8 Pre-Deployment Feelings

Content Courtesy of USAA Member Community

By: Briana Hartzell

Deployment. The dreaded “D” word. You know it is coming, that it is inevitable and even so, it seems to sneak up on you and elicits a range of emotions akin to riding a rickety roller coaster! It is my hope, that by explaining my roller coaster of feelings that it will help you work through your thoughts and feelings as your family prepares for a deployment.

  1. Shock. You are leaving when?! And for How long?
  2. Panic: OK we have exactly “X” amount of time to prepare you, prepare the kids and get our affairs in order- HURRY!
  3. Acceptance: We have got this, got the POAs (Power of Attorney), ordered Daddy Dolls®, purchased a few books. We can do this!
  4. Sadness: Trying not to countdown the days we have left, nor dwell on the thought of rolling over to an empty spot in bed every morning for the next 6 months. How do I explain it our two young girls? How can I keep our 1-year-old from forgetting her dad?
  5. Irritability– We only have two weeks everything must be perfect! Demanding my husband take this and that photo with the kids, attempt to cram in all the events he will miss in the next six months and insist we make the most of the time we have left. (Not my most proud phase)
  6. More Panic– Can I do this?
  7. Defiance. We will do this and We will do it well. (And you can too!)
  8. Gratefulness– For my spouse, and his coworkers who are ready and willing to serve our country, for the supportive nature of the military community I am in, for my family and friends.

Finally, it is with a grateful heart that I wish the USS Nimitz fair winds and following seas. So very thankful for the service of all aboard. Be safe and come home soon!

What range of emotions do you feel leading up to a deployment? I have benefited from others sharing their coping mechanisms and encourage you to share!


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