Whether a military spouse or civilian, we need to support each other and build each other up instead of bringing each other down. If there is one thing I have learned, it is that banding together and making connections makes each change or roadblock easier to manage and makes life more fun.
I recently read something on the internet *I know, first mistake right there* where many were making comments dissing dependents.
I tried to let it roll off my back but ladies, if you are a dependent of your military spouse, that is something to be proud of.
We stand by our soldiers, giving up our own careers to support them and do what’s best for our families.
We often move every couple of years, sometimes across the country or even oceans away from our friends and families.
Some of us stay home and take care of the house and family while our service member works crazy hours, often gone from the home 12 hours or more a day.
We hold down the fort when they are gone in the field or are deployed for up to a year at a time.
We are strong, even if sometimes it is just a front, smiling through a Skype chat at our husband’s halfway across the world. We hold back our worries, our concerns, our daily problems, and sometimes our tears, because we do not want to burden them and cause them more stress than they are already experiencing.
We heat up meals and are understanding each time our spouse is late or has to cancel plans. We do not count it against them when they have to miss birthdays, anniversaries, or holidays.
Some of us struggle to find a job at each new duty station, trying to sell ourselves to employers that know we are only temporary. We hug friends and family that we may not see again for quite some time as we pack up our homes for another new home far away.
Some of us have to budget and struggle off one income because it’s just not feasible to get a job or to put the kids in daycare.
We juggle the kids, the house, our jobs, our education, and everything else, often by ourselves.
We take each change and move with as much optimism as can be mustered, trying to see the bright side of each new development. We try to make each new place special because home truly is where you are with your family.
For every roadblock that is thrown in our path, we make the best of it and form a plan B.
We see each move as a new adventure instead of another time to uproot our lives.
We band together, make new friends, and new memories in each new place for our family. We encourage our children to be optimistic and resilient in the face of challenges with moves.
We step out of our comfort zones for new job opportunities, volunteer opportunities, or just to help our kids enjoy a new place or make friends.
We are the backbones of our families. We bring a smile to our children’s faces, joy to each new home, and experience happiness that we are together as a family each day because it is not guaranteed.
This is something to be proud of. So despite what some may think, that we are “just dependents” or “sticking around for the BAH”, we are much more than what meets the eye. Being a dependent is more than what many think.
Don’t let anyone bring you down because you are a rockstar and life is what you make of it. So the next time you think you are “just a dependent”, remember that is just one of the many roles you have, and you are rocking all of them.
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