Thoughts of New Year’s Resolutions past

As the year comes to a close, I’ve been thinking a lot about how my resolutions differ from year to year.
I have several scraps of paper floating around my house with notes and scribbles trying to discern why.

I’ve finally come to realize that the years I’ve spent as a Military Spouse, seem to fall into two categories.

Maintain apart and Learning together

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In December of 2004 we were married… so 2005 was the beginning of our life together.

Learning how to cook, maintain a budget with two debit cards, and the experience of our first pregnancy.

In November of that year, Seth deployed when I was 33 weeks pregnant.

2005 New Year’s Resolutions were for Learning to be married together.

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In December of 2005, Jacob was born while Seth was deployed…

2006 was a year of learning to be a parent and maintaining our marriage via letters and a phone call every 2 weeks.

2006 New Year’s Resolutions were to Maintain our family while apart.

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In October 2006, Seth redeployed home.

2007 was learning to be a family again and sharing the experience of our second pregnancy.

2007 New Year’s Resolutions were to Learn together how to be a family of 3 and then 4.

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In December of 2007, we moved to Germany.

2008 was moving into our apartment, unpacking boxes, and learning to live in a foreign country

In April of that year, Seth deployed again for 14 months.

2008 New Year’s Resolutions were to Maintain our family while apart.

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In December of 2008, Seth was home for R&R leave – and we became pregnant with #3.

2009 was the last 5 months of a deployment, reintegration, and a new baby.

2009 New Year’s Resolutions were to Maintain our family while apart.

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January of 2010 I blogged about my New Year’s Resolutions.

Writing. Photography. Blogging. Fitness. Fashion.

It was a very stable time for our family.

2010 New Year’s Resolutions were to Learn together how to be a family of 5 and personal growth.

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Then in August of that year, we learned we would be stop moved.

Instead of moving in December, we would stay here for yet another deployment.

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So in January of 2011, once again I found myself taking deep breaths like a deep sea diver loading up on oxygen as we prepared for yet another separation, this time to Afghanistan. This year, much like other seasons of time during a deployment, I’ve tried to maintain a household and our family solo. Planning meals, keeping up with laundry, trying to participate in school activities, as well as try to make a difference in our community by attending town hall meetings and participating in our family readiness group.  Keep busy, stay positive, and try to help others in the same boat.

I remember sitting in a Bible study group before the deployment where everyone shared their goals for the deployment.
I remember saying simply that my goals were to maintain.

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And yet I wonder…

Is this normal?
Is this how life is for everyone?
Are these experiences unique to military life?

Do others also have New Year’s Resolutions that include “to maintain” for their family?

{This post has been linked to 5Minutes for Mom’s New Year’s Resolutions}

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About Ann Marie @ Household6 Diva

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13 Responses to “Thoughts of New Year’s Resolutions past”

  1. Karen Greenberg Says:

    I am not a military wife, and I could not imagine what you go through. Thank you for doing that for us so your husband can do what he does. I think you are awesome!

    I DO have a goal of maintaining sometimes. I think life as a family always has its ups and downs, no matter the situation. Some years are crazy busy, others are smooth sailing. This year I was very sick for most of the year, and my goal for 2012 is to, simply put, maintain. I think that’s a great way to put it. This year I want to focus on our life as a family and hopefully not have to worry about the ups and downs of MY life. I hope that makes sense.
    Karen Greenberg recently posted..Wordless Wednesday- December 28My Profile

  2. Julie Says:

    I find myself going into “maintain” mode during deployments too. I do want to grow and work on things but I also don’t want to fall apart. 2012 is going to be an interesting year for us. No deployments (unless the Army changes its mind) and no moves or Pcing. Also no new babies. It should be interesting.
    Julie recently posted..Top 10 Posts of 2011My Profile

  3. Tara O'Rourke Says:

    Before I was a military life, there were times in our lives that I had to “maintain” and learn to live with or without my hubby. They aren’t quite the same as a life with a deployment but the concept was the same. I almost lost my hubby in 2000…he asked for a divorce. In the end, we both had to learn to live with one another again. We came out stronger. God always causes good to come out of my bad experiences.

    I don’t do New Year’s Resolutions. I do make goals as I go through the year so maybe that is the same thing…I just don’t have a list on Jan 1st.

    This year, I will experience my first time with hubby away. He’s not deploying as we had planned but doing a Hardship Tour instead. we did this for stabilization so our 17 year old could graduate from the local school district in 2013. I know that I’ll be fine through this time but it does scare me. I also realize that my hubby’s MOS causes him to not be available even when he’s around…so I cannot expect him to be able to help me throughout the work week year around. Sometimes I think this is worse than him just being GONE. I guess I can let you know. ;)
    Tara O’Rourke recently posted..Touched my heartMy Profile

  4. Angie Says:

    Anne Marie, it is normal for others but then again, it’s not! Maintaining during the year is how a lot of people handle life’s hills/valleys, high tides/low tides, etc. (I rarely pray for specific things but to be able to embrace life and all that comes with it as it happens). For servicemembers and their families it’s different; because of your military lifestyle and what it means to be in the military today, what you describe isn’t ‘normal’. Your hills are higher and have a brighter sun on them and your valleys are lower and can feel darker, you have to have a special, different mindset to maintain those mountains.

  5. Shell Says:

    What a great post. I think we all do what we have to just to get through a year, but it has to be so much harder when your husband is deployed (or works away from home for long stretches.) I freak out when my hubby is gone for a week and really admire your strength. Sending you happy thoughts for 2012!

  6. ruthie Says:

    Wow, what a whirlwind! You are one strong mama to get through all this! But then we military wives don’t have a choice, right?

  7. Angie Says:

    I was just reading this out loud to my husband. It makes me wonder if others outside the military life realize that you have lived a lifetime in 6 years. Man.

  8. Koko @ Koko Likes Says:

    I really enjoyed reading this post. So amazing to see how your little family has grown and become closer to one another. Such a sweet sweet read. Happy New Year!
    Koko @ Koko Likes recently posted..What I Ate Wednesday 27My Profile

  9. the whyte house Says:

    with training, school and deployment, i should have about 5 weeks with my husband next yr. though he spent a good deal gone this year, too, i’ve still been able to depend on him to do “boy things” for me. my goals this year include accomplishing tasks i’ve always depending on him to do:
    change the air filter, take the Lab to the vet, find a good handyman to help w the bigger stuff. right now i’m dealing w our only vehicle being on “holiday break” and getting it repaired. i’m not excited to see him go, but i know that it will make me a better person. i’m too lazy when he’s here and i depend on him to do things that i can do myself. i can’t wait to see what i am capable of doing on my own…including taking on the ombudsman spot for our NOSC! i may even bite the bullet and get my wisdom teeth out while he’s gone. lol.
    the whyte house recently posted..little faces.My Profile

  10. Mandy- Mommy Cracked Says:

    My husband had a job that keeps him away from home most of the time. I’ve come to learn that what’s normal for us is not for most. Maintaining is our way of life, but it’s a good life, nonetheless. It’s definitely made me stronger and more independent, something I needed to learn how to be anyway. I wish you and your family well this new year. Take care!
    Mandy- Mommy Cracked recently posted..FUN New Year’s ResolutionsMy Profile

  11. Paige Says:

    Lordy, You have your hands full lady. Bless you and your family this year. My hubby and I were dating during his deployments and maintain was my main word. Just maintain an even strain. I learned alot about myself and other women around me. Now that he is a civilian we have a newer challenge, he is a pilot and we have deployments of a different sort where he is gone sometimes for several weeks and then home for one and then back out. I took up running to keep me sane especially when things break or I had to learn new skills like finally driving a standard. Do I think maintain is a bad thing? NO. Maintain is sometimes the best you can do. Learn, Grow, Be, breathe, believe.
    Paige recently posted..What is on my nightstand? Dec.27thMy Profile

  12. Cindi @ Moomettes Magnificents Says:

    I was fortunate to have family close by to help out, and am amazed at the wonderful support system that military families extend to one another. My goal this year is to enjoy life and my family more with my grandkids
    Cindi @ Moomettes Magnificents recently posted..A New You in a New Year | Best Stress Relief | Laughter and Health |My Profile

  13. jessica @peekababy Says:

    Wow–I can’t even imagine what you go through! I get annoyed when my husband can’t get home for dinnertime…
    jessica @peekababy recently posted..New Year’s Resolutions for 2012My Profile