I'm cracking, you guys.
You know the kind of splitting that happens when only one part of you is getting air time. When the rest of you is pushed under the rug, swept under your skin until it can't breathe anymore.
I'm proud of the job I do as a SAHM. I'm also proud of the way I've carried the load when my husband has been away either on deployment or on his new work schedule (2 weeks/month is the new post deployment work schedule - boo, hiss, snarl.)
I don't live close to any one family member, mine or my husband's. The closest family member is my mom and she's one hour away on a good day.
To say I miss my family is an understatement. By nature, I'm a home body and love to be around the people I love the most.
In one sense, summer time makes it easy to ignore the part of me who misses my family. We are so busy. Busy with daily action and reactions. Days filled to the tippy top with to dos and already did 'ems. Going here and coming back home from there just so the children will "sleep well tonight."
When 4pm finally arrives, I am typically flattened somewhere trying to make it until my husband gets home, or if he's out of town, I am exhaling and waiting for the sun to climb down from the sky.
But then I start to crack. And the other parts of me begin to make noise.
The other day my big brother had a birthday and we were invited over to his place to celebrate.
It was the first time in a very long while that my family (not in its entirety as that would be an episode of Amazing Race) got together in a relaxed atmosphere. It was wonderful to see everyone smiling and chatting in person.
I could see new laugh lines and summer tans. Hear familiar voices and study the faces of all my loved ones.
It felt awesome to watch the cousins play together and make memories that we can all relive in pictures.
It was tremendous to see my husband as Uncle Andy.
And just as flipping cool to watch my own brother as Uncle Eric. (Abby bonked her head and Uncle Eric picked her up right away to soothe her.)
It was long overdue.
I have been trying to love my life as strong, resilient, can-and-will-conquer-it-all SAHM/military spouse but the rest of me won't be pressed down forver. They are pushing out, demanding oxygen, air time, and simple validation.
Nobody can live alone as a mother and a wife. Believe me, I've tried. The other parts of your persona resurface eventually. And then you remember:
I am a sister.
A woman who refuses to let the other parts of her die without a damn good fight.