Last night I turned to Pat with tears in my eyes and said, "Reassure me that I can do it? I am worried about how I'm going to make it." My worry is NOT for myself. It is slightly for Sean because I know he'll miss Pat. They definitely have a strong bond, one which I think is amazing and beautiful. However, most of my worry stems for Ryan. You would have to know Ryan to understand that he is not the easiest two year old out there, and he doesn't seem to be quite like most of the other children we run into. I think that is due in part to him taking after his two VERY stubborn parents. He is an independent child but also complex on so many levels. He is going to need more than I can give him for these few weeks while he is lacking the interaction he usually gets from his Daddy. Therefore, I have to plan accordingly and sometimes that means stepping outside my comfort zone. That is a huge part of my worry too.
So my plan for survival is making sure the boys have an environment they can thrive in. Ryan will need planned activities outside the house at least twice a week. Sean will definitely need that extra attention that he's missing from Pat right now. I am thankful to see that warmer weather is on the way. We have the Parents as Teachers program tomorrow and probably a play group on Wednesday. I think the key is staying busy, but also providing the boys a schedule and adequate home time. Ryan does really well on a schedule, and it helps me and Sean get the time we need too. It seems that we all do really well with a few activities and a lot of together time in our place of comfort. I know I need to get out of the house more often for Ryan's sake, but I do not want to be one of those mothers that drags their kids around all day just to stay busy. It is a balancing act that I should hopefully have down within a few days.
I am thankful for having the experience of the last deployment where I was alone with Ryan under my belt. It taught me a lot, especially about providing the daily balance for my children. I am sure this JRTC rotation will prepare me for my next go around with deployment.