B and I leave on Wednesday to go back to Michigan for Christmas. I am nervously checking the weather every hour or so because I’m terrified of anything that will keep us from making it back. It also gives me something to focus on besides the neon elephant hiding in the corner. I’m actually grateful for the drama that Thing One’s fiancee is causing because that’s more distraction from what’s really on my mind.
Y’all, I last saw my family on September 15. It was my Dad’s 65th birthday and I saw them for a couple of hours before launching into my MoH duties for a wedding. We’ve always been a close family. I mean, my family drove 6+ hours round trip in order to have a 2 hour dinner with us. My sister and I would go home every weekend during college and all because we loved spending time with our family. When I went to grad school I hated that I was the only one who was too far away for Sunday afternoon dinners. When I got to pick where to live, I chose to live within an hour of my folks so that I could see them regularly. My Mom and I were big shopping partners and family dinners were a regular occurrence. I never wanted to live far from my family.
Until I met B. He is the game changer in my life. He turned this small town Texas girl into a world traveler. He took this girl who wanted to put down roots and showed her how to thrive without them. He changed everything.
September 15, 2011 was the last time I saw them. I may not see them again until 2014. We move to Turkey in a month. We’ll make one trip to the States for Thing One’s wedding. And that’s probably it. Tickets are too expensive, leave too hard to come by, and we’re just too far away.
And we chose it.
That’s the fluorescent elephant sitting next to me on the couch. I would make the choice again. Because, you see, this choice is selfish. But our two years there are two years that B should not be deployed. Two years away from them so that I don’t have to live without him for six months.
It’s hard to wrap my head around it. Hard to think about not seeing them for so long. Hard to think about all the changes that two years will bring.
But that’s still easier than thinking about B living in a war zone. B facing death without me there to hold him at night. He’s my game changer. He’s my smile. I will do anything and give up anything to stay with him. Even choose two more years at a geographically remote location. Even pick two years too far away from family.
I have to be with him. And that? I can wrap my head around.