06 October 2009


nerve- /nɜrv/ [nurv] noun, verb, nerved, nerv-ing.
1. one or more bundles of fibers forming part of a system that conveys impulses of sensation, motion, etc., between the brain or spinal cord and other parts of the body.
2. a sinew or tendon: to strain every nerve.
3. firmness or courage under trying circumstances: an assignment requiring nerve.
4. boldness; audacity; impudence; impertinence: He had the nerve to say that?
5. nerves, nervousness: an attack of nerves.
6. a line, or one of a system of lines, extending across something.

Yup. That's me. Now that the panic, worry, angst, trepidation and general insanity of the home selling, packing, moving and upending of our lives has come to pass... the nerves have settled in. R&R is less than 2 weeks away. I am so excited to see him... but also? I am terrified. Like blind date terrified. What if it isn't the same? What if the chemistry is off? What if it just feels awkward? What if we don't fall back into step together? What if... ?

Now, please, please, please don't misconstrue this as anything other than what it is: nerves. Our relationship is on very solid ground. I am madly in love with Swiss. I think he is the sexiest thing on two legs. We communicate well with each other. In short, we are doing well, so I have no reason to think R&R won't go spectacularly.

I realize that this is probably normal. I also realize that my worries are likely baseless. But I can't get the idea that it will be awkward out of my head. I can't seem to figure out how it won't be weird. I mean, when you have a relationship with your husband strictly over the phone/e-mail for 8 months and then suddenly are back together, sharing the same physical space, being intimate, being a married couple, being the couple you remember being before... how does that work? Especially in just 2 weeks? (I suspect I know the answer to this... but feel free to share your experiences)

But oh, man. The nerves! I think it is just a product of wanting it to go well, of not seeing him in so long, and of wanting the assurance that we haven't changed... our relationship fundamentally hasn't changed. I understand (boy do I ever) that deployments change people, that experiencing this, living through it, coping with it, making do changes you. How could it not? But I can't help but worry that all of these little changes will add up to something that isn't, at it's root, us.

So feel free to tell me I'm nuts. Or not. Feel free to share your experiences with R&R/reintegration (which is also fast approaching). And tell me how you dealt with the nerves and angst. And then tell me to ease up, stop being my own worst enemy, and let myself get excited - nee - giddy about seeing my husband for the first time in over 8 months.


Post Tenebras Lux said...

So, definitely, (and especially since you *know* you guys are doing well) just nerves! I did the same thing before R&R, and those two weeks were faaaaaaabulous. It was still a not so fun experience while the nerves were present, tho', so I'm sorry =(. But you have my permission to ease up and get excited, giddy even!!

Bethany said...

I was worried about the same thing...about him being a different man or things not being the same between us...and I was happily surprised to find that (mostly) everything was just like it was when he left! If you guys have a solid foundation (which it sounds like you do!), then reintegration will be smooth sailing :) I understand the nerves, though!

Sis B said...

The nerves are overwhelming and every single girl I know has experienced them. I went to every homecoming ceremony for our battalion and sat with 50 different wives and every single one was a different state of nervous wreck. It's hard, and he's different, and you're different, and it's scary. No doubt. But every time I've felt them, they were gone within a few minutes of seeing him. The weirdness/awkwardness lasted a little longer (a few days) though. You're normal. Well, as normal as me, anyway. BWAHAHAHAHA! :D

Bree said...

Relax, breathe, you are perfectly normal. The nerves will dissipate the second you throw your arms around him. I know for Dave & I we fell right back into place. We know each other so well it wasn't a problem. You & Swiss will do beautifully. Now stop stressin & just be excited!! :o) YAY!

loquita said...

For me, once I'm in his arms for that first big hug, I have all this crazy physical-memory that rushes back into my head and immediately re-educates me about being part of a couple. As for conversation, well, you've been talking the whole time so that part is usually easier.

I think it's kinda fun to go back to the first date awkwardness, in a physical sense. :-p

Be giddy! You will feel the nerves, but just tell yourself it's all anticipation, and not fear. :)

Hilary Jacobs said...

My soldier just returned from a year in Iraq, I get to see him Monday for the first time in six months. His R&R homecoming very interesting!!! I was a basketcase in the days leading up. Especially not knowing when he would arrive. He estimated a given day that was actually 3 days after my birthday. So I thought it was wise to plan myself a bday party so I would not be bummed. I decided to go to a baseball game with about 10 friends and family. Well it turns out the morning of my bday he calls and says he will be there that evening. I scratched the dinner plans and "planned" to meet everyone at the ballpark. Thankfully everyone could print out their tix. Well then I spent the day watching his plane get more and more delayed. And of course his cell phone was no longer working. I was becoming unglued. I finally decided that I simply had to go to my bday party and if he could make it through combat in Iraq he could find me at the ballpark in SF. When he showed up mid-game in ACU's I had forgotten to eat the entire day and had a few beers in me. I also was wearing a papercone bday hat and puffy coat. Not exactly the homecoming look I was going for. Then once we got in the ballpark and at the seats with our friends and family.......I COMPLETELY LOST IT! Like I have never publicly lost it before. I blame the combo of no food, beer, the stress of the day and mostly just the completely overwhelming experience of seeing him after so long. I am a pretty even keeled person and I definitely do not do public displays like that. And I could not stop crying for almost an hour. It was horrific. Luckily my soldier was not fazed. But I just want to say, be prepared for the rush of emotions when you first see them. You expect to be emotionaly, but I was not prepared for the intensity. All those worries you stuff down, the relief just pours out. Then later I had a crymax, which I am not going to write about, but google it. So come Monday I will have eaten, no alcohol will be in my system and I hope to be ZEN!

J.L.S. said...

When Scott came home for R&R, it had been 9 months since he left. I can relate to the nerves. I was a nervous wreck. We had had some serious issues about 3-4 months before, but had worked through them and were fine again. (The problems involved his parents and house we had been led to believe was ours). I was still worried that things would be different though. I couldn't ever get excited. I was too scared and nervous about the whole thing. But, the second I saw him, I cried so hard I practically pulled muscles in my stomach. It was a good cry. It was the relief I needed from the weight I had been carrying around for 9 months. Our R&R was nearly perfect. We had another problem with that house we thought was ours and his family, but other than that, it was fairy tale perfect. You have absolutely nothing to fear! I promise you! Now, just get stinkin' excited! :)

Tucker said...

Thanks All!
I love your honesty and willingness to share... y'all rock!

I am still nervous, but I'm letting myself (finally) get excited! Squee! :)

Amy said...

The nerves are the best part, in retrospect. To me it was the best thing about the deployment. I miss feeling like I'm vibrating all the time. So exciting!

Meghan said...

Can I just say, Tucker, that it is SO helpful to me that you are going through everything I am about to go through, just six months ahead of me! Thanks for all the insight!! You better not delete this blog anytime soon because I am going to need to refer back to some of these posts!!

Bette said...

I'd be worried if you *weren't* nervous. Midtour leave is such an artificial construct in some ways -- he has to stop with the battlemind, you have to stop with doing everything yourself, and then two weeks later you reverse the process. This is not something normal couples have to do.

That said, I wouldn't have traded those days for anything. I came away from my sweetie's leave feeling even better about the future and how solid we were. I am hoping (and am sure, actually) the same will hold true for you two crazy kids!

liberal army wife said...

nervous, scared, first date - yup. that's it.. even after all these years, multiple R&Rs and homecomings... yeah!!

nothing I can tell you will help at this point! you will go through the roller coasters, laugh/cry/scream... and you'll be just fine.


Hope said...

I am SOOO glad you are writing this so in a few months when I am where you are now, I'll know I'm not crazy! Though, I'm already worried about R&R and he hasn't even deployed yet. Sigh. One of these days I'll learn . . .