Word of the day: Perspective.
To be honest, it's more like word of the month...if not word of the deployment. Perspective changes everything from how you judge a situation to how others judge you. Lately, that's become painfully more apparent. Someone I grew up loving and have recently reconnected with misjudged me and I misjudged her because we both thought we knew the other but we didn't-funny how that seems to happen in this era of social networking. We knew what others had said and what we remember from twenty years ago but we don't really know each other so we both put our own biases in the way of actually getting to know each other again. Thankfully, she came to me and we both realized our individual perspectives were skewed so now we're starting from scratch and getting to know each other all over again.
I'd love to say that this situation is a prime example of how I live my life but it's not. Often, I fall back to the easy route...the route where I choose to be judgmental and self-pitying (is that a word??? well, it is now). But, I'm really going to make an effort to change my perspective.
Take for example...since it's the biggest thing in my life right now...this deployment and all the
Murphy's Law inevitabilities special circumstances that have come along with it...
*Halfway through a high risk pregnancy when Joshua (the hubby) left:
I could focus on the fact that I had as many as FOUR doctor appointments per week, all of which were at least 45 mins away
I could change my perspective and be thankful that I was still pregnant...that I didn't have another miscarriage.
*Delivered our daughter without my husband by my side:
I could fall apart every time I look at the hospital pics
I could be thankful that he was able to skype in with a mostly clear connection.
*Months and months...and more months without Joshua
I could pout...eat massive amounts of junk food...spend money inappropriately...or any other number of destructive things to take my mind off missing him
I could be thankful that we have an approximate come-home date....nothing specific so don't ask...but we know that there is a limit to how long he'll be gone-that hasn't always been the case for service members in wartime.
The biggest lesson on perspective (with regards to deployment especially) came, ironically, on Joshua's R&R at Disney World. Joshua was taking the kids (yes, both) to the bathroom while I sat and enjoyed more of the food and wine festival in Epcot. An older gentleman sat down next to me and we started talking...funny how that happens at Disney World but that's for another post. He was a retired Vietnam Vet Army Officer. He told me about when he came home from the war. His wife and their two children-a two year old daughter and 1 year old son he was meeting for the first time, met him at the airport. During the entire deployment, he was only able to call home twice. Both calls were short and full of static. And at the airport, his wife and kids walked beside him and watched as people spit on him and called him a murderer.
I hate this stupid deployment but it could be so much worse.