Thursday, May 31, 2012

It Won't Happen to Me

Famous last words.

Tonight I had one of those moments that people warn you about during deployment, that moment when you think you're doing fine and something silly happens to remind you he's gone and it hits you all over again like a ton of bricks. I've heard people saying that a song came on the radio or they tripped over his boots, little things like that trigger this meltdown. I consider myself pretty good at switching into an "independent" mode and didn't think something like that would happen to me, especially as I've been really busy the last few weeks and have been doing pretty well, I thought. 

Turns out I'm not immune. And it was so silly. E is a computer genius. It's basically his job to be really, really good at all things computer. As such, I'm used to having him around to fix my problems and complete any and all tasks above my basic skill level. Need something elaborately reformatted? He fixes it. Need to adjust the complex home internet network he set up for us? Done. He tries to make me learn but usually it's easier and quicker for him to just do it, and I don't object. Anything from my phone deciding to show nothing but a bright green screen (true story) to manipulating files gets fixed effortlessly by him. 

So I want to send him a file thats too big to e-mail. Okay, I compress it, right? Except for I have absolutely NO IDEA HOW TO DO THAT. I google and try for a couple minutes, getting inordinately frustrated and upset and suddenly I'm a mess of tears and its no longer about the file but about him not being here. 

And that is how it happened to me. Just when I was sure I was doing alright. 

I will say I was surprised at how angry I was getting at not being able to fix this, feeling way past frustration, and it is a very rare thing for me to truly get angry. I am an exceedingly calm and patient person, and for me to so violently lose it in a matter of minutes is virtually unheard of in my adult life. 

Luckily, one of his friends helped me solve the problem. I was laughing and crying at the simple solution and joking about E; laughing at how he would see this silly situation, and crying at wishing he could see it. 

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Post-Grad Adventures

A few snapshots of the past couple weeks:

Hoodie Allen Concert at the Crocodile in Seattle

Roomie and I at Million Dollar Quartet in Seattle

Celebratory Graduation Champagne!

Brother and I at Margot & The Nuclear So & So's, same venue as Hoodie

Roomie and I at Margot

Brother on the ferry to Victoria, B.C.

Butchart Gardens

Street art in Victoria

Afternoon Tea!

Legislative Building in Victoria

Capilano Suspension Bridge in Vancouver

Tree walk

Sea Wall in Stanley Park, Vancouver

Canada was super fun and beautiful, and now I'm back home in the SF Bay! Looking forward to seeing more of my friends and family, and I did get the nannying job, so I'm excited to start that!

I sent off a themed care package over a week ago and am still waiting for E to get it, but when he does, pictures will be posted! I'm also moving out of my house in the very near future, so it's going to be hectic around here for the next few weeks!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

One Month: A Brief Update

Hi from Canada!

I've been a bit absent, as I've been packing and traveling. Pictures will be up as soon as I get back to a decent internet connection. My mom, brother and I went to Victoria, B.C. and are now in Vancouver, which is an amazingly beautiful city. Tomorrow is our last day here, and I'll be back to the Seattle area tomorrow night. Thursday we pack up my apartment and Friday we haul all of my stuff back to sunny California. I have an interview for a full time nanny position Sunday, so I hope that works out, I really need to start making and saving some $$.

This weekend marked one month of E being deployed. I'm in the mindset now that we have a decent chunk of time behind us, which has given us some momentum to just keep powering through. No other choice really. I think accepting that I have NO control over the situation is the hardest part for me, but it's really started to sink in. As such, I've adopted the attitude of "just keep going". Obviously, I can't end this, so I have no choice but to focus on what I'm doing and just keep moving forward. Plus, I've done some pretty awesome stuff in the last month, graduating from college, a soccer prom fundraiser, a movie, two concerts, a vacation, and a play! Again, pictures to come. Looks like I got a good start on my Deployment To-Do list =D

E and I have had decent communication. With his iPad and my iPhone we can iMessage, which is helpful as trying to text via Google voice was difficult, because there was a sometimes lengthy delay in sending, which was frustrating. We've also been able to FaceTime a little bit, though hopefully with more frequency in the weeks and months to come. It is so much easier to see them, their expressions, hear their voice. Much more normal than looking at little words on a screen. I am grateful, so grateful, for technology. I can't imagine what this would be like even twenty years ago. 

See you guy back in the States!

Friday, May 11, 2012


Today I finished college and it is totally surreal. It seriously hasn't sunk in, my body is holding on to the stress, and I feel like I should be completing another essay or doing homework....but there's nothing. Maybe it will hit home in a couple days? Maybe when I move? I don't know. For now I'm trying to just relax, because after this week (73 pages of essays?!?! And two tests!!) I'm exhausted.

On another level, I really wish E was here, to hug me and celebrate with me and all that good stuff, and it really sucks he has to miss such a turning point in my life. I know he is upset about it as well, but theres nothing we can do about it. For now I guess I will celebrate with friends, stick to my deployment to-do list (concerts coming up, YES!) and carry on. 

I really miss him though. Today was hard.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Phone Calls

E has been gone for nearly 3 weeks and I've had exactly one phone call....which made my fucking day! Communicating through things like e-mail, text, and Facebook chat are really frustrating. There's a lot of room for miscommunication, and that gets really tiring. Its much different when your significant other can fight with you, and then hug you to take away the sting....without that, its much harder to resolve things satisfactorily. I guess I didn't really think about that aspect going into this, and we didn't make communication expectations very clear, which perhaps would have been helpful.

E and I are a strong couple, and I have no doubt we will make it through this and beyond, but establishing expectations for this deployment would have eliminated the communication misfires and cut down on the mutual frustration. I highly suggest talking this stuff out before deployment begins. We are working through it, and oh man does being able to talk on the phone make so much of a difference! Hearing their voice, having a more normalized conversation is 100000x better than typing to eachother. Hearing the emotion, their voice, its much easier to respond to each other correctly. And I've never appreciated it so much.

Just something to think about.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Care Package #2 - Hoping Time Flies

As soon as I sent off my corgi package, of COURSE he e-mails me asking for some specific items, namely his x-box controller, some lotion, and face wipes. So I had one evening to quickly pull this package together, without a pre-meditated theme. I chose some scrapbook paper I had in my stock, and lined the inside, and just left it plain in the interest of time. I wrote (not pictured) on the bottom, which is supposed to look like a chalkboard, that I hoped time would fly, etc.  

This was what was going into the package, but it needed some work.

I double bagged the lotion in case of spillage, bubble wrapped and bagged the controller just to be safe, and put the giant Costco trail mix into snack baggies, which I then placed into a gallon size ziploc, so he could take a small bag of it and go. Much more convenient, I thought. I also wrote some great memories in a couple greeting cards and tied them with white curling ribbon. 

These items I decided were okay on their own

All packed in nice and tight! And of course I put a couple layers of bubble wrap over the top of it all, because I know this package may have to bear a lot of weight in transit, and I don't want my items getting crushed of course.

And thats it! A quick, last minute, late night, throw together of a care package!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Corgi Care Package #1!

Well, it took exactly a week for this care package to reach E, so without further ado, my corgi-meme themed care package, to honor my boyfriend's obsession with the breed and the internet.

 One large flat-rate box (with customs forms, of course!) After this picture was taken I addressed it and used clear packing tape to seal EVERYTHING. I went maybe a little overboard...

 Bubble wrap to protect the contents, and a pack of the cards shown here

Sticky notes explaining contents

A stand-in for the corgi puppy we will get when he gets home

All carefully packed in!

Favorite snacks, silly fun things, and practical stuff like his beloved hand sanitizer

I simply covered the inside of the box with scrapbook paper. 5 sheets fits neatly, with only a little trimming on my part for two of the flaps. Next, I printed pictures I found online of corgis and corgi-memes, and glued them over the scrapbook paper. I followed that with some paw print scrapbook decals and lettering stickers to add a little extra oomph. I got everything on sale or with coupons at Michael's, so it was very inexpensive to do. And voila!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


I've now sent 2 care packages and am about to send a third, but decided not to post their content/design online until E receives them. I think it will take about ten days to get there, but we'll see! I'm excited for one to arrive so I have an idea of a timetable and can perhaps start including baked goods/homemade treats with the help of a vacuum sealer. It all depends on how long packages actually take to reach him to see if that will be a possibility in the future. I LOVE to bake and cook, so I really hope it will be something I can do for him, cause I know he misses my cooking ;)

Only one box was of the meticulously thought out variety, the second was thrown together in one night after a text from E requesting certain items. The third box will be much of the same, though I did learn some tips and tricks for packaging that I will be sharing soon!

As for how I'm doing, I think the worst thing about this so far is the utter disruption of my routine. With him gone, I'm not quite sure what to do with myself all the time, although finals start next week, so school will be all consuming for at least a little while. After that, I'm moving back to California, where E has not been a part of my daily life, so it will be easier to deal with, I think. 

I've been without him for up to a month before, so this part doesn't feel so awful, it's mostly the knowledge that it wont end in another two will keep going for another several months...and that is, frankly, quite depressing.