Family First | Here comes deployment

Family First | Here comes deployment

So Thankful

I’m so thankful for the people in my life who encourage and support me daily. I don’t think it’s said enough how important it is, as human beings, to encourage each other’s hearts and spread kindness.
 
That being said, I have some news to share… 

A Year Apart

As many of you know, Drake is an officer with the Army National Guard. He’s been in for almost eight years and this June, after eight years in the Army, he will be preparing to deploy to Kuwait. He is headed to training for a few months and then he will head to Kuwait. We say goodbye when he leaves for training and we will be apart for about a year. There’s not many ways to say how we feel about the deployment. To be honest, it’s scary and I’m not quite sure HOW I’m going to hold down the fort while he’s gone, but I know I WILL. Birthdays will be missed, milestones will be shared via FaceTime, the holidays will be very different, but, I can’t help but be so proud of my husband and everything he is doing. He has so much to give the Army and he loves what he does. I’m praying for his safety and looking forward to the day he’s home for good, even though he hasn’t even left yet. 

How do I navigate motherhood, self-care and my work?

My brain is one constant news ticker. There are questions going through my head every second… zooming past and on to the next. What do I do about work? How would I even make it through Hurricane season without a backup plan? Can I make this work? Do the kids stay in daycare? How will Camden adjust? How will Kate adjust? Can I work from home? Will I go crazy if I don’t work? How will I get me time? When could we go visit family? Can family visit us more? Do we sell a car? What do we have to have ready and prepared as far as documents and legal paperwork? What about health insurance? The list. Goes. On. 

Sometimes the hardest thing and the right thing are the same...

It’s one of my favorite lyrics… and it’s so true. Sometimes the hardest thing and the right thing are the same. This past month I had to make one of the hardest decisions of my career. I’ve been the Digital Executive Producer at ABC Action News since February of 2017. Before that, I was a producer for about 8 months. I love what I do. I love being in the know. I love sharing news that impacts the community and I love writing (This blog is a testament to that). I’m so proud of my career and the things I’ve accomplished. Who knew this art major would go from Morning Show Radio Co-Host to TV Trending Reporter to Digital Content Manager and Digital Executive Producer in a top 15 market with the best team a manager could ever ask for. I’m so proud of everything we have done together and I know I’ve taught them well. Hell, they’ve taught me so much as well. Even more so, about myself. Things have been crazy at times. News can destroy you, but it can also lift you up. And don’t even get me started on my boss, Matt. Matt and I were meant to work together. He’s the ranch to my buffalo sauce and the work we’ve done together has been so rewarding. He’s taught me so much about news but he’s also taught me so much about myself. I’m forever grateful for the people I’ve worked with at ABC Action News in Tampa. I’ve made best friends, I’ve created a support system and I really can’t see these people not being in my life one way or another. 

Being a Mommy to Camden and Kate (and Tatum and now Moose) has been my greatest accomplishment. My team my bosses and my friends all know that. And when Drake leaves in June, my babies will need me. They will need Mommy to have more time for them. Right now, my days are a constant rush. I rush to work, rush to the store, rush to daycare to pick up the kids, rush to bathe everyone, rush to make dinner, rush to a decent bedtime, it’s rush, rush, rush. Camden and Kate (and me) deserve a slow down. 

So, this month, I made the decision to step down from my role as Digital Executive Producer. I’m going to work from home as a Social Media Specialist and finally get that LLC going to do graphic design and social media management on the side. (If you can help me with this, please let me know, I’m clueless but I’m so excited to start it).

May 10, 2019 will be one of the hardest days. I’m going to leave my unbelievable team and some of the best friends I’ve made in Tampa, but one thing is for sure… we won’t lose touch. Lunch dates, baby play dates, beach time… I’m going to need it all, and you know it will involve the people I’ve spent the last 3 years growing with. 

I'll be sharing a lot more with you

In the coming months I’ll be sharing a lot more about the process of preparing for a deployment and more about what I’m doing next. But for now, I just wanted to let everyone know we’re getting ready for big changes. Please pray for our family and for Drake as he gets ready to head out on this deployment. 

I love you all. Thank you so much for being there for my family. Oh, and don’t be strangers… I’m going to need all the adult interaction I can get over the next year. 

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Glad and sad you’re doing this. You’re right. The kids are going to need more time. I admire you and Drake for what you are doing. The family will be in my prayers. Love y’all!

    1. Thank you so much Aunt Debbie! It’s going to be a crazy adventure. If you want to come spend some time in Tampa, you just let me know 🙂

  2. Just a Mom wiping tears and reading blog posts over here. Sending all the Mama love and prayers your way. You’re going to do great (as Joey would tell me). You’re already a great Mama and you won’t stop that just because Dads away for a bit. You got this! 🙂

    1. Thanks so much Britt! If you ever want to have play dates, you know who to call! 🙂

  3. You’ve got this Kelly. No doubts in my mind. I think you are wise with Drake deployed to have more time with Camden and Kate. This will be like a child waiting for Christmas – the time will go slowly , and yet with the two little ones it will go fast. – you will be so busy. How wonderful to have FaceTime with Drake – he will get to see his little ones and you over the year and that will be so special. All Americans thank him for what he is doing for our country. <3

    1. I agree Aunt Dottie! We’ll keep in touch and share all of the exciting things along the way, even some of the not so exciting struggles. Love you!

  4. Hate to hear about your upcoming deployment, but it sounds like you are on the right track to setting yourself up for not only survival, but thriving as well. I’m sad for you that you’re leaving your amazing work, but happy that will leave you with more free time. I want to be on your regular rotation of lunch dates! And sign me up for homecoming pictures in August 2020!
    Let me know how we can help you- we’ve been there and done that- I know what it’s like to be totally in the weeds with two littles. You’re going to crush it, but it’ll be hard. Let’s get together soon to discuss your plans. Xoxo

    1. YES! We will definitely make lunches happen and we will spend more time together. Preparing for this deployment has been nuts… and it’s only just beginning… Thank you so much for the support and can’t wait for the memories to come. 🙂

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