Kurt is now safely ensconced at the naval base in Illinois, where he is learning how to do his job for the second time in ten years. Poor guy. He even outranks one of his instructors by sheer ranking, and another instructor because he’s been in the Navy longer than the instructor. He says he’s bored out of his skull some days because even the stuff that’s relatively new to him is only new in the application — what’s behind it is all the same.
I feel rather badly for him, especially because there’s nothing for him to do there, and because he seriously doesn’t want to be away from me. He doesn’t even have access to a computer right now, which I am sure is causing him conniption fits. Taking computers away from him is like taking cigarettes away from someone who’s smoked for twenty years — not a nice thing to do. Apparently they don’t have a place on base for the single (and geographical bachelor) sailors to go to in order to use the computer and play video games and whatever else. They have a place like that on the base here, right at the edge of the pier. So Kurt can’t even check his email, not like he gets anything but porn spam anyhow. His days are spent in school, and then when he gets out of school, he goes to the gym if it’s one of the three days a week he has to go, or he sits in the room and watches TV. What else is there to do?? He hasn’t got a car, and even getting to the movies tomorrow is going to be a bit of a pain. He has to take the train and then the bus just to get to the movie theatre. It’s a good thing that he at least enjoys watching TV, and he’s content to watch something he’s seen a million times before.
Our last weekend together was pretty busy. We were trying to pack ten pounds into a five pound sack, as my father is fond of saying. There were lots of things I wanted him to get done before he left for three months, so he mowed the lawn for me, changed the oil in my car, helped me clear out the closet in the baby’s room, and a whole host of little chores.
Kurt actually had to go to work on Friday, but he was home by lunchtime, so we spent most of the day together. I was kitty-sitting for my neighbor — which actually is rather complicated. See, J found a baby kitten, but she knew her husband is at his limit with three cats, so she gave him to our other neighbor T. T’s daughter named the male kitten “Sunshine,” and loves him to death. But T had to go on vacation with her husband and daughter, so J took the kitty back while T was gone. J had to work both Thursday and Friday, and I took care of the kitten those days while she worked. This all meant that J was sitting for T, but I was sitting for J. When Kurt got home and saw the kitten, he immediately fell in love with him and wanted to keep him. I think he’s about five weeks old, rather the same age that Storm was when Kurt brought him home, and he’s a grey tabby with a white belly, neck, and feet. Sunshine took to Kurt as well immediately, and cuddled up to Kurt’s neck to take a bit of a nap. My two cats weren’t too thrilled with the kitten being here in the house, but Koolit was pretty excited. He was so gentle with Sunshine, though. Koolit would go up to the kitten, gently lower his nose so he could sniff him, then wag his tail in delight. It was so cute to watch.
Saturday we spent going down to the ship to retrieve Kurt’s expensive pair of boots and then also heading to the large Target in Tacoma in order to set up a baby registry. I wasn’t too keen on doing one, but J thought it would be a good idea so people can know what to get me. So I humored her, and did it. I also needed to go to that Target to look for my one-piece maternity swimsuit that I wanted and couldn’t find anywhere but Target. However, my Target is tiny, and for some reason they’ve stopped carrying all the maternity suits. But I managed to get one on Saturday. We also had to make a stop in at the Tacoma Hooters so Kurt could get his hot wings fix before he left. :o)
Sunday was so hard. Kurt started to pack after he finished all the work he wanted to get done before he left, and that just completely tore at me. I made him a list while he was mowing the lawn, and then once he began to pack and cross things off I started losing it. I didn’t want to cry and make his last day home so hard on him, but I couldn’t help it. I really couldn’t. He ended up making dinner because for some reason my back seized up as we trimmed my rhododendrons out front, and he didn’t want me to re-injure my back. But then sitting down to dinner, I realized it would be the last dinner we’d have for a while (and very possibly the last dinner we’d have together without being parents), and my throat closed up so tightly I couldn’t swallow. I had to excuse myself in order to go the bathroom to have a cry. I just couldn’t finish my dinner. After dinner, Kurt cleaned up the kitchen, and I went around the house putting some random stuff away, when I walked into the bedroom and saw his sneakers there in front of the mirrors. It made me think that the next time I saw his shoes here in the house, it would be because he was already gone, and I lost it once again, bawling into my shirt in the bedroom.
But fortunately on Memorial Day, the day Kurt left for school, I was able to keep my tears at bay. I don’t know why it hit me so hard on Sunday when I was pretty calm on Monday, but somehow I managed. We went to the airport, sat around while his plane was delayed a few times due to thunderstorms in Chicago, and finally said goodbye at the security gates. I didn’t cry at all during the entire drive home, mainly because Kurt’s plane was delayed again and he didn’t board till I walked into the house — and we live 90 miles away from the airport, so I chatted with him by phone during the hour and a half it took me to drive home.
This summer hasn’t been as bad as it was last summer, although it is worse in one way. I am sad that he’s missing the exciting part of the pregnancy, and that he’s going to be home so close to my due date. I am also worried that I will go into labor a few weeks early and he’ll miss it all. I think if it were our second child, I wouldn’t worry about it too much — but since I don’t really know what to expect, never having had a baby before, I’d like to have him here if for nothing else but support. My father wasn’t present for my birth, which I don’t resent or hold against him at all — he was in port in Italy with the Navy when I was born. But I also wasn’t my mother’s first birth, either. By the time I came along, it was pretty much old hat to her, especially with the quick births that my sister and I ended up to be.
But fortunately, we have our cell phones, and I can call him at any time of the day or night. Plus we have unlimited minutes between our phones, so we can talk as long as we like, which I am sure annoys Sprint to no end. For example, he was able to watch the Mariners and White Sox play today since he gets all the White Sox games where he is, so we watched the game together. Having this kind of unlimited communication makes this summer much better than last, but it still doesn’t alleviate my loneliness.
It’s hard not having your husband there to feel the baby kicking, or to reassure you that you will make it through labor just fine, or to tell you that you’ll be a good mom, or to rub your feet at night, or just to cuddle up against at night. I guess the part I miss the most is just hugging him and feeling his strength. Somehow it feels that I get replenished by his strength flowing in my body as we hug or cuddle together. Plus with him being so tall and so solidly built, it seems as though when we stand together that nothing can topple us, which is a feeling hard to recapture with my short stature standing alone.
I’ve been keeping busy. Fortunately J has really been there for me, taking me here, there and everywhere, and also talking to Kurt whenever I want to helps as well. I do miss being able to email him — I never really realized how much crap I tend to send to his inbox just to let him know I’m thinking about him.
I have to think solely in weeks. I don’t allow myself to think about how many days he’s been gone — I am simply looking to Monday to be able to say, “One week down.” Then I have merely twelve more weeks to go, and also if I look to payday, like I normally do, six weeks will go by in a flash. At that point it’s already halfway gone, so that has to be my yardstick. If I allow myself to think about days, then the number just becomes insurmountable.
I did seven months last year — I think I can manage thirteen weeks this year.