Life as a military wife and mother

How can I not? July 22, 2011

Filed under: Army life — holdingdownthehome @ 18:30

How Do You Do It?

I’ve been thinking about this post for a while. I have been asked this question innumerable times the last eight years, and more and more every year that passes. And even more since I started this small blog. It’s a really loaded question because there really isn’t just one answer.  If I had to pick one I would end up answering, “How can I not?”

Thanks to my parents, my Dad especially, I grew up respecting the heck out of the military (even though he didn’t necessarily like me dating them LOL). Now, having been “married to the military” for 8+ years, that respect has grown to overwhelming proportions. No matter the season my marriage was in, an up or a down, I have always been able to look at my husband in his uniform and be awestruck at the noble, courageous image of him. How could I ever go to that amazing man and say, “I don’t want you doing this deed for your home and country”? I couldn’t. Not ever.

As for how I do it… I have a very clear understanding that while we are an Army family, the Army oftentimes has to come first. The system wouldn’t work if it didn’t. My career and life are secondary to my husband’s. I have learned to accept and more recently to appreciate this.  I suppose not every woman or man would be okay with this. For me, I have realized this is God’s plan. I am a helpmeet to my husband. When I realized this, at first I was pretty put out. I mean, shouldn’t God have an awesome plan for my awesome self? (LOL) He does! And right now, this is it. Not very enlightened, huh? Oh well. Enlightened is over-rated. The only people I have to please are God, my husband, and my son. No boss, no co-workers. No reports, or deadlines, or phone calls. Just my family and my home. As for that opportunity? “How can I not?”

Does that mean that every minute of every day I am completely strong and put together? Not a chance. As a military wife we usually are expected to be strong all the time (or at least we feel that’s what’s expected). To put away the “bad” facts of this life. Often that’s what we do, but sometimes it catches up with us making for a bad day, or at least a bad few minutes. When we’re laying in bed the night before they leave we think “Will this be the last night we get to lay like this together.” When we drop them off and say goodbye, “Will this be our last kiss, the last time I’ll see him.” When he kisses our child, “Will our son remember him if he doesn’t come back?” When we argue on the phone or computer when they are gone we later think, “What if that’s the last conversation we have?” When we get word of a friend’s husband or wife being killed, “How would I be able to go through that?” I admit, it can make you feel very heavy sometimes when the worry and doubts creep in.

But God always lifts me back up. Sometimes he will just show me my son, who has a hero for a daddy. Or a stranger will come up to my husband in the airport just as he gets home for R&R and hand him money to take his family to dinner as a thank you for what he’s doing for this country. (yes this happened) Or my husband will send me an email just to tell me he loves me and is thinking of us. That is how I do it. I do it because God has asked it of me. Because my Husband has asked it of me. And they are both worth everything I can give them no matter what they ask of me. So, “How can I not?