I find myself sitting here at this job of mine I don’t even like. I joined the military to experience the world and see things… But the only thing I’ve seen is this stupid computer and the dry deserts of Texas that I hate with the passion. The only thing that gets me through the day is knowing my wife is sitting at home waiting for me. Recently we’ve been trying to start a family. Finally it’s time to start packing up my stuff to leave this dreadful place. I get up and start walking out, but I hear my sergeant yell “Davis! Come see me in the back for a moment please.” Annoyed but without saying a word I walk back close the door and sit down. “You need me sir?” I asked. “Davis I just got a call to let you know you’re being deployed.” He muttered. “What? When?!” “I don’t know. Just go home let your wife know and get some sleep.” I seen that family of mine slowly slipping away. I got up without saying another word and left. I’m driving home and I find myself thinking about the deployment more and more, and I’m starting to realize I might not come back and be able to see my wife again. After about twenty minutes I pull up to my house, I turn the car off and just sit there thinking how I can break the news to her. I finally get out and open the door. Immediately she can tell something’s wrong. “What’s wrong? Long day?” she asks. “Umm not exactly” I say. “Then what is it?” she says anxiously. “ Uhh I don’t know how to say this but I’m being deployed to Afghanistan.” There’s a long pause. “When?!” she cries. “I don’t know but colonel is going to have sergeant let me know when he finds out, But for now let’s just forget about it.” The night was quiet and short. We ate and went to sleep. I woke to the sound of wind chopping? I realize on a plane with hundreds of other soldiers… did time go by that fast? I look out the window of the plane I see the dry desert ground and we soon land at the base. All I want to do is just sleep this six month so it will go by so I can see my wife again. The first day is easy; I just check in and get a tour of the base. I’m so excited… Not! I actually wish I was back in Texas. I never thought I’d say those words. The days go by fast here and next thing I know I’m a month into this deployment. I was walking around the base just doing my regular routine. Then out of nowhere a friend of mine runs up and says “congrats man! I’m sure you’re stoked!” “Wait what are you talking about?” I replied. “You haven’t heard? You’re going home! Your wife’s pregnant!” he says loudly. The moment was so surreal. I felt like I was going to faint but I ran to colonel the check if the story was true, and sure enough colonel told me I had a baby on the way and I was leaving to go home. I ran to my room and got my stuff packed, and next thing I know I’m on the next flight out. The whole way home I’m twiddling my thumbs. I feel like a kid in a candy shop. I haven’t been this happy in a long time. I started thinking how I was going to surprise my wife, maybe some flowers and chocolates? No to original I have to do something good… Maybe buy the crib for the baby? That could work, we land I feel great… I run off the plane, call a taxi, and head straight the baby store. I walk in the store and being a soon to be dad just hits me. Now I’ve got a hundred things running through my mind… Is it a boy or a girl? Is it healthy? So I jolt to the cribs section and I pick the crib that could work for both a boy and girl. Is a nice, sturdy, and real maple wood crib that I can’t wait to put together! I buy the crib and head home. As I get to the house I hop out of the car with the crib in one hand and flowers in the other. When I open the door I see my wife and another man having an affair on MY couch in MY house! She looks up and sees it’s me, her jaw drops. I feel weak after seeing this and I drop the crib and throw the flowers. She tries to explain but I don’t want to hear it. She asks me “why are you home?” “I heard I had a baby on the way? How could you do this? We were just about to have that family we always wanted? Why!” I yelled but without letting her say another word I tell her to get out of my house. I’m nice enough to let her get her stuff before she left. As she leaves she tries to say sorry and hug me but I push her off. As I grow more sullen and calm over the next few days I decided to let her explain. We met up at this little Italian restaurant we always went to. First thing I say is “Why? We’re about to have a baby?” But before I could say anything else she cuts me off “Michael I don’t know how to tell you this but the baby’s not yours.” She says in tears. At this point I wish something would have happened to me over in Afghanistan. I leave before she’s able to see me burst into tears. Over the next few months I took things one day at a time. I got divorced, transferred to a base in Florida and met a girl I decided to take things slow with. Although I went through the hardest thing in my life a few months earlier it kind of helped. It was a reality check for me. I realized I need to be more positive about life and just go with the flow. I think it’s safe to say life is good right about now.
The Wages of War
November 18, 2010