Wednesday, November 13, 2013

What Every Navy Wife & Navy Girlfriend Should Do to Make Deployments Easier

What do you think of the new look? It’s much more simplistic and less busy. I know it doesn't quite scream unhinged as it did before but the idea is that you can read it easier. The unhinged is still there in the Navy Wives & Girlfriends writing and reading this blog. ; ) I hope you like it. Let me know what you think!

I’m so very excited to introduce a new guest blogger to Unhinged Navy Wives & Girlfriends! Nanette is a Canadian Naval Officer’s Wife, mother, teacher, and blogger at The Sailor’s Woman. Her husband is currently deployed in Afghanistan. 

She is the second international Navy Wife Blogger to join us here which is so very exciting. The idea that Navy Wives and Girlfriends from multiple countries all over the world can come together in support and strength is so amazing. 

I hope you all take a moment to welcome her either in the comments section here or on our Facebook Forum, and enjoy her fabulous first post, which gives some very good advice on how to make a deployment easier.  Don’t forget to click on over to The Sailor’s Woman and check out and support her blog.

What Every Navy Wife & Navy Girlfriend Should Do to Make Deployments Easier
By Nanette

Although we’re used to separations, every deployment is different.  I’m not just missing my sailor, I’m anxious about him.  When I worry I don’t sleep, and it gets harder to manage.  Since hibernating until his return is not an option, I’ve come up with a few coping strategies that boil down to the most important rule of all.

   De-Clutter Your To-Dos
Not your house, although if you have the energy for it, that’s liberating, too.  De-clutter your responsibilities.  Cut any non-essential commitments that aren’t fun.  Be ruthless here.  You’re protecting your precious mental health and reducing stress.

 I dropped an online social psychology course.  Although it was fascinating, the readings, video lectures, assignments and quizzes were dragging me down.  I’m an education junkie and I’ve never quit a class before, but it was cathartic to withdraw.  There will be other courses after my sailor comes home. 

Obviously things like feeding the kids and getting the dog vaccinated are non-negotiable.  Look to those things that aren’t vital to the well-being of your family and ditch them if they bring more grief than joy.

   Prioritize Fun
"Baking is hands-down a higher
priority than housework."
Remember the days before TiVo?  If, like most people, you didn’t know how to program your VCR and “The Walking Dead” was on at the same time as “Downton Abbey,” you had to decide which one you wanted to see.  You couldn’t watch both. 

With stress levels through the roof and your energy depleted, you can’t do as much as when your husband was safe at home.  These days I rarely dust, and I can’t remember the last time I vacuumed, but I bake cookies every Sunday.  Not only do I find baking relaxing, but my boy loves homemade cookies.  Baking is hands-down a higher priority than housework.

   Out Source the Tough Stuff
Some things can’t be ignored for the six or eight months of a deployment.  If you’re a neater person than me, dust bunnies might fall into this category.  For me it’s yard work, but lawn mowers frighten me.  (Surely I’m not the only one with a friend of a friend who lost several fingers in a horrific lawn mower incident.)  When the grass grew tall enough that we risked losing our Chihuahua in the back yard, I hired a gardener to mow it.  Sure it’s a little extra money, but it’s worth it because it takes something I hate off my never ending to do list.

The most important survival rule of all?
Do not, I repeat DO NOT feel guilty about adopting any of the above strategies to make this experience easier on you.  With a husband in a war zone, you’re under a level of stress few others understand.  It’s okay to take a few short cuts or let standards slip a little. 

Be kind to yourself!
About Nanette
Hi, I’m Nanette.  Like most women, I wear many hats.  I’m a mom, a teacher, a blogger at The Sailor’s Woman and a Canadian Naval Officer’s wife.  In June my husband left for Afghanistan.  Before going overseas he was out of the province for about six weeks training for his adventure.  It’s been a long haul and it’s not over.


  1. Hey Nanette. Welcome to the site! I enjoyed your post, and I totally agree about taking steps to make your life more manageable while your other half is away. I hired a gardner too! I hope your husband's deployment goes well.

    1. Hi Amy, Thank you for your comment. We're at the point in the deployment where I can almost see the light at the end of tunnel. It can't come soon enough! It's tough keeping things together even with a gardener. Nanette

  2. Hi Amy, Thank you for your comment. We're at the point in the deployment where I can almost see the light at the end of the tunnel. It can't come soon enough. It's tough holding everything together--even with a gardener! Nanette


I love, love your comments and questions! Just remember to not mention any security info about your Sailor! Thank you!

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