::Sigh:: The dreaded day finally arrived. My hubby deployed. In my ugly crying stupor, I began to wonder what women back in WWII did when their hubbies/boyfriends deployed. Thinking about my grandpa deploying for 2 years (with no coming home for R&R) makes my crying over a 4 month deployment seem a bit…sad **pun intended**
So what did women do back then? Here’s my 5 retro tips for handling deployment:
See friends – get together with other wives/girlfriends whose men are deployed. There’s no substitution for a solid support system. Have a tea party at your house. This seems juvenile, but it doesn’t have to be. Offer all kinds of teas, including spiked teas ::wink wink::, and have various finger foods from tea sandwiches to macarons. Play “French Cafe” on Pandora and talk and laugh. If there’s kids, have some toys and games set up they can play with.
Concentrate on the home – This is one of my favorite things to do when my husband is gone training for a long time or deployed! I make a game plan to get the house super organized and clean. This includes getting it decorated and homey and cozy. The last part is the fun part, but knowing how I want the house decorated helps me declutter. Go through the house, room by room, and donate anything that doesn’t make you happy or that you don’t use/need. Then, do a nice, deep cleaning. Open the windows (if it’s not the dead of winter) and air everything out. Shop some local thrift stores and find some vintage decor to bring a little retro into your home. Light some magnificent candles. After you’re all finished, sit back and relax in your beautiful house and have a glass of wine.
Send (and receive) handwritten letters – There’s nothing more retro than a handwritten letter from your soldier! There’s something incredibly romantic about it. And it’s something your kids and grandkids will love to see. Sometimes this can be pretty difficult for our soldiers. My husband had to jump through hoops to send me a letter! Email was much easier. But, I still sent him letters (separate from the care packages I sent), and he finally was able to send me one letter, which I cherish so much! Keep them in a special box (envelope and all).
Read – Once the kids are in bed and the dishes done, sit down with an adult beverage and open a book. I’ve been reading Holocaust survivor memoirs like it’s my job. But I can’t put them down. Not only that, reading how some couples were separated for years makes my situation much less daunting! A recommendation of a great novel about WWII wives/friends and their stories is (cheesily) called “Next to Love” by Ellen Feldman. You can pick it up on Amazon here:
Learn a new skill – Crocheting anyone? While the hubby is away, why not learn a useful, retro skill? Get gourmet with your cooking. Crochet your family some beanies and scarves. Learn how to grow and arrange beautiful flowers. The options are limitless! Throw yourself into it. Get the kids involved even. Make it fun and exciting! You’ll be proud of yourself, and your husband will be proud too!
What do you do to make the deployment time pass quickly? Let’s chat!