Saying Goodbye…

Note: I may earn money or products from the companies, products, or links mentioned in this post.

I did not realize that saying goodbye, or saying “See you later” as it is known in military circles would be so hard. Sure, no goodbye is easy, but this- this was a lot harder than anticipated. And you know what the ironic thing is? Saying goodbye wasn’t even the hardest part…

My First Military Goodbye

Saying Goodbye

I had a ton to do that morning. I got up, put myself in super-wife mode and did what I had to do. I even made it through my shower without crying. I just felt numb. I had a list of things to do that morning on top of getting ready. I had to run to the store to get my son more baby food and milk, pick up water-proof mascara (because apparently, I didn’t have any), pick up my friend who was coming with us so I didn’t have to drive home alone from the airport, and pick up my son’s babysitter.

I ran my errands, picked up my friend, knowing full well she was probably wondering why I wasn’t crying yet. But I was in my zone, I was not going to cry until it was absolutely necessary. We got home, I ran over the schedule with my son’s sitter and tried to think of anything else that could prevent us from leaving any sooner than we had to. My friend knew what I was doing. So did my husband, and so he made us leave.

The drive to the airport wasn’t bad. It was filled with chatter about the day and about life. We stopped for breakfast on the way to the airport, and that was when I had a few moments to think. Bad idea. My stomach was tied in knots, and for a moment I didn’t even want to eat. But I did. We were back on the road quicker than I wanted and soon arrived at the airport.

We were getting out of the car now, and I knew this was it. My stomach felt sick, and now I was wishing I really hadn’t eaten. It was a quick walk into the airport where my husband dropped off his bags. There were no lines and everything was going by too fast. I wanted to beg him to slow down to take our time, to do anything that could give us just a few more minutes together.

We slowly made our way toward security. My friend took several pictures. I wasn’t sure whether to laugh or cry. I wanted to look back and remember this, remember how God got me through, and remember how strong I was.

My husband and I walked closer to the security deployment goodbyeentrance alone, and then the time had come. I knew: this is it. And the tears came. Nothing up until that point had mattered because at that last moment you realize everything you have, everything you are is going away. I had held it together up until now and I now I just told him how badly I didn’t want him to go. My husband tried to make me laugh, tried to make me feel better, but I know it was hard for him too. I clung to him, hugging him not once, not twice, not even three times, but more like six or seven times. I could not let him go. Letting go and watching him walk away, that was the hardest part.

Eventually, I did let go, and once I did I knew there was no turning back. So I turned and headed back. I was still wiping tears by the time I made it back to my friend. She gave me a hug and told me everything was going to be ok. The hardest part was over now, and I slowly slipped back into super-wife mode.

The rest of the day went by without incident. We made it home, and I asked my friend if she would come stay at my house for a bit. I didn’t want to be alone. We chatted and made pumpkin bread. I felt like I was a robot just going through the motions. I was in a fog, but so eager to keep busy so I didn’t have to think.

That night after I put my son to bed. I went to my room, laid down on my bed and cried. I was finally able to let go, at least a little. I had been strong for myself, my husband, and my son, and now it was time to let go. I gave myself a few more minutes in bed, and then decided I needed to press on. I got up, ate some dinner, and went on into the fog that I called life at the moment.

To my Love:
I read somewhere that “Goodbye” is the shortened form of “God be with you.” Honey, I know God was with you, and I know God is with you now. I know that He will protect you, and get you through this even better than I could ever imagine. It’s not my job to be “God” and I’m sure glad it’s not. He is going to take care of you even better than I could ever do. Just remember my touch, remember my kiss, and always know that I love you.

Military Deployment Binder Kit – Printables & Checklists for Military Spouses – Get Yours Here!

Similar Posts


  1. My heart goes out to you. Saying goodbye is never easy no matter the circumstances. But you won’t be alone. Lean on your faith and God will help you get through.

  2. I’m so sorry girl… I really can’t imagine the pain you are feeling. I want you to know that I pray for you and your family everyday and I am so thankful not only to know you but for your sacrifice to our country.

    1. Than you so much girl. I have to say that even through everything I have been through I have felt everyone’s prayers. It has really been amazing.

  3. The “see you laters” are so hard. I hate having do go through that in such a public place like the airport. It’s so hard at times, but your faith will carry you through! God bless and I’ll keep you and your family in my prayers!

    1. Oh I know. Everyone is staring and you just kinda wonder, what are they thinking?? Thank you so much for your sweet comment and your prayers. They are very appreciated.

  4. I know that this is hard and I wish that I could tell you things will get easier. The truth is, things may start to seem easier, and just when you think you have it down, you hit a set back. Just know that when that time comes and you feel like you are at square one again, there are so many of us out here that are right with you. I’ve stood where you are more times than I want to count, and it never gets easier. Hold on to the things that matter most and cling to them to give you strength to get through. Everyday is one day closer. Eve though each minute drags on, the hands of time still move forward. If you want, I still have my donut of misery if you want to reset it for your dates. I know it seems silly to watch a donut shrink, but it helped me to see progress.

    1. Thanks girl. I realize I will have those days, I just wish they didn’t all come at once lol. I really appreciate the encouragement and advice, and all your help, you are a good friend. 🙂 Someone else actually send me a donut thing so I think I am good, and yes it does help, even just a little!

  5. Praying for you girl He will look after the both of you. Seek His face and know that the enemy will not be far away lurking and waiting for his chance to devour you and your marriage. Seek God, know God, Stay close to God, He will never leave you or forsake you. Call out to Him when you feel you cant take anymore. Remember, Jesus KNOWS how scary it is to be US in these hard situations!! Have Godly friends surrounding you and never ever let pride get in the way of asking for help when you need it. You got this girl, you got God the Father on your side!! Love you

    1. Thank you so much for the encouragement and advice, Sonya. It does feel like Satan is trying his best to get me down, after the past two weeks I have had… Just reminds me of the verse, that says to beware of the Devil who is like a roaring lion, just waiting to get us (my paraphrase). And I can’t tell you how many times in the past two weeks I have had to swallow my pride and ask for help, because I just could not do it any other way. God sure is teaching me some important lessons! Thanks for the prayers, and for everything else, I appreciate you!

  6. I know how it feels to say “see you later” and to raise kids alone while they’re gone. You and your whole family are in my thoughts and prayers. God will watch over all of you. 🙂

    1. Thank you so much Manda. It feels good not to feel so alone in this. I appreciate your sweet comment and the prayers.

  7. “See you laters” are always so hard. I am sending prayers and hugs your way. I was just talking with a friend about how I was in “strong mode” the day my husband deployed and how I seemed to carry it for the first month, but then one day I just sat in our room, cried and let it all out. Sometimes you just have to let it all out, it just makes you feel better. Just keep busy and stay strong!

    1. Thank you so much! I did that before he deployed. We knew for almost 4 months when he was leaving, and I was determined to be strong and had not cried yet. Only a couple weeks before he left, one night I just fell apart. I cried the whole night literally. But honestly I’m so glad I did it felt good to just let it out. Thanks for commenting, and understanding! 🙂

  8. You made me tear up. Those feelings are so universal to milspouses, I think. It’s like it would be easier to have them gone if you didn’t have the goodbye day. I remember that feeling oh so well.

    There are so many people covering you three in prayer. You’ll be there for Adam, he’ll be there for you (even if he doesn’t know it), and you guys will get through it.

    Lots of hugs!!

    1. Yeah they definitely are. And it’s nice to know we are not alone in what we feel either. Thanks you so much, I agree. I am so glad we have good friends who are there for us in person and in prayer. I am also so glad I have Adam to keep me busy! 🙂

  9. Reading your post brought back all the memories from the day Joe deployed. I remember those knots and feeling sick too. The first days and weeks were really hard, I won’t lie. But after that, you find your own routine – your “new normal.” It’s still difficult and will be until he gets back, but you can do it. Lean on God and all your mil spouse friends for support and comfort. Never feel bad for crying, you WILL feel better afterward. You can do this!

    1. Everyone says the first few weeks are the hardest and that has been so true. I keep seeing the big picture two weeks in and a lot left to go, but I am hoping it will get better. I want my “new normal” but I don’t you know what I mean? Thanks for the encouragement girl, I appreciate it!

  10. I’ve been reading your blog for a while, passed to me from a friend. Saying good-bye is so hard. I remember crying at the airport with my husband and a lady came by, rubbed our back, and said, “I am so sorry…Thank you so much for doing this for us”

    Hang in there….Some days are easier than others, but I feel like the first 2 weeks are the hardest.

  11. The way you explained the deployment time as a “fog” is perfect. The time my husband left for his deployment until he came back is foggy and blurry to me. You push and push and push because that is what we (military wives) do through deployments. One thing that did help me was to make little dates here and there so I have something to look forward to and make the time go faster. This is a beautifully written, sad post.

    1. The hardest part for me was going back to the empty house..that’s when I would lose it. I’m glad you had a friend that could be there for you during that time.

      Praying God will keep your hubby safe!

      1. Yes, that was a huge thing for me. I am not one of those people who like to be alone all the time. I have my moments, but for the most part I like company. I was so glad my friend could come. Thank you for the prayers and for your comment. Hope you are doing well!

    2. Yup I agree. The when it’s over you are so tired from pushing, you are just glad it’s over. Yeah I have a few dates to look forward to and it does help a little. It’s just hard not to see the big picture think wow I still have ___ much time left. Thanks for commenting!

  12. You have made it through what I consider the hardest part of a deployment. You can make it through anything…thinking of you.

    1. Thank you. It is a hard part, but I am not sure if it was the hardest yet. This past two weeks have been very hard too. Thanks for the sweet comment! 🙂

  13. I remember this time last year doing the exact same thing. You’ll be numb for a while but I feel that’s God’s way of protecting you too. My heart goes out to you and your family. This is a hard time but I have faith that God will pull you through it and you’ll come out better than before.
    (I know this is long but it gave me inspiration and a drive to move forward during those long months apart…)

    The Good Lord was creating a model for military wives and was into his sixth day of overtime when an angel app…eared. She said, “Lord, you seem to be having a lot of trouble with this one. What’s wrong with the standard model?”

    The Lord replied, “Have you seen the specs on this order? She has to be completely independent, possess the qualities of both father and mother, be a perfect hostess to 4 or 40 with an hour’s notice, run on black coffee, handle every emergency imaginable without a manual, be able to carry on cheerfully, even if she is pregnant and has the flu, and she must be willing to move to a new location 10 times in 17 years. And oh yes, she must have six pairs of hands.” The angel shook her head, “Six pair of hands? No way!”

    The Lord continued, “Don’t worry, we will make other military wives to help her. And we will give her an unusually strong heart so it can swell with pride in her husband’s achievements, sustain the pain of separations, beat soundly when it is overworked and tired, and be large enough to say “I understand” when she doesn’t and say, ‘I love you’ regardless”.

    “Lord,” said the angel, touching his arm gently “Go to bed and get some rest. You can finish this tomorrow”. “I can’t stop now”, said the Lord “I am so close to creating something unique. Already this model heals herself when she is sick, can put up six unexpected guests for the weekend, wave goodbye to her husband from a depot, pier or runway and understand why it’s important that he leave.”

    The angel circled the model of the military wife, looked at it closely and sighed, “It looks fine, but it’s too soft”. “She might look soft”, replied the Lord, “but she has the strength of a lion. You would not believe what she can endure.”
    Finally, the angel bent over and ran her finger across the cheek of the Lord’s creation. “There’s a leak”, she announced. “Something is wrong with the construction. You are trying to put too much into this model.”

    The Lord appeared offended at the angel’s lack of confidence. “What you see is not a leak”, he said, “It’s a tear.” “A tear? What is it there for?”, asked the angel. The Lord replied, “It’s for joy, sadness, pain, disappointment, loneliness, pride and a dedication to all the values that she and her husband hold dear.” “You are a genius!” exclaimed the angel.

    The Lord looked puzzled and replied, “I didn’t put it there”.

    1. I love what you said about being numb being God’s way of protecting me. I think that is a really good way to put it! I love this poem too, I have heard it before and always loved it. Thank you so much, I appreciate it!

  14. I know this feeling well. I could feel everything you were feeling here. Last year when Josh left for 8 months, I went to the gate with him and sat until it was time for him to leave. Then, I sat in the airport for 45 minutes AFTER his plane had left to cry. The hardest part is over and now you can start a countdown until he comes home. Just know that you are NOT alone and that there are so many of us have been where you are and are praying for you. Set yourself up some milestones. Treat yourself to a massage or a new outfit or whatever it is that makes you happy every 3 or 4 weeks. You CAN get through this. Hugs girl!

    1. Oh man girl that is exactly why my husband didn’t want me to go to the gate with him. i wanted to, but yet I didn’t. I know if I did, I would have been up there forever and not sure how I would have made it back, plus my husband doesn’t like prolonged goodbyes and I have to agree. Thanks for the encouragement, it is always nice to know someone has been through it and has gone down the same path I have or similar.

  15. When my husband deployed for a year, this was my mantra…. “I don’t have to make it through a year, just through today.” When you know it will be months before you are reunited, looking ahead is frankly just depressing. So I told myself over and over “it’s just today. I just have to be strong today.” And it helped. Praying for you!

    1. Wow.. you are so strong. I too am learning to take one day at a time and God is in control. Such great reminders! Thanks for the prayers and encouragement!

  16. This brought tears to my eyes because it made me recall putting my husband on a plane for Guam. When I left him at security, the airport employee asked if he was being deployed (he wasn’t in uniform). When I told her yes, she said that she was proud of me, that I had held it together better than so many women had. I was grateful for her kindness, but I quickly lost whatever it had been that was holding me together. Good for you for being able to wait until bedtime! I drove straight to my Mom’s and crawled in her bed to cry. The good news is that having a baby does make the time pass a little faster, but it’s bittersweet since you realize that your love is missing the little things. My thoughts and prayers are with you three, and I hope it passes quickly and safely!

  17. May this time fly by for you & you feel a strong bond & lots of faith every single day. I found your blog through my precious friend, Jessica Crow.
    Praying for you!
    ~ Nancy

  18. Hey Kathryn,

    I just stumbled across your blog and I am so glad I did…you are so real and I pray the blood of Jesus covers your husband, he shall not die but live to proclaim his glory. God be with you and your baby boy. I pray that God will be with you every day and may he fill your day with blesses…

    Stay blessed

    B x

    1. Thank you so much I try very hard to be honest and real here inspite of what others think. I appreciate the sweet comment!

  19. What a great idea to list your Top 10 blogs of the year so we can all enjoy the best of the best. I love it! Thank you. I have an incredible amount of respect for women with husbands in the military. I don’t know how you get the strength to do it but I am so grateful you do. Please give your hubby a heartfelt “Thank You” from the Weavers for making the hard decision to say “see you later” to his beautiful wife and children to protect our country and people like my husband and me who he’ll likely never meet. Thank you.

    1. Thank you! I did it last year as well, and I don’t take credit for the idea I believe I got it from another blogger. Thank you for your kind words, I so appreciate them. Honestly, this deployment (our first) has been the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. I don’t know how I get through each day, and the ups and downs, I just know God is there to give me peace, and without him there is no way I could do this.

  20. I teared up as I read this, for the pain you experienced & knowing I will experience the same pain in the future. I am a new Air Guard wife (and proud of it! 🙂 & although we met during a deployment I (eHarmony), I didn’t “know” him then. I know it will happen sometime & I am determined to be the “super-wife” you described when it does lol.

    I just found your blog through Stringer Mama (whoops, I mean Delight Thyself 🙂 ~ the name of your blog caught my eye! I am definitely a new follower. Your blog feels so homey 🙂


    1. Hi Heather,
      Thank you so much for commenting and for reading! Deployments are not fun ad honestly this has been the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. But I will say that you can do it. You can get through it with God’s help, and you will definitely learn and grow through it. I have learned a lot. Don’t worry about being a super-wife, when the time comes just make sure to take care of yourself, and surround yourself with good friends. Thanks for stopping by!

  21. This is a wonderful written post, a few months ago I put my husband on a bus for his 2nd deployment and you summed up really how it felt. Holding on to every last minute, then when it is time to really say good bye, just not wanting to or being ready to.

    I have really enjoyed looking through your blog posts this afternoon. You share your heart on here and it wonderful to read.

    1. Hey Kathryn!
      Love your name 😉 glad to see someone spells it the right way! Thanks for commenting. I’m glad someone else understands how I felt. It’s an awful feeling, but yet knowing you have to let go – just sad. I’m glad you liked my blog so much. Hope you come back and read again! 🙂

  22. The most thing that I hate is goodbye I tried & I knew how much it’s hard
    I praying to my God to safe every one specially soldiers
    At the end I wish you meet & be with who you love
    For ever & to ever

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *