Deployment Week: Packing, Pictures and Prayers

My husband Jeff, me, Josh, and his wife, Alison, at dinner Saturday night.

We are down to the final week before my son leaves for his third deployment since he enlisted in the Army in June of 2005.  Josh spent two twelve-month tours in Iraq and will spend the next year in Afghanistan.

Josh and his wife, Alison, have been extremely busy the past few weeks; there are many things to do in preparation for being gone a full year.  Alison resigned her employment so she could spend every possible minute with Josh before he leaves.  She told me that the few weeks prior to deployment are the hardest for her because each day she wakes up dreading that it is one day closer to saying good-bye.

I feel the same way.  When he deploys we all go into “deployment mode”,  which means we must be very proactive with controlling our emotions, not overreacting to news, keeping busy,  and praying a lot more.

Josh and Alison from their pre-deployment pictures.

Two weeks ago, they had their pre-deployment pictures done and I was able to participate.  This was bittersweet: while it was fun to see different poses, emotions, and faces (especially with Josh who can be quite a challenge for picture-taking), it was sad when I thought about why it is so important to have fresh pictures before a soldier goes to war.

Alison will be spending the next year with her parents in Montana.  The house she and Josh own in Colorado Springs has been rented to another couple transferring back to Fort Carson.  Last week was moving week and all of their belongings are now in my basement except for the personal items that Alison will take with her.  They will spend their last week together–until mid-tour leave–in a hotel close to Fort Carson as Josh still has to work this week.

Their dog, Ginger, is here with me and she too will  miss Josh terribly the next year.  When Josh deployed to Iraq the last time, Ginger whined for weeks and would wait by the door for him to come home.

Ginger - their dog who is now with me.

My husband, Jeff, and I enjoyed dinner with Josh and Alison the past two nights.  We live an hour and a half away from them, so I won’t see Josh again until this weekend–when he leaves for his deployment.

I am so thankful to have Military Families Ministry to keep me focused this deployment.  I have established close personal relationships with so many military families over the past couple years and we support each other through deployments.

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Reminder: Registration for Coupon Boot Camp is Today

Registration for Army Wife Network‘s Coupon Boot Camp will open tonight (Monday, 6 June 2011) during the Army Wife Talk Radio Show at 8 p.m. EST.

You can learn more at the Loving A Soldier’s announcement website where you’re also invited to post about couponing, saving money or comment if you’ve never tried it before but would like to.

A reminder there is room for only 50 free registrants who are asked to commit to all four sessions.

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