An Army Wife's Life

Once upon a time I was a college student, then I was a teacher, and now I'm a mother. Technically, I'm currently a freelance writer... but really I am an ARMY WIFE. Expect to find... funny (at least to me) anecdotes, thoughts about la vida military, hopes, anxieties, dreams, commentaries on current events.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Memorial Day 2008: To Our Soldiers

Always on my mind is how blessed we are that Captain Dad returned safely to us from Iraq. And doubly blessed that all his men returned home, too. Other units, operating in similar areas, with similar missions met with ill luck.

Memorial Day is about remembering those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation and also acknowledging their impact on our lives--the freedoms we cherish, the peace we enjoy, and also the spirits that will always surround us.

And this day is also about their families--who carry the weight of that sacrifice.

This day is about those who have passed, but it is also about our living veterans.

Surrounding that soldier, young and strong, head bowed in respect; or that soldier, old and stoic in the neatly pressed remainders of his uniform; or that soldier, out of uniform, but always a a phalanx of comrades and a platoon of memories.

With their fallen gone to glory, these survivors bear witness and carry that burden of the lives unlived.

What these survivors sacrificed and lost along the way, as our guardians, our proxies, and sadly at times our scapegoats, we civilians, even those of us who have loved a soldier, may never know or understand.

Due to the abuse of Mr. Linky, I am just putting the relevant added links below:

1. Table for Five
2. Trish
3. Trish (eMOM)
4. Leaner
5. kbug

Those who abuse Mr. Linky and leave unrelated commercial links, especially on a post honoring our fallen soldiers, shame on you.


Monday, May 12, 2008

Advice for Dealing With Deployment

iVillage is one of the first "woman-oriented" sites I became aware of online. I've used a lot of their resources, throughout the years, especially once I became pregnant.

I never knew, though, that they had built a thriving military wives' community! And you can also connect with other long distance wives, some of whom are military and others who are geographically separated for different reasons--because sometimes a fresh perspective is just what you need to sort things out in your head.

I got a great e-mail tipping my off to Military Wives' 21 Best Tips for Dealing with a Spouse's Deployment.

I thought all the tips were helpful--even (or especially) the ones that contradicted themselves. There's no one right way to make it through deployment.

The tips that really helped me were:
16. Keep your husband posted. "I write letters to my husband every day (we don't have access to phones or email this time) detailing what our daughter did that day, so he will feel like he's part of her day-to-day life. I take lots of photos of our daughter to send to him. It's difficult because at times it feels like our lives are 'on hold' until he returns." --erinnicolevan
I took a lot of pride in creating care packages for him and his guys. In some small way, this helped me have an active role in the deployment, instead of just passively waiting for things to happen to me. And it pumped up his morale, which greatly improved mine.
19. Stay active. "I have found it vital to have at least one regularly scheduled activity while my husband is gone. It becomes something to look forward to each week, which gives me little milestones along the way." --lizzbert2000
I think I would have gone crazy if I didn't schedule activities. If I kept it loose, then I would just wake up and say, "I don't feel like it today." But if I knew other women, especially other military wives, were counting on me to show up, then I'd kick myself in the pants, get dressed, and get out the door. There's a lot to "Fake It Until You Make It." Sometimes you need a pity party, but most of the time if you just push yourself a little, you'll find yourself having a great time.

Which pieces of advice (from this list or off it) do it for you?

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