Monday, December 22, 2008

I'll be Home (Alone) for Christmas

Wow...what a time of year to finally break up. Right now, very little makes sense to me, and I have so many questions.

There is a reason the military has a high divorce rate. Of course, a variety of things can take place to destroy a marriage (or even an engagement, which was us). Deployments often change the soldier and hit them deeply...the other half at home even changes along the way. All this change happens as the couple lives apart...on opposite sides of the world. When that person comes home, both parties believe everything will just go back to the way it was before, now that you have that previous environment again. The soldier returns to familiar territory and the partner at home returns to the home with the soldier. Maybe for some military couples it happens so blissfully...but it didn't happen for us.

The scenario described above could happen to any type of couple...opposite-sex or same-sex. But, the same-sex aspect of it added more obstacles. For one, me, her, and the kids weren't officially recognized as a family. Therefore, the army didn't necessarily send her back to me. She didn't get the reacclimation time with us that her straight, married colleagues get. She had to use leave time. Then, of course, you have that her family lives many states away. While they know and understand she is gay, I always felt in competition with them. I shouldn't have to. I mean, of course, she needs to have time to go see them...but they wanted her to stay longer, rather than coming back to GA with me (also, where she is stationed...something she chose so she could be with me). So...between employer and family not recognizing us the same way they would a married or soon-to-be-married straight couple, it made things more difficult.

I guess we just weren't strong enough to make it through all the obstacles. After all...if it were meant to be, wouldn't those barriers been overcome?

Add the kids to the mix now. She's been a huge part of our life for two years...I know that isn't all that long, but she's the only person I've shared the children with. She treated them as hers, and even though my 11 year-old didn't always appreciate the extra authority (on top of not expecting the changes), both kids looked to her as a parent as well. She did way more for them than their father. You our many deep discussions, I told her that anyone who made their place in the kids' lives should never disappear from them. I said that in the event we split apart, I wanted her to remain in their lives. I've also expressed fear at the fact that if I had an untimely death (God, I hope not.), that it would be terrible, because the kids would go to their Dad, even though she was the one helping me raise them. Anyway...I am concerned about the children. I know they are resilient, though.

They say relationships are all experiences we shouldn't regret. I guess I just wish I wouldn't have gotten so involved for it to end like this. The hardest part is not the's all the dreams we share that have been shattered.

So...I'm toughing it out this Christmas, trying my best to have a "merry, gay" holiday. I've lost my partner, and I just lost my Nana (the mother in my life) in October. I don't want to be a grinch, but a large part of me wants the holidays to just fly by so I can return to business as usual. All I can think about right now is how I was supposed to go to NY with her and the kids for our first white Christmas...but she left us at home. And, then there's my family, who is being very loving toward me...but that's where I went every year to see my Nana...and I won't get to do that anymore. So, I'm thinking a low-key holiday is in order. I'll hang out with friends whenever they aren't busy with their own families.