Tuesday, August 19, 2008

It's Official

So it’s official. (Actually it was official a week ago, but I think I needed some time to consider what that meant.) My daughter, Sevilla, has been selected to deploy for 365 days. I’m not going to say where she's going, or what she’ll be doing, since I have no idea what is (or isn’t) covered by OPSEC (operational security, for those of you who don’t speak military acronyms). She won’t deploy for a while, so I have some time to get used to the idea; but she will deploy.

Now being who I am, I’ve already started looking at the practical impacts of her deployment. Sevilla’s a single parent, so obviously the biggest concern was her daughter. Of course, we will be ready, willing, and able to look after the Princess while her mom is serving her country. It won’t be much of a change, since the Princess lives with us anyway. She’ll attend the same school. She’ll sleep in the same bed. She’ll enhance the lives of her Grandparents; just like she does now. The only difference will be that her mom will be away for a while. I’ve already started to make plans on how to minimize the impact to the Princess. Sevilla and I have already considered a blog for the Princess (restricted to family and friends) as a way for her to post her thoughts and pictures and “stuff” in order to communicate with her mom. I also know that communication these days is quite different from when I was a kid and my dad had to rely on flimsy airmail paper and reel-to-reel tapes to communicate with his family. With the internet, email, webcams, and telephones, it should be fairly easy for Sevilla to keep in touch with the Princess. I also know, though, that it’s not the same and that my husband and I will have to try to fill a place in the Princess’ life that can be filled by only her mother. From the practical side, it will be tough; but thousands of kids, mothers, and grandparents have already dealt with a deployed parent and survived. We will, too.

Being who I am, I’m having a lot more trouble dealing with the “inside” impact. I’m not sure why. After all, my husband and my son have already deployed, and I was able to deal with their deployment (eventually). I know that I am proud of her and her choice to serve. I know that I think she’s doing the right thing for the right reasons. I know that I envy her the chance to do something that both of us consider very important. What I don’t know is how I really “feel” about it. For some reason, I seem to have decided not to feel. I don’t know why. Perhaps it is because there is still some time before she actually leaves. Perhaps it is because I know it will be difficult for me. All I know is that I don’t want to “feel” anything about Sevilla deploying to a dangerous place until I have to. Is it a defense mechanism? Maybe. I just know that when I do allow myself to “feel,” those feelings will be extremely complex and will cover a wide-range of emotions. In the meantime, I’ll continue to plan for the practical “outside” aspects of Sevilla’s deployment and try to let the “inside” aspects sort themselves out. I’ve was able to do it when I watched my son go off to war. I can do it again as I prepare for my daughter to do the same.


Sevillalost said...

I think you know, I hope you know how much your support means to me. Without you and Dad, I wouldn't be able to fulfill my commitment to serve. I couldn't ask for anyone better with whom to leave my Princess. I hope you know that too.

If you're proud of me, Mom, know that I cherish that, deeply. I hope I can validate that pride by my actions.

I love you.


lela said...

Sevilla, you know that I love you, too. MOM

Anonymous said...

Brings a tear to my eye to see a family so committed to our country and to sacrifice so much and ask for nothing in return. I hope the words you each write of one another are spoken to each other.

David M said...

The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the - Web Reconnaissance for 08/20/2008 A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention, updated throughout the day...so check back often.

Grama36 said...

I am so proud of you Lela and you Sevilla along with the rest of my family. It was hard enough to send my husband off to war I don't know how I would have handled the inside impact part if I didn't have you kids to keep me steady. I really do not know how I would have handled it if I had to send one of my children.. Now I am sending my grandchildren..

I am proud of my family's service and commitment to this country.
Love all of you

Aunty2 said...

Sevilla, I will leave this post here because I want the entire WORLD to know how much you and your family are loved. You were my flower girl at my wedding which gives you a special place in my heart, you are now and always have been my favorite niece named "Sevilla" (of course I have other favorite nieces and nephew named other things so-no gloating) Serving your country and your fellow man is one of the greatest commitments you can make and you (and the whole family) do it whole-heartedly. Even though there are some of us who chose to serve (and cheer the troops on) from the sidelines, we as a family had our parents and grand-parents examples to live up to! And what great examples they are, (Once a Military Brat, Always a Military Brat!)Be safe. We will keep things ready for your (and your comrades-in-arms) safe return. Prayers with you always! Love Aunty2