Thursday, August 4, 2016

Apprehensive Social Butterfly

You know that day early in deployment when you get the invite to a social gathering. Your heart is begging you to stay in your pjs on the couch but you feel like it's the "right thing" to do. You brush your teeth, put on real clothes, and reluctantly drag drive yourself to the party. You third wheel it all night managing the highs and lows of socializing. There is someone to talk to, now everybody is hanging close to their husbands, preoccupy yourself with your kid, and now where did your little people go? No really because now you are third wheeling it again!!

That was me in week 1. Our very good friends were throwing a birthday party for their son and everybody and their...husband would be there. Which means? Third wheel. You've probably been there too. Birthday party, cook-out, or wine night. It's a couples night or family day and you know without a doubt you will be the only one sans husband. The thing is your husband has only been gone days or weeks and you aren't quite on board with the whole single woman hear me roar persona which will empower you in month 2, 3 and possibly 4. So, you become nauseous thinking about the pros and cons. You come up with your best excuses which are half truths because you don't want to out right lie. And God forbid you tell anyone you don't want to come because your husband just left and you are still in a funk. You know the way people are, negative emotions just encourage them to pressure you to come over and potentially risk ruining a perfectly great friendship outside of deployment.

To go or not to go--that is the question. Well, I went. It wasn't the worst. My kids had fun. I got to socialize with adults. I met some ladies who seem nice. I saw our very good friends who are a joy beyond measure. I witnessed some good ole Marine shenanigans which is always a good laugh. I stood around a lot and talked to no one. I preoccupied myself with my kids so I wouldn't be the loner in the corner. And I hovered over the food table one too many times.

I got out of the house. I could have stayed home and no one really would have been too bothered by my absence. But I would have been alone. And I was "alone" yesterday and I will probably be "alone" tomorrow. It's probably best that I get out these first weeks and socialize with adults when the opportunity presents itself :) Set the tone for an "exciting" deployment. However, I'm not setting myself up for an overly eventful deployment. I just want us all to get through in one piece, alive, and healthy. Because we know how the last one ended and we don't want to repeat that. So, if I want to stay home in jammies I will. If I feel I need a push, then I will give myself one of those too :) Morale of this story: Set your own pace deployment buddies!



  1. I think we've all had those moments. When I first got to Fort Campbell, I went to many functions alone and it sucked but I did meet some cool people. It's hard to break out of that shyness, but if you can do it, I think everyone will find they're better for it. :)

  2. I am terribly shy for the most part so I completely understand! I know you can break through that though. :)

  3. I haven't had to deal with this during deployment, but I felt like a third wheel much of the time Dan was at the Academy because he was so restricted and not allowed to leave a lot of the time. It's not fun... but I do think it's worth it to meet people! :)

  4. I sometimes will go to those things. But more often than not, I will decline. I'm too much of an introvert.