Dispatches from a go-gettin journalist. Because not all Army wives live behind the lines...

Saturday, December 31, 2011


As I looked back over this year, I realized there was so much physically and emotionally packed into one year. I cannot believe that we have succeeded and failed so much in one year.

This year, you were introduced to Mr. and Mrs. Superman, a half-Bean half-Apple whole-hearted Army couple, who were under the impression that Superman would be shipped off this year – our first year of marriage -- to AFG.  

We were oh so ready. We had a pre-deployment, a whole battle book, and a whole post-deployment plan. We worked our tails off – so hard in fact that I was promoted at work. And Superman was too.

The Army sure had its plans for us. But God's plans were greater. And two weeks before D-day, Superman's orders were reversed. We found ourselves throwing away the battle book and fast forwarding our one year out post-deployment plans to right that second. Next thing you know, we're living together for the first time. 

Talk about adjustment. Talk about loving every minute.

There was more Apple than Army this year. In some ways, that was a huge sigh of relief. We learned the importance of taking risks. The importance of chasing our dreams at any cost. But our accomplishments and successes did come at a cost. We sacrificed.

We celebrated our one-year anniversary knowing that everything we did, we did it together. I couldn't have asked for a better life, love, and business partner.

There's something to be said about unconditional love. I just can't find the words yet.

Superman left on a mini-deployment that seems a total drag now, but I have to trust that it will lead to greater things

We also raised a fur baby, who came out alright.

So goodbye 2011. You were difficult and rewarding. I'm glad Superman was around to hold my hand through. Here's hoping 2012 will be smoother sailing.

The stakes are high
The water's rough
But this love is ours. 

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Friends Friends Friends

You're only as good as your friends. And let me tell you, I have the best.

2012 is upon us, and I'm getting that 2-year itch. Every two years, I find myself in a radically different spot in my life. Something major happens. Two years ago I got engaged and bought a house. Two years before that, I picked up my unemployed self and moved to the city I wanted to be in and got a new job that propelled me in the greatest career move yet.

Do you sense a pattern here? Tecumseh's curse, maybe? Since all drastic changes were accompanied by feelings of maladjustment, and a sense of anxiety that the rug of happiness would be pulled out from under me.

But now I've realized that in all the big changes, my friends have been a constant. So constant, in fact, that their words of wisdom are becoming ever more wise... since they pretty much know the drill. Here are a few W.O.W. from which you too might find some inspiration:

  • "The movie trailer will be like 'She had nothing to lose. They had everything to gain. One woman. one wall street, this summer... The Journalist.' Or wha'eva."
  • "Sometimes, stuff just happens and it works itself out."
And what I was recently reminded by so many ...

Thank you Pinterest

Thank you, friends! 

Friday, December 23, 2011

That's What He Said

I know you've been missing these.

So by know I hope you know that Superman is the definition of Alpha male. Case in point: he spent most of last weekend's Christmas party talking about different gun brands. His solution to all my problems is to "mace liberally."

He's the protector, the provider. Him Tarzan. Blah blah. You get the point. (If you need any more justification: Read This.)

He's no shmoosh.

In fact, even in the beginning stages of our relationship into our engagement, Superman was not a "public display of affection" kinda guy. We've always been super private.

But lately, a few things have changed. Drastically. So I present to you the (I-can't-believe) that's what he said/did:

(At a very public diner, which we frequent very often, so the folks there know us very well):

Me: I'm the best business partner you're ever going to have. 

Superman: You're the only business partner I ever want. 

**Sappy smoochy face; hand holding, melting ooeeyyy gooeyy feelings of warmth and butterflies and rainbows and circus animals and...** Okay, I'm pushing it.

But you get it.

The truth is, damn right I'm the best business partner. Our business is doing pretty darn good while you're on your mini-deployment, Captain! Getting the credit I deserve is pretty good. But the private moments spilling over into public-hood -- in a way that's not disgustingly uncomfortable for other people -- is just way better.

We keep it classy, people.

So cute you just want to barf. I know. We're turning into the shmooshy couple that is super too in love that we're starting to love each other in public all the time.

I. Love. It.

(Minus the booty pinches. Seriously though. Those hurt.)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Holiday Hold Up

When you live in the Apple, it's hard to believe that the holidays are considered the "slow" period.

Everyone's working overtime to make sure that the store fronts have the most magnificent scenes to date, the world's largest menorah is ceremoniously lit 8 nights in a row, there are at least 7 tree lighting ceremonies all within 20 mile radius, and the Nutcracker, the Rockettes, and Hansel and Gretel all go off without a hitch at least three times a day. More Appleites are choosing to rent-a-Santa instead of waiting in the long line at Macy's (yes, I heard this fact from a few moms I went out to lunch with a few days ago), not to mention there are more Scrooges than Santas running this town -- meaning that those of us who live here year round are still working overtime.
There's no slowing down in Manhattan.

I've got two chapters of a book to wrap and a contract to seal, while still feeding the daily work beast. So it's been difficult for me to believe that people aren't responding to emails, returning calls or replying to applications because it's "just the slow period," or "everyone's on vacation." Am I delusional to be taking this non-communication personal?

What's the holiday hold-up people!?!? (said the true Appleite.)

The Apple is spinning, and I'm trying to keep up and stay productive while still counting down the days to see Superman this weekend.

I think that maybe once Superman comes around I'll be able to focus and bang out those two chapters, and get that script written -- all in a days work, right?

But secretly I know that when we're together the world can spin all it wants.

I won't give a hoot.

Hope your holidays also hold you up from the demands and deadlines!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

All Grown Up!

Today, Gatto graduated from kitten to adult cat food.

I'm convinced this feeling is the pet equivalent of your baby taking her first steps while husband is deployed.

Our Gatito is all grown up!!

Thursday, December 15, 2011


Last night I thought about the day we signed the papers for our first home. I remembered how I could see Superman's eyes smile through his motorcycle helmet. I remembered that even though it was a freezing cold December evening, we strapped our motorcycle jackets on and rode like bandits to our real estate agent's office... a little faster than we should have.

I remembered how excited we were to sign page one of a nearly 300 page contract to our home. I remembered that we weren't married yet, so we had to be "business partners." 

I remembered that the excitement began to wear off by the time we got to signing our 200th page, and we just wanted those dang keys. 

I remembered being carried into our home for the first time and really truly understanding what it meant to love someone. What it meant to work so hard toward a dream together and to see that dream come true. 

We were so incredibly happy I don't think we even slept that night. Life seemed so simple then.

 I remembered all of this because these past few weeks I've been calling our mailman incessantly. We still own the home but we don't live there full-time -- the mailman thought that we don't own it anymore and had been returning our mail to the senders. That's what happens when you live in a small town and everyone knows everyone.

Last night, when I found out that some holiday cards sent to our home had been returned to our family, I got really upset and called the mailman. Twice.

In reality, I wasn't as upset as I should have been about the mail or the mailman. I was upset because I felt like our home was being taken away from us. It's hard enough that Superman isn't around our current Apple home. But now I feel like I'm trying to protect two homes at once and make sure that both forts are secure. And whenever one thing gets fixed, another thing breaks.

I also thought about life after this mini-deployment. Will it ever get back to being as simple as it was?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The Halfway Blues

We're halfway through Superman's mini-deployment, and it's safe to say that the halfway blues are here. I really thought I could dodge it, but alas.

For many things, I'm struggling to put one foot in front of the other. And for others, I'm just on autopilot. Things are getting done, I'm just not sure how.

But I'm tired. Tired of being a single mother to our fur baby, tired of living my life in a bus from one state to another. Tired of holding the weight of responsibilities on my shoulders while holding two jobs, a few projects, and some resemblance of a life.

It's that (not so) normal mid-deployment feeling of wanting it to just be over because I'm not sure how much longer I can keep it together. But at the same time, not wanting for it to be over because I fear life after. Already I'm feeling the pressure of the next step, especially the parts of life after that I just can't control.

I was an insomniac the first half of a deployment because I miss Superman. I'm an insomniac the second half of a deployment because I'm anxious about life after. What will happen to us? How will we adjust? How much more will I have to give up?

I wish I had control over the answers.

Deployments -- no better way to describe them than slow when they should be fast and fast when they should be slow.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Ugly Day... Or Two. Maybe Three. Maybe Week.

Caution: You're about to enter the pity pow wow.

I'm on Day 3 of having an Ugly day.

You know what I'm talking about. I look gross. I feel like a disaster in the making. Whatever I do to myself is just not working. I'm coming up on a deadline for a project I haven't even started yet. And I probably can't look you in the face.

I'm Eeyore to the Nth degree. Because ugly day is turning into ugly week -- and someone needs to put an end to this. ASAP. Especially since giving up is beginning to sound tempting... (What's happening to me!???)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Viva La Stilettos!

Stilettos are perhaps the most dynamic of fashion pieces for lady Appleites.

It's regarded as the status symbol of mastering the uneven streets of New York while doubling as a weapon to kick the poop out of anyone who gets in your space.

But for this Army wife whose husband is on a mini-deployment, stilettos are the new toolbox.

A few nights ago I came home to the sound of the fire detector beeping loud and obnoxiously every 30 seconds. I couldn't reach high enough to check it out. At first I thought I'd just leave it alone and maybe I'd stop noticing long enough for Superman to come home and fix it. (This is coming from the same lady who, 3 months into a yearlong deployment to Iraq, wanted to wait for Superman to come home and change the burnt out light bulbs in her bedroom).

But after a few subsequent beeps, I had enough.

I grabbed a pair of my stilettos and chucked it at the detector, and it came crashing down. Lord knows if I broke it since pieces of it went every which way. But the house is peaceful and quiet again. So, I call that fixed.

And that, my friends (and husband), is why every woman needs less screwdrivers, and more stilettos.