A Mother’s Silent Scream: Coping with Impending Deployment
My son, LCpl Honda is set to deploy to the Sandbox later this year. It is still a few months off so I decided I just cannot freak out and go out of my mind with worry just yet. Nevertheless, I have to admit that each day that comes to pass, I feel a scream welling up inside of me. I know that this is probably normal and I know that I am not alone in feeling this way.
When my nephew, Cpl Red went on his first deployment I watched my sister, Crafty go through this process. I was with her when she had to say goodbye as his unit left. That experience is forever stamped in my memory. I watched other parents, wives, girlfriends and children say goodbye to their loved ones. I saw the look on their faces. I came home and told my mom, “I don’t want to ever have to do this again.” However, in my heart I knew I would.
I remember when I was very young and Vietnam ended. I naively thought that there would not really be any more wars. Why? I guess because I was young and not very informed about the way of the world. I never ever thought that a child of mine might have to go off to combat. I think after 9/11 that changed. With my daughter, Cinderella, who was active duty army at the time, for the first time ever, I felt the fear that I feel now.
I have only told family about LCpl Honda’s deployment. I cannot bear to divulge this information to other friends and co-workers just yet. LCpl Honda worked at the same place I worked before going off to boot camp. So everyone there likes him and knows him well. I just cannot bear the sympatric looks that I know will come. Please do not get me wrong. I know people mean well, but non-military families just do not have the understanding. It is not their fault. They are just not in the situation.
I have also found that I purposely do not do things like watch war movies. My husband wanted to watch ‘Saving Private Ryan’ this past weekend. I could not do it. HBO is replaying ‘Taking Chance’ at the end of the month. It is about a fallen Marine being escorted home. I plan to record it, but I do not think I will watch it until this deployment is over and my son and nephew are home safe.
I am not sure how well I will cope in the days ahead, but I will at least try to “soldier on” and if anybody asks, I will just reply with, “Good to go.”