This blog post has been written and submitted by Natalie Frazier, a freelance photographer, writer, and military spouse.
The most intense loneliness I have ever felt happened while my military member was right beside me on the couch.
Occupied by temporary time killers, my sweet husband sat exhausted from work while I felt the loneliness take over ever bone in my body. We had just packed up our entire life again, I haven’t found a job, I have no friends and I can’t remember the last time that my husband didn’t work a 13-hour day.
If this feeling is resonating with you, I am here to tell you that you aren’t alone.
The other people’s stories that you are comparing yourself to are not so extraordinarily sunshiny. This is an ode to the things I have learned while my husband is preparing for his first deployment.
If there is anything that I have learned in the last four months, it is reframing is your best friend during this life.
When our military members have nothing left to give, our communication is crucial and important. Reframing your thoughts to fit this new reality can save you so much heartache, and frankly, heartbreak. If you aren’t quite there, I at least hope you can find solace in a fellow military wife feeling what is on your heart.
Here are a few moments of reframing to help inspire you to move forward through the clouds of isolation and loneliness. If you are in your season of standing strong through it all, you are heard, you are seen and you are unstoppable:
As the rest of dinner sits on the counter falling cold, I have found myself cursing my husband’s hectic schedule. I don’t remember the last time my husband has been able to sit down and have dinner with me at the time he told me he would.
But, how joyous is it that my husband is learning prospering in a career that he believes in. Our marriage holds many more dinners and moments for connection. His job is an important one not many conquer. These moments of advancement, knowledge and leadership building are something that will benefit him far into the future, and that is something I can be at peace with.
My military member has fallen asleep again right when he gets home.
God is providing, sweet spouse. He is providing and working through your service member in ways that you cannot quite wrap your head around yet. This essential rest allows your spouse to heal, to recover, and to continue to learn his job duties. This rest allows your military member to get up every day and move mountains for themselves, your family and others. How blessed are we to be able to rest in a warm bed and safe protected home. This rest is essential.
They are not understanding how much this season is affecting me.
Step out of your comfort zone and communicate clearly. Your military member’s priority right now is doing their job to their full capacity. Take the intentional time to let them know how this new season is treating you. Their brains are occupied, and we all fall short in emotional acuity sometimes. They will never know how you are doing until you let them know.
Communication will carry you forward when everything else feels like it is failing. You are allowed to talk to your military member even when the military stress is fierce. Valuing communication protects your marriage. Problems feel simple when communication is at the forefront.
I feel so lonely when my spouse is close by.
Make sure you are taking intentional time for each other. When the military is furiously getting in the way it can make you feel miles apart from your spouse even when they are close by. In times of strife, it is the smallest intentional actions that make a huge difference in that feeling of loneliness. Whether it is you packing their lunch or them leaving you a note on the bathroom mirror, sometimes it is the smallest moments that can make your heart smile.
Reframing is hard and it won’t solve all your feelings, but it is a sure good place to start.
Sarah here, and I am so grateful to Natalie for sharing her deeply personal experiences with me and you.
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For more validating words and understanding, I encourage you to check out my poetry book, which was written with YOU in mind.
You are seen, loved, valued, and important 🤍