in the Sand  and check out my guest post about how I de-stress.  I'm tell you, after the week I've had, I've been having to really focus on destressing.

If you aren't following her already, I suggest you do so.  She not only has great insights, but spends a little time each week trying to help fashion challenged people like me find a bit a help.  :)  I really enjoyed reading her blog and just know you will too!




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Sunday, July 15, 2012

All I Can Do Is Laugh...

You would think that after 6 years of being together and 4 years of marriage, that my 10 year veteran of the USMC and I would have an emergency plan in place, complete with alternate emergency contacts and what to do with the dogs.  But we don't.  Because we are dumb.  I have the most AMAZING, organized emergency plan for when he deploys, but not for when he's stateside... See, dumbasses.

So, I panicked and then freaked out!  Should I call the Red Cross?  I don't need him to come home, but I want him to be aware of what is going on, but I don't want him to worry, but I would feel better if he knew... How do I contact his unit?  Who would I even ask for? AAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!!  Where do the dogs go?  AAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!

So, I called Red Cross.  Here's the tale of my experience with it all:

-Hello, Mr. Red Cross.  This is my situation and I have no contact info for my husband unit and need to get this word to him.
- Well, we don't really do that.
-Oh.  I mean, I don't need him to be taken out of his current situation, I just need to get the word to him about this.
-Well, we really only do that if you are in the hospital. 
-Oh, Ok.
-You don't have contact info?
-No, I don't. 
- Is he a full time for PART TIME reservist?
-I guess full time, he does his duty and drills etc. 
- Where's he stationed- (insert my reply along with his unit info)
- What unit is he attached to when he's not there?

At this point, the rest of the conversation is a joke.  I uselessly tried to explain how it works and he didn't even seem to understand how the military works in general.  Sigh.  He couldn't even seem to understand what to look for in his data base of the military units stationed at various places.  I politely excuse myself from the conversation and said I would attempt to contact another spouse.

I did eventually find some contact info for The Boys unit.  I called them and explained what was going on and that I just need to get word to him.  I was told that some of the men were on Liberty right now, and some weren't so they would try to track him down.  Super good news.... Then the lovely Mr. I&I asked me (mind you I prefaced the phone call with I am ____'s WIFE), "Does he have your contact information?"  Nope.  I've been married to him for four years, we share a bed and own a house and have dogs, but he doesn't have my email, landline, cell phone or mailing address.  That would just be silly. Geesh!  Now, I didn't say that.  I politely said, yes, then gave him a number just in case.  I wanted to say, "Are you f'ing kidding me?"  But I didn't.  I simply sighed and hung up the phone.

All I can do is laugh.  It's just how it goes when Murphy's Law takes effect.


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Saturday, July 14, 2012

I was wrong... It's not ok...

It was all supposed to be ok.  I put that out into the universe today so that the universe would hear my plea.  But that stupid Murphy's Law that kicks into overdrive when The Boy is away and unreachable for military duty always insists on proving to me that not only will everything go wrong, but I will once again have to figure out how to make life function in the worst possible circumstances.

I was at work today and all was going well.  It was actually pretty slow, which was nice because I still have yet to get more than a few hours sleep a night (as it has been for the last week) and last night was KILLER at work!  A sad Doberman came in with an upset belly and he was so nervous.  He seemed to like me and trust me.  My theory on this is that these big "scary" breeds can sense those of us who understand them.  It might sound silly, but this terrified dog, who everyone else was trying to be good with, walked up to me and licked my face.  He just sort of tolerated everyone else.

So, I went in to take some x-rays of his belly and when we were done, we (three of us because he was not only big for his breed, but wickedly overweight) were attempting to help him get up and off the table when he panicked and flailed.  He managed to smash his rock hard head into my jaw and stun me.  This quickly turned into a headache, my jaw not wanting to open all the way and significant neck pain. It then turned into my losing range of motion in my neck, in spite of icing and taking an NSAID.  I ended up having to head over to the urgent care center.

That turned into a neck brace and being strapped to a backboard.  The x-rays didn't who anything exciting, but I'm still in a lot of pain and still am not able to open my jaw or move my neck much.  The doc wouldn't release me back to work, the boy is gone and I can't find anyone who can help me care for the two puppies that I can no longer walk...

I tried my mom, but she told me she would only do it if I absolutely couldn't find anyone else.  She didn't even ask if I was ok.  This is a primary reason I don't really speak with my parents.  She told me I should continue to try to contact our friend who works nights as a police officer (who is likely not answering right now because he's at work).  She also said it would be better for me to bug him in the morning, after he's worked all night, than for her to have to get up and drive up here.  Granted she lives an hour away, but I'm not sure why I'm expected to be able to make it to an 11am brunch at her house after working until 4am the night before, but she can't get up and make an hour drive to help her injured daughter simply because she doesn't want to.  It's along the lines of when I think in my head, "The phone works both ways, " when she asks why I haven't called her in a while.

I'm being carted off to an occupational specialist who can hopefully fit me in ASAP next week.  The doc never did really, fully explain what she thinks is wrong with my neck and jaw, but did say my neck isn't broken...

It's funny.  When I was laying there waiting to hear what the x-ray showed, I was worried it would show something horrible.  I figured, if it didn't, then I would be ok and sent back to work.  It never occurred to me that I would be messed up, but not have anything dire wrong... Silly, right?  I should know better, doing what I do for a living.

So, pain, no help, and a sucky family it is.  Fingers crossed it's nothing terrible and I feel better ASAP, because I have no idea what's going to happen if I continue to not be able to care for the dogs when my family is so unwilling to be concerned.

What to know what makes it worse?  My mom is in the human medical field.  She knows full well how severely limiting neck injuries can be.  She also has suffered from one, so you would think she would be concerned and care that I'm on bed rest for the next few day.  But hey, you can't pick your family, right?

Sadly, it's not all ok, as I hoped.  But I'll just keep plugging away, since it's what I do best.


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It's going to be OK...

I just need to put this out into the universe because I'm pretty sure I'm going to CRACK!

It's going to be ok that the Boy is away and the dogs are driving me crazy.
It's going to be ok that the dogs have been barking and fighting.
It's going to be ok if the neighbors complain about the dogs barking and fighting to the HOA
It's going to be ok that their dog daycare can't take them next week because I traded a shift with someone
It's going to be ok that they person who was going to watch them during the week for me to help, can't now.
It's going to be ok that my head is killing me because I'm scheduled for my injections in a couple weeks.
It's going to be ok that I haven't slept in a consecutive week and am unlikely to get any sleep in the coming week.
It's going to be ok that I'm having to call the insurance companies and do a little battling again.

It's going to be ok that I think I'm about 2 minutes from a complete breakdown

It's just simply going to be ok...

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Thursday, July 12, 2012

I miss her...

She was the loveliest person I have ever known.  Her favorite color was pink.  She adored Barbie and laughed at everything.  I miss her.  The hurt I feel when I see someone who looks like her is still so fresh.  I can't believe how much time has past.

She was in a car that lost control and was the only one killed.  No one else suffered any lasting damage to self, but she never came home.  It was the September after I graduated high school.

I think of her often, probably more often than I should.  It is a tough lesson to have to learn so young that life ends.  And sometimes, even when you tell yourself that it won't, those thoughts can't stop the world from happening.  I did not grow up with a youthful sense of immortality.  The people I knew who had died were not older, they were not grandparents who had lived a full life.  They were my friends.  They were just kids who had their whole life ahead of them and had yet to experience anything beyond the the protective bubble of high school.

I miss her.  I remember the anger I felt at the world that would take such a light and snuff it out without care.  Now I'm just sad.  Now I just miss her.


I miss her 
because she can not banter 
with my unwagging tongue 
and because her hand
may never write another letter.
I miss her
because she was beautiful
though no one ever told her 
as often as I have thought it.
I miss her
because sometimes I am happy,
because now, I can not share that with her
because she is not here to be shared.


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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Random Memory From The Boys Deployment

I really wanted to title this post, "How to hide porn in cereal boxes," but I thought that might be a bit blunt...

Yesterday, a friend of mine posted on FB about how she was told by someone that she can't ship food overseas because it's not on the customs form.  We all had a lovely discussion about how that wasn't true, or how others got around overly grumpy postal workers who would refuse packages with food listed on them.

I sent food to my husband all the time and I listed it on my customs forms and no one at my post office cared.

Either way, it led me to remember the lovely meeting our command had for the spouses about what you can and CANNOT send to the boys while deployed.  (Don't be offended by my use of boys.  We didn't have any female Marines in the unit at the time)

1. Don't send alcohol.
2. Don't send smokes
3. Don't send porn.

Ok, sounds good...

All was well and fine until we hit number three.  In an ever so clever manner, our higher up proceeded to explain how we can send all kinds of different foods, including cereal.  He then just so happened to mention that the interior of a cereal box happens to be the exact size of your average Playboy.

I don't think I've ever giggle so hard during a meeting with my husbands unit!

Very clever Mr. I&I, very clever indeed.

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Monday, July 9, 2012

Military Monday Blog Hop

In honor of the Military Monday Blog Hop, I figured I'd share a bit about me:

I'm A Girl.  I'm a 20 something blogger who loves cheese, hates cooked carrots and can't decided if I love my dogs, or if I want to re-home them at any given moment of my day.

I've been married for four years to a Marine who has 10 years in service.  We spent the better part of the first year, and part of our second year with him deployed.

I'm a vet tech, lover of animals that don't try to eat my face, and love to giggle at things I think are silly.

I don't like cucumbers, but eat a fair amount of them because I have them and they are good for me.

I'm a plant murderer, but have managed to salvage my herb garden and have a hydrangea that resurrects it's self each year, with very little effort on my part.

I like to have pink things because I'm the least girly person you will meet and it makes people laugh when I have pink stuff.

My favorite color is green, but I own nearly zero green things.

I have a love affair with garden gnomes.  I honestly don't know why.  I just love them.  I even had one present at my wedding.  I'm not kidding.  He's in all of our pictures.

I do my fair share of complaining here, but try to mix it up with ridiculousness every now and then, and I love comments, but don't tend to comment on others blogs... I'm more of a lurker.  I'm working on that.



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I love and hate my job sometimes

I received some very sad news on the 4th.  Just 15 minutes before our guest were to arrive for a BBQ, my mother called to inform my that my aunt had died.  She has been failing in health for a number of years and had been suffering strokes.   Her most recent strokes were affecting her ability to swallow and chew.  She had suffered a few cases of aspiration pneumonia and the likes.  On the 4th, she began to choke while eating and ultimately choked to death.  A very horrible and sad way to die.

Because my grandfather is dying of cancer, the family has been flying in very frequently to be near him.  He is currently working to fulfill his bucket list and is not always home, but when he is, they are there to help him get to appointments and such.  It just so happened as a result of this, that my whole family was in town when my aunt died, so they decided to have a dinner Saturday night in her honor.

I spoke to my boss who tried to help me find someone who would trade me shifts on Saturday so that I could be with family.  No one would trade on such short notice.  My boss, feeling horrible for me, agreed to work the first half of my shift.

I was called mid afternoon by my job.  I answered without a "hello" and simply stated that I was NOT going to go into work early, my boss was working for me.  I was informed that she had called out and they were busy.  I told them I was going to be an hour south.  As I was getting ready to walk out the door to head for the dinner, I was called in to work being told that they were extremely busy.  Because this was not covered by bereavement leave definitions, I feared reprisal if I were to refuse.  I cried in my living room for 20 minutes after calling my mom and telling her I couldn't make it.  I then gathered myself and headed into work.

I was pissed to say the least and did my best to NOT murder, maim and other wise hurt take it out on my coworkers and proceeded to have an intensely busy shift filled with frustration, lack of communication, and not enough staffing to cope.  I fought back tears my entire shift.

It's situations like these that I HATE my job at an ER.

That said, we ended up having to call in my boss as well, due to needing more staff.  She found out I had been called in early and missed my family dinner.  She showed up, dealing with her own personal crisis, and apologized to me.  She explained that she had told them that they were to call her, not me, if they should need help.  It was not made clear to them that it was unacceptable to call me.  She was trying to protect my personal life and did not tell them that my aunt had died, though people on staff were aware... I'm trying not to be mad that some of those people were part of the decision making group that called me in... Either way, she felt awful, I felt awful and we all had a terrible night.

It's stuff like that that make me LOVE/HATE my job.

When things finally quieted down in my triage world, I helped the other nurses get caught up on their treatments and clean up our messes and stock.  My shift lead approached me and told me that I should go home.  Not because I had done anything wrong, but because her and the other nurse were pretty upset that I had been called in and felt that I deserved to have a chance to go home and mourn.

It's people like that that make me LOVE my job.

It was tough to have to go through it.  I'm still mourning.  I have such fond memories of my aunt.  Maybe in the morning, I'll write a post about her so you can all love her like I do...

I'm mourning the loss of an uncle who died in February, while we were in Europe.  I still struggle with that.  I might share some stories of him as well.

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Friday, July 6, 2012

Cool ways to find my blog... Sort of

So, I don't know how many bloggers check this, but there is a function on blogger that will tell you the "keywords" that have been searched that have lead to your blog.  I love to check them each week because I have found some hilarious one that seriously make me question the content of my blog.

Case in point:  A few weeks ago one of my key search words was "small boy small small boy underwear"  I'm not kidding.  Why? I have no idea, nor do I think someone who is searching would want to read my blog. LOL!

This week I've got some good ones:

Marine Corps bad news 2012-  I guess I'm a great news source for that?  And what bad news was this guy searching for?

Marine with PTSD beats wife and baby- I honest to goodness have ZERO idea why this would bring up my blog.  I guess my post about PTSD on TV made some waves?  Whoa, is all I can say to this one.

And the winner for the weirdest keyword search of the week is:

I have a question are you a triangle- ???????


Having "A love triangle" in the title brings up the normal love triangle, bad relationship searches, but sometimes I get some really fun ones.  :)

To any of you bloggers out there, have you checked your "keywords" and have you gotten any good ones?


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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Curious as to your thoughts and opinions...


Forget Battling Bare for a moment.  That is not what this is about.  This picture was posted by Sgt.  Grit's FB page and within 11min had 30 comments, most of which were a debate.  The first comment was a woman pissed off that the woman in this picture has the EGA on her back.  It is likely not a tattoo, but drawn on her with the words.  The point being that this Marine wife is standing by her husband.  

However, this simple comment about how this wife has "not earned the EGA," has sparked a lively debated in the comments section.  The debate is twofold.  1. Only service members have the right to wear this type of stuff in ink on their bodies.  And 2.  That somehow the EGA is equal to his rank and that wives have not earned that. 

I will weight in briefly on my thoughts, but am curious as to how you all feel about this woman's statement (in the comments, not the picture and Battle Bare, that has been debated to death already) and the debate it's self.  

I do not feel that I have earned my husbands rank by any stretch of the imagination.  He has fought wars for that rank.  He has seen things I would never care to, done things I can't even think off and been through hell and back.  His rank is 100% his alone and I have no right to argue it, wear it on my body or clothing and definitely no right to throw it around like it entitles me to anything. 
***  I was brought to my attention that I failed as a writer to also include that rank is earned through a lot of ways other than deployments.  Signing the contract, doing your job well, bootcamp and experience, among other things, are all ways to earn rank and are just as valid as any other way to earn rank.  I apologize if I have offended anyone in my poor choice of wording.  Every military service member has earned their rank, and rightfully so.  I still stand that spouses are not included in that, but appreciate that I did not express this well and I'm sorry. 

That all said, I have zero issue with wives wearing things like the EGA.  I have a necklace with it and USMC wife shirts and such all that have it on them.  My husband takes no issue with this (heck, he bought most of them for me).  It's a matter of pride.  Would I get it tattooed on my body?  Probably not, but I don't have any tattoos and the EGA is not high on my list of things to get permanently inked onto my body.  But I guess I don't wholly see how having the tattoo is any different than the hundreds of other things that spouses wear to show pride in the life we lead.  A T-shirt, a bumper sticker, a tattoo, what is really the difference?  I've seen the insignias from every branch of the military etched onto anything that will stand still for sale on bases.  Grandparents, spouses, kids, nieces, nephews, you name the family member and there is some type of item for sale, just for them, with these insignias on them.  So, I supposed, I don't see the issue with a tattoo...  And to be clear, the Marine Corps puts their insignia on EVERYTHING!  LOL!  You'd be hard pressed as a spouse to buy something that DOESN'T have the EGA on it.  So maybe that is why my opinion is what is it.  It's very common place as a USMC spouse to have EGA stuff all over everything.  Heck, you can buy barstools with it on it.  But I digress... 

What are your thoughts?  Is it ok to tattoo this type of thing on your body as a spouse?  

- Please be respectful of me and each other if you are going to voice your opinions.  Any hurtful or mean remarks will not be posted.

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Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Some Quotes for the 4th



Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.

He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself. - Thomas Paine

Life has a certain flavor for those who have fought and risked all that the sheltered and protected can never experience. - John Stuart Mill

War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself. --John Stuart Mill




And for Shits and Giggles: 
"The worst thing you can be is a liar. . . . Okay, fine, yes, the worst thing you can be is a Nazi, but then number two is liar. Nazi one, liar two."- From the book Shit My Dad Says -- Just so you don't forget. :)

Happy Birthday America!  Thanks for being such an awesome place to live!  And thank you to all who have fought for our freedoms, from the Revolution to now.  I will try to live a life that will make you proud and do honor to your service. 




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