Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Keeping Your Sanity even When Everything Breaks During Deployment

My last post was about the "Cruise Curse" and how everything breaks while he is gone. For some reason the cruise curse has hit me hard this time around and the problems keep flying at me week after week. My husband recently mused that I was having a harder cruise than I had in the past to which I thought - what, no, this is easy!

photo credit: ashley rose, via photopin cc
My first deployment was one of the hardest, most difficult experiences of my entire life. When something like the car broke down or my heater went out, it wasn't something I knew how to deal with. I would end up on the floor screaming at the top my lungs, my face riddled with tears and sweat.

Married mere months before he left, I didn't live on base, I had no friends, I had no family nearby, no understanding of the purpose of the FRG or Ombudsmen, no understanding of Navy spouse support programs, and I WAS ALONE, in every sense of the word. 

After years of deployments and cruise curses, I now know how to handle such situations. So, I'm happy to report that deployments get easier. I can deal with emergencies without having a full out meltdown, and I'm damn proud of that.

However, if you are in a place where the only thing you know how to do in an emergency is breakdown, then I say breakdown! Let it out. Cry. Cry your heart out, and when you have no more tears to give, pick yourself up, remind yourself that you can do this and that you are strong.

With each emergency you power through, pat yourself on the back. Give yourself a congrats - do not beat yourself up for crying before you could deal, and keep in mind the next one will be a little easier and the one after that even easier, until you are at point where you can shrug and go with it.

Never feel bad for crying, always give yourself props for making it through, and do your best to try to look at the bright side: 

Ten Bright Side Things I've Learned to Do in the First Two Months of My Hubby's Deployment - Thanks Cruise Curse!

photo credit: brianjmatis
 via photopin cc

1. How to remove a virus from my computer. No more pop-ups! I'm still getting viagra emails though. =/

2. How to pick glass out of the garbage disposal - while screaming! I conquered the crap out of that fear!

3. How to only do laundry once every two weeks. Geese - he really changes his socks like twice a day.

4. How to adopt a stray cat – the secret – give them food!

5.  How to install a wireless router. Took six hours on the phone with tech support but I did it dang it!

photo credit: Rob Ireton
 via photopin cc
6. How to mow my own lawn . . . by hiring a gardener! =)

7. How to use that mail merge thing on the computer all by myself! For something so convenient they sure went to a lot of trouble making set-up difficult!

8. How to keep the house clean – secret not having to clean up after him!

9. How to shut off a portion of my sprinklers when there is a leak. 

photo credit: Toni Blay 
via photopin cc
10. How to survive without access to the internet, television, or a cell phone - all at the same time!!! The answer was wine!

Bonus:   Realizing the strongest women in the world do cry . . . shamelessly! 

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About Stephanie Carroll
U&E Founder & Author
Buy Her Book A White Room!
Photo by Randy Enriquez
I dated and married my husband in 2004 when I was 19. I felt like an outsider for the first half of our marriage. He didn't understand what I needed to know about the Navy, and I didn't know what to ask.

After ten years of learning in the Navy, I founded Unhinged & Empowered. I wanted to spread the knowledge that I needed when I was new, to reveal what took years for me to learn.   
Cover Design by Jenny Q
In addition to being a Navy Wife, I am also a novelist. I write historical women's fiction.

My first novel A White Room debuted in 2013 and is about a woman forced to sacrifice her own ambitions of becoming a nurse to marry a man who can save her destitute family. He moves her to a strange, small town where she slowly succumbs to madness until she stumbles on an opportunity to nurse to the poor despite the fact that her husband prosecutes unlicensed practitioners.

Learn more at and connect with me @CarrollBooks on Twitter, Facebook, or on Pinterest!

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