PEARL HARBOR (Sept. 21, 2012) Families of Sailors aboard the guided-missile destroyer USS Paul Hamilton (DDG 60) watch as the ship departs Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. Hamilton is scheduled for a 10-month deployment to the western Pacific. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Tiarra Fulgham/Released)
I recently got slightly jumped on in a forum I am part of for military moms, and to avoid being banned, I kept my mouth shut. I am thankful for this blog to be able to put what I want to say somewhere. I don’t write this blog to share some infinite wisdom or anything, I write it because I know out there in the world there is a liberal, irreverent military wife wanting to say the same things, and I hope that I am a good enough sounding board for her. I was raised by a liberal mom who taught me to think for myself, to be proud to have that liberty, and to challenge & question authority. (Although I would like to add, she hated when I questioned or challenged hers…LOL)
So this morning as I washed dishes my mind was racing with thoughts. First, I was dying for a cup of coffee after the late night courtesy of BabyBoyBrat staying up till midnight, thus me staying up till 2am. The coffee won’t happen for a while, but the other thoughts are about to be put out for the entire blogosphere to witness.
I define myself by many things, wife, mother, sister, cousin, daughter, niece, spiritual, faithful, loving, broken, fixed, but most of all I am just me. Of these things I am most proud of my role MILITARY wife and mother. My husband is in the military, thus our lives are centered around the military. I don’t have many friends outside the military and I am fine with that. My best friend lives hundreds of miles away and we don’t see each other for years at a time, but she is still my best friend. Her husband is also military and we understand each other. It’s hard to explain that to my civilian friends. My military friends are more like family.
Because my life is focused deeply in the military most of the things I am involved in are also military based. I am active in programs that are geared towards military families. I get involved with my husband’s command, I write on this military focused blog. It’s hard not to be part of this life when it’s all you have and know.
When my husband (DH) enlisted we were not “A Nation at War” 9/11 hadn’t happened, and my world wasn’t profoundly affected yet by the way the Navy would soon change. When he left for boot camp on Valentine’s Day 2001, little did I know I would face a back to back deployment!!! And yet I survived that and have a great love for the changes the Navy forced into me. I became strong, I learned to change a tire (well almost change a tire) in the rain in a ball gown, and deal with cooking for one when cooking for DH was like cooking for five. I learned to not be afraid to cross the street to knock on a door and say hello. I learned to schedule a PCS all by myself and when I needed it, where to get help. I still say that I grew up the most at our first duty station.
So while I am defined by a billion things, I am a Military Wife. When people ask me what I do, I just say wife and mom…but when they ask more, I tell them I am a proud military wife and mom. Yes I hate being away from my family, yes I hate moving every few years, yes it kills me when my children cry because daddy is gone, but we wouldn’t have it any other way. We are a proud military family. We all stand by as he serves this country with pride; we wait for our Sailor with dedication, love, and strength. We honor his duty to his country. While I am not a stand on the pier weeping wife, I stand there knowing that while his mission is ahead of him, so is mine. My mission is to make sure that our children are strong, that I remain steadfast, and that most of all when that ship pulls back in, I stand with our 3 amazing military brats on that pier with signs and flags proud and strong, just as he left us.
I hope that I didn’t offend, that is never my intention. The words are of my heart and I will not sugarcoat the reality of those thoughts. I love my civilian family & friends and I love my military family & friends…I carry you all in my heart ALWAYS!!!
~Fair Winds & Following Seas!~