9.22.2008

Nothing To Fear But Fear Itself...

The one thing I hate the most about my husband being deployed is not feeling safe. Although his life fight is to help others be safe, when he is gone... I feel very vulnerable.

Last night someone was jacking around in my backyard. They were tapping on windows and walking on my deck. I lay in my bed paralyzed with fear. Thoughts of "Is this just my mind playing tricks on me because I watched CSI before bed?", "Is that just the ground hog that we have living under the shed in the back lumbering about out there?" or "Do I call 911 because I am about to be killed?"

I crept my way through the house checking on each of my children before I sat and decided what I needed to do. Now, some of you may be yelling at your computer right now: "CALL THE POLICE YOU STUPID WOMAN!" and that thought did go through my head, but for some odd reason I didn't want to bother the police because I did not know what or who was in my backyard and chances are it was nothing, so I didn't want to look like a crazy woman calling the police out and have them come to my rescue because a ground hog came out to see his shadow. Or, it could have been a serial killer about to cut me into little pieces. I had a 50/50 chance.

Fear is a powerful thing when your husband is on the other side of the world and you think you are about to be eaten by a ground hog. The mind is a horrible enemy that never helps you to calm down but forces you to think of all of the horrible possibilities that could be lurking in the shadows of your flowerbed bordered backyard.

I decided to call my neighbors and they graciously met me at my door and walked through my yard with me at 1 o'clock in the morning. Whatever it was was gone. I was able to fall asleep by 3:30 in the morning and had a refreshing 3 hours of shut eye. Just what a crazy woman needs... sleep deprivation.

It is times like these that I wish I had super powers... or a 300 lb. body guard. Do men ever freak out from fear or do they just turn over and go back to sleep? I wonder...

22 comments:

Cassie said...

I have never experienced the kind of extended seperation you are going through now. But when my first child was born my husband had to go away on business for two nights and leave me with a 2 week old. The combination of hormones, lack of sleep, and having no freakin' idea how to take care of a baby, made me very jumpy. One night I heard a bang and immediately called the police to say that someone was breaking into my house. To their credit they showed up very quickly, guns drawn, and fanned out throughout my house and backyard while I waited with the baby in the squad car. Yeah, it turned out my cat had knocked over a vase. They were very gracious but I wish I had had your presence of mind to maybe call a neighbor first instead of having them send out the SWAT team!!

momto5minnies said...

Do you have an alarm system? Maybe that would help (just a little) put your mind at ease.

My husband is away right now and I will likely go to bed (way too late) with the television on a little loud so that I can only HEAR THAT. I can understand that uneasy feeling.

I would say get a dog, but mine is so friendly that he would welcome any intruder willing to pet him.

*glad that your neighbors came by to help

Anonymous said...

Geez Cris...I'm sure Ryan would tell you to get a gun...a shot gun. When they hear the gun load they'd be a runnin'!
Or maybe try my trick...when I lived in my apt. by myself. I'd always come home and open the door and say "Hey honey I'm home" just so if anyone was watching my place they'd think someone was there. I know...I'm clever. :)

~ Straight Shooter ~ said...

Holy Crap!
I get scared too when Lover Boy is away. I have a gun and keep it handy when he is away...or home too. I am one of those stupid people you read about who does THEN thinks...and faints from post~fright.
I say:
Alarm system
Big Dog
Gun
In that order.
In my freaky opinion.

armyfamilyok said...

I can so relate to what you're feeling. As long as we've lived here, my neighbors are always idiots when my hubby is gone. I hate that insecure feeling. I never worry about myself, but at times, I've feared for my daughter. It's so hard and it can totally drain you. I hope you have some peaceful nights.

Debbie said...

I hate that feeling of fear. It is almost paralyzing. And yes, it is worse when hubby is gone. I feel for you.

AFG said...

I'm new to your blog but I thought I'd chime in...

We just got an alarm system installed in our house which I keep armed day and night when DB is away. It really does help me feel a lot safer. We also have a dog but she's a little old beagle who's so friendly she'd probably think the intruder came by to play wtih her. It also helps me feel safer knowing that there's several military people that live very close by so I like to think they keep a watch out for me when they know DB is gone. This may seem silly and childish, but I'm more afraid of "ghosts" in the house than anything else!

Fear can definitely be overpowering but you are lucky to have neighbors that you can call in the middle of the night when you need them!

Recently we were lounging in the living room when all of a sudden one of the rocking chairs on our front porch starting rocking by itself. We both were shocked and somewhat terrified (me), I went and hid in my bedroom while he got out his gun and circled the house. Turns out it was just the wind. So to answer your question, yes, men do freak out!

Cliff said...

Only get a gun if you like guns and will practice with it often. Gun accidents kill kids.

Yes, we guys usually just roll over & go back to sleep. I'll pray for you.

june cleaver said...

OK-never in a million years would I buy a gun.

We have a dog that is so fierce she may just lick your face off.

We have an alarm system, but that doesn't protect me from people walking on my deck.

My best defense for fear? Last night I prayed and fell right to sleep.

Amazing

Anonymous said...

I'm actually going through something similar. My hubbie is away for a lil while, and while we have 3 dogs, an alarm system, and tons of guns... I still do not feel safe. Last night, I prayed and prayed...set the alarm, prayed some more, made sure the dogs were up and awake, prayed some more, took some Ambien..and out I went. I hate it when he's gone. And no alarm systems don't protect you from freaks on your back porch, but I like to think that if the freaks get in, the loud noise will drive em out!

Christine said...

Dear June Cleaver,

You should really get a couple copies of the NRA magazine and the reasons why we love the "right to bear arms". The stores of people protecting themselves (because they are gun owners) is a positive one.

Coming from a hunting family safety is no. 1. Also I really do not fear anything when I am home because I can defend myself. If anything get some mace or a tazer! Alarm systems are good but they do not and will not protect your physical safety. So before you totally say...guns no way... just look into some programs out there and find out more about keeping you and your family safe. And having peace of mind.

There is nothing like the sound of a shotgun loading a bullet. Best alarm system out there. Great neighbors by the way

Kathy said...

Don't forget about your Guardian Angel. Whenever I'm afraid like that, I call on my angel to protect and comfort me.

Joan Wester Anderson has some wonderful books about angels.

Prayers are with you!

Lynnie said...

I remember the first time I spent the night without my hubby and with our first baby. I heard a noise downstairs. I paused, then I thought, "Oh my God, It's ME! ME who has to go down there and check it out!" Adrenaline surged through me as I ran downstairs fully prepared to tackle anyone in my path. Luckily, it was our bird, or the wind, or something. All I knew was, Oh My God, I could have handled it!!! (Or at least I thought I could have!).

Cousin Steve said...

I think you put it best

"CALL THE POLICE YOU STUPID WOMAN!"

For the future, you should get some outside speakers by the deck. Then get a stereo hooked up to a motion sensor that plays a tape with the sound of a shotgun loading or a dog barking (not your dog) or a tank coming through the trees. That would scare the crap out of me!!

I mean, if I could be scared. Which I can't, because I am such a man. You know, kind of super hero type.

Well, got to go lift some cars or save some people or something....

Stupid Fat Hobbit said...

Well June, you're two for two with me on the past two blogs.

Yes, I am a guy and I've been scared out of my wits some of the nights since Debbie has been gone. It sounds kind of weird but I feel braver when she is here. I'm still the one going downstairs to check the noises but for some reason I feel safer with her here. The other morning I was out running and when I was about a mile from my house, I got totally frightened. I just knew something was wrong back at the house. I headed home and started praying like there was no tomorrow. When I got back to the house, two friends were out walking their dogs up and down our street. They never come down our way but I'm certain that they were sent to watch the house while I was out as an answer to my prayers.

punditdad said...

I'm more worried about my daughter being hurt in a car crash than hurt by an intruder -- the odds WAY FAVOR a car accident. I'm a good sized dude who probably has been concerned about intruders but now we live in one of the safest places in the country so now, not so much. I'd echo others on the gun, you're more likely to kill a member of your family than protect yourself or your property. If you need something to help you sleep better (don't we all excluding the giant glass of wine in front of me) then an alarm system is your best bet and you don't need to spend a fortune to get it. New to your blog and think it rocks!

messy bessy said...

I don't have a military husband but every time he is gone overnight I have the same trouble feeling unsafe. I make sure everything is locked, the baseball bat is behind the bedroom door, and the phone is right on my bedside table.

One night about 8 years ago DH had to be gone for about 10 days and I was 35 weeks pregnant, the other kids being 2 and 4. I made the dumb mistake of watching the XFiles and then trying to stay up to get tired, but of course was overtired. So I'm sitting in bed trying to read something to distract me when I hear this weird yowling cry from INSIDE the house -- oh my gosh was I terrified and paralyzed, and then in comes the cat, who has in her mouth a DEAD BABY BUNNY!! She hops up onto my bed and drops the carcass on my bedspread-covered legs and then lies down purring with joy. How X Files is that?

Then of course I doubly freaked out because I realized I had put her out for the night, and then checked all the windows -- had someone gotten in? So another half hour I had to go check every stupid window and it turned out there was a half-window in the basement that I'd not checked which was open a crack, enough for the killer cat to get in with her little creepy gift for me.

Let me tell you men out there -- your women need you at a time like this -- possibly the scariest and creepiest event I ever dealt with alone, and not that bad objectively, but in terms of mental stress huge!

Anonymous said...

June you were right when you quoted FDR..."We have nothing to fear but fear itself"
Just as true today as it was the day FDR said it!
Keep those doors and windows locked, lights on and sleep with your Guardian Angel!
Love,
Aunt Barbara

Cathy said...

One night, just as we were drifting off to sleep we heard, "bang, bang, bang, bang, bang" It was a slightly metallic bang and very loud. I swear it sounded like gun shots, although we live in a nice, quite neighborhood. We searched all over, inside and out. I didn't go outside. I sent hubby, who carried a baseball bat.

The culprit? You know those fridgepacks of soda? We had an open one in the pantry and the bottom piece of cardboard broke off sending all the soda cans to the floor.

Dad29 said...

I'd echo others on the gun, you're more likely to kill a member of your family than protect yourself or your property.

You have a high regard for June, eh?

Good thing you'd never buy a gun. My wife and daughters are DAMN good marksmen after only about 30 minutes of training.

So now I live in fear of offending one of them.

Shannon said...

Someone rang my doorbell at 7:30 last night...then when I didn't answer..they proceeded to knock extremely hard and loud... We don't have a peep-hole.. and I don't answer the door at night... I jumped like 3 foot high!! I thought of you :) ha!

Martha said...

lol I love the speakers with shotguns idea!

also, you CAN get a 300 lb body guard - get a BIG dog. A great dane is awesome. A pair would be even better. Those fellas are almost as big as a horse, are great defenders of their "pack", but are great with kids and wonderful to train.

or I could loan you my cat. I don't know about serial killers, but WE live in fear of her!