One thing a spouse going into a military marriage has to be prepared for is the effect (of the job) that carries into the night. I don’t exactly know how well my husband slept before I knew him, but I only know the man whose sleeping habits have been affected by a deployment to Iraq, a deployment to Africa, and intensive training.
Evan is an extremely heavy sleeper and does not wake up easily. He talks a lot in his sleep, and I’ve woken up to him wide-eyed and talking but still asleep. Many nights I’ve woken to him shouting orders, yelling about mortars or gunfire, or yelling at people to put their heads down. Most of these nights he’ll be sitting up, eyes wide open, and arms either flailing or “holding” a rifle. I can’t adequately describe the cold, steely look in his eyes.
During those times, I try to not touch him, for fear of startling him. Instead, I calm him with my voice and coax him to lie back down. Once he’s calm, I embrace him tightly and wonder what demons he’s fighting that night.