I've been staring at this empty page for well over a month since my last blog post.  Not sure of what to write.  Or really, how to write it.  I'm hesitating with how honest I should be. 

So many pictures to update.  So many stories to tell.  So many blog posts waiting to be written.  Sheridan's 3rd grade performance at school.  Matt's 3rd (and last) R&R.  Our trip to California.  And Barbados.  Riley's new softball season.  My insanity at running for PTA president next year.

Yet I sit here.  And try to figure out how put a positive spin on everything.  The same way I always do when asked the question, "How are you doing?"  Because really?  Do you care?  Or are you just asking the question for the sake of asking ... not really listening to the answer or wanting to hear anything other than, "I'm fine.  Things are great."

But the reality after Matt being gone for over 10 months now, soon to return from his second unaccompanied tour, is that I can't.  For it isn't all sunshine and rainbows over here.  I've been struggling.

I'm struggling with my patience.  It's really wearing thin some days.

I'm struggling with our activities, the overlap we often have, and the agonizing decisions that I have to make to choose one over another.

I'm struggling with accepting that the friends who emphatically stated they'd be there to help, to check in, to be there, weren't.

I'm struggling with recognizing my social circle is far smaller than I realized.  And acquiescing that so many people who I truly thought were friends, are merely just acquaintances. 

I'm struggling with trying to be a good mother.  A fair mother.  A fun mother.   I raise my voice too  much.  I say, "NO" far too often.  I don't play outside as much as we should.

I'm struggling with putting Grady in preschool all day, and then not spending any time with him when he gets home.  I schlep him all around, and then thrust an iPad in front of him to occupy his time so I can get stuff done.

I'm struggling with knowing next year is going to be an expensive year for us, and losing all the extra pay that Afghanistan brought to our pocketbook.

I'm struggling with getting to my email.  And responding in a timely manner to friends.  And family.  I fear that my delay appears as apathy, which couldn't be further from the truth.  But perception is reality ...

I'm struggling with cutting out all the bullsh*t in my life. 

I'm struggling with finding myself.  For I fear I've lost who I am under the mounds of cr*p sitting on my desk.

I'm struggling with the decision of selling vs. keeping our house when we move to El Salvador, knowing that we'll never move back into it again.

I'm struggling with Riley's feelings of angst to move again as she's now made such a strong group of girlfriends.  

I'm struggling with trying to disassociate myself from negativity.  I just don't want to be around it or partake in it anymore.  While it's so easy to be caught in the trap of looking at the glass half-empty, I NEED to focus on only seeing it filled to the rim with expensive red wine.

I'm struggling with maintaining the enthusiasm to keep this blog going.  

This isn't a cry for help.  Or a passive-aggressive search for sympathy.  It's the explanation as to why I've been so radio silent here these days, and on social media.  It's the culmination of too much time alone and way too much time to over-think.  It's the catharsis of accepting that I'm flawed.  That I'm trying.  That I believe in myself enough to know that this is too shall eventually pass.

Despite all this honesty, I AM happy.  I AM okay.  I DO recognize those who are dear friends.  And I DO see the beautiful light (in the shape of a 5'10'' soulmate) at the end of the tunnel.

But for now.  I'm Jill.  And I'm struggling with admitting I'm struggling. 

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