Ah vacation … what is meant to be a great time to get away can be so very stressful. Especially those hours leading up to a trip.  Packing the van for a family trip is my personal hell.  Setting the expectation that my husband will help me when I want him to help me always leaves me… disappointed, frustrated, misunderstood.

To say my husband works hard is an understatement.  That I get.  Let’s put it this way, vacation is scheduled to start today (like at 0800) and he is at work.  There was nothing he could do about that fact.  I have accepted that because flexibility is the name of the game.  I had hoped last night after dinner we could get the car packed so that we could hit the road as soon as he was done today.  But when he plopped down at the home office to work at 7pm I felt somewhat betrayed.

Last night when the tears started flowing in the kitchen he walked out and I started to vent to him about this whole getting ready for the trip thing.  His response, “Then don’t do it.  Don’t pack if you don’t want to.”  It put me over the edge and I decided to follow his advice.

Out the door I went to sit with my two dear friends who I could see gabbing just across the street.  I wasn’t sure I wanted them to see that I had been crying but I realized I needed out.  I needed girlfriend time.  And I sure needed that glass of wine that I knew one of them would offer me.

Here’s the thing, I will not complain about Hubs to friends. I might tell friends about personal quirks or small things that make us bash heads but my best-friend (aka Hubs) deserves better then to be part of a bashing session with my friends, none of us are perfect. 

I never downright bashed.  I simply stated the problem to them.  From there my whole night got so much better.  Each of them told me, “Me too!  Let me tell you about our house just before a vacation…”  and off they went.  We laughed, we sipped our fruity drinks, they let me cry without need for feeling embarrassed, we even talked about the ‘Packing Fairy’ and the expectation that it will /just get done/.  They are what having girlfriends is all about.  After a couple of hours of gabbing we cleaned up, gave hugs, and Lori said, “You know, in 24 hours this all will be a distant memory and you’ll be on the road forgetting all this frustration with only the week ahead to look forward to.”  Best pick me up line of the night.

Who are your girlfriends?  Do they pick you up or bring you down?  True friends help you find the silver lining, remind you that you are /not/ alone, and don’t mind a moment or two of self-pity before you move on.

Now it’s time for me to finish packing but I have a smile a mile wide because /soon/ we will be on vacation!

– Leanne from

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Leanne is an Ohio Army National Guard wife, a mom to four boys and an Air Force Brat of many years. Even at 38, and after 11+ years of marriage she is learning new things every day; how to be a better mom, spouse, daughter, friend, even kinder to herself.   She writes to share these joys, frustrations and anything else this journey called ‘life’ throws her way.  You can read more blog posts by Leanne at:

byLeanne KocsisonWednesday, July 18, 2012Military Life:,,,

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