So, there's been plenty of e-mail circulation about the military, regarding the sacrifices that our men and women in uniform make for us. I was recently watching and episode of "Say Yes to the Dress" a TLC show that is taped in a wedding dress shop (hmm not sure if that's technical term for a "dress shop"). There was a bride who had bumped up her wedding date due to her Marine husband's unavoidable deployment. Lucky women, she can try on wedding dresses, my wonderful husband and I were married in a court house with two other soldiers for witnesses. The wonderful part, "we were married!" Now, believe me, I've had my many moments of negativity. I still pine for the day I can walk down the aisle to my prince charming in a beautiful dress that makes me feel like his princess. There are many things about being part of a military family that might seem like a negative, but truly end up being many blessings in disguise. Here are seven things, from an Army wife, that have become unforeseen blessings.
1. Moving is part of the job. As in, you go when it's your time to go. However, think of the experiences of being in a new place, the joy of exploring a new home. I have experienced such freedom, such trust in myself being in a home away from our true "home".
2. Utter pride. Many women and men have pride in their spouses, but there is this pride that swells in my heart when I think of my husband's duty. Sometimes I feel inadequate next to him, but then I know in my heart that our children need me like our country needs my husband.
3. Trust. Not all spouses can say they trust their husband or wife from the very depths of their soul. We have been apart through deployments and through other events in our lives, but there is this trust that we have garnered with each other. I pray that spouses can have the trust within their marriage as my husband and I have in each other. (we all know many other military spouses aren't as lucky and experience the exact opposite, but stick with me here)
4. Learning. There has been nothing but learning through this relationship with my husband. I've learned about us as a couple, and I've learned about the woman I am. I am a strong, smart, beautiful, and a devoted woman. I am a great mother who has love beyond borders for her children and a wife who will wait up nights, even if it means she can hear from her husband for but a moment.
5. Strength. I have learned, there's that word again, that I have strength I never knew I had. I can take care of things, I can step up and deal with what life had brought me, what life has generously given me.
6. Education. I took some time for myself to further my own education and wal-la, I'll be graduating a month after my husband returns from deployment. One day, he will not have all the stress of finding employment on his shoulders alone. I will take care of my husband one day...and buy him another motorcycle (yes, two motorcycles will never hurt). (P.S. I also took up learning how to ride the motorcycle my husband bought as a going away gift...okay, so it's not technically a going away present, but I still tease him, nonetheless. The point is, finding something for yourself through all the chaos).
7. We have been chosen for something greater than ourselves. God has looked down at us and has noted that we will carry out great tasks. Someone else may call it what they like, but I am no fool, I know there is a higher power. He has chosen us to experience a part of life very few get the privilege to experience, (the pride, the joy, the sadness, the learning, the love, the trust, and the opportunities that come if only you release long enough to receive).
Don't get me wrong, life with the military can be difficult, but before you think it's all horrible, just remember there are positives to everything as well. Sure, my heart aches when I crawl into bed alone each night, but we will be together again real soon. My heart aches at the thought of our children without daddy for Christmas or their birthdays, but we have love and will prevail. Of course, if this was the start of the deployment I'd be singing in another tone (I know better to be honest). But that's the joy of life's journey. Just because you start off one way, doesn't mean you have to end the same way.
Keep an eye out for "Things You Learn After Military Separation" and if you like this post, please check out the link below.