God has a sense of humor, or He simply heard my cries yesterday…I’ll tell you why.
With the days going by faster than the bullet train, I have started to get more and more stressed out with the idea that we are moving. THERE IS SO MUCH TO DO and SO LITTLE TIME! I had a mini melt down last night with Ali, telling him that I am just one person and I needed help with this whole moving process. I know that he has been busy with work, but when I get home and not only do I have homework, but I have house chores to do, I admit I crack just a little more.
Passport still needs to get ordered, dental work, down sizing…how do I pick and chose what memories I want to keep with me, and how do I choose which ones to throw away? The idea that I have to pick and choose memories to fit inside a book size box, can be daunting to anyone. The idea that we are limited in the number of pounds we get to pack up and ship out, can even be more stressful…the couch? How much does that weigh? Do I REALLY need all that yarn?
Well, I get an email from Ali this morning and I instantly start to tear up after reading the first few lines. The chaplain of the squadron sent it out THE DAY AFTER my mini breakdown…it reads as follows:
“Lots of moving… Moving… Moving… Moving far from home… Moving two cars, three kids and one dog…all riding with the military spouses…of course. Moving sofas to basements because they won’t go in THIS house; Moving curtains that won’t fit; Moving jobs and certifications and professional development hours. Moving away from friends; Moving toward new friends; Moving the most important luggage: the trunk full of memories.
Often waiting… Waiting… Waiting… Waiting for housing. Waiting for orders. Waiting for deployments. Waiting for phone calls. Waiting for reunions. Waiting for the new curtains to arrive. Waiting for the military member to come home, For dinner…AGAIN!
They call them ‘Military Dependents’, but they know better: They are fiercely In-Dependent.
They can balance a check book; Handle the yard work; Fix a noisy toilet; Bury the family pet…
They are intimately familiar with drywall anchors and toggle bolts…can file the taxes; Sell a house; Buy a car; Or set up a move…all with ONE Power of Attorney.
They welcome neighbors that don’t welcome them. They reinvents their careers with every PCS; Locates a house in the desert, The Arctic, Or the deep south. And learn to call them all ‘home’. They MAKE them all home. Military Spouses are somewhat hasty… They leap into: Decorating, Leadership, Volunteering, Career alternatives, Churches, And friendships. They don’t have 15 years to get to know people. Their roots are short but flexible. They plant annuals for themselves and perennials for those who come after them.
Military Spouses quickly learn to value each other: They connect over coffee, Rely on the spouse network, Accept offers of friendship and favors. Record addresses in pencil…Military Spouses have a common bond: The Military Spouse has a Companion unlike other Companions; their mate’s commitment is unique. He/she doesn’t have a ‘JOB’ –it is a ‘MISSION’ that one can’t just decide to quit… on-call for the country 24/7. But for the military spouse, their confidant can be the most unreliable person in town! Military language is foreign TDY PCS OPR SOS ACC BDU ACU BAR CIB TAD EPR And so, a Military Spouse is a translator for the family. They are the long- distance link to keep them informed; the glue that holds them together.
A Military Spouse has moments: He/She wants to wring necks sometimes; Dye uniforms purple; Refuse to move to Siberia; But they pull themselves together. Give them a few days, A travel brochure, A long hot bath, A pledge to the flag, A wedding picture, And off they go. They pack. They move. They follow.
Why? What for? How come? You may think it is because they have lost their minds. But actually it is because they have lost their hearts. It was stolen from them by an citizen soldier, Who puts duty first, Who longs to deploy, Who salutes the flag, And whose boots in the doorway remind them that as long as they are military members, they will remain the military spouse. And would have it no other way.”
THIS. THIS IS EXACTLY HOW I FEEL. It gave me comfort that I am not the only person that feels this way. It made me feel NORMAL. It isn’t easy, but yes, we wouldn’t have it any other way. So to the military spouses just like me, who are worried about what can and can’t go with you to your next duty station….WE CAN GET THROUGH IT.