At Army Wife 101 we keep it 100% real over here. We love unicorns and blow pops on the occasion, but because I love giving it to you raw… okay that didn’t come out right. Instead, I should say I like giving you the real deal Holyfield which is more our style.
Marrying into the military life can seem like dreams of a man in uniform sweeping you off your feet, picking you up and traveling the world. And that can definitely happen! However, the reality is there are a lot of challenging times in this lifestyle that you better be ready to endure. There’s not too much prep for those challenges other than knowing they are going to happen and to be ready for them. However, I thought I would do you a favor and give you a heads up.
Know that Bootcamp and AIT will be what I like to call the “training phase” for you too. This will be the first time that you and your loved one are apart for an extended period of time. You will get to know what life is like with little to no voice communication, letters only (unless they’ve changed things), and spending a lot of time on your own. It’s going to be hard and tough, but you will survive. I’m writing this post…aren’t I!
Everything You’ve Ever Known
The above sentence pretty much sums it up. There is no telling where Uncle Sam and his cronies will send your family. So be prepared to know that you could be moving halfway across the world with about a month to prepare. If you’re a small town girl and used to being around your family and friends everyday, this can be a major shock to the emotional system.
I’ve never been one to say that we struggled in the military because we honestly were always comfortable. We lived on base, didn’t really have any utilities, and we weren’t wanting for anything. Could we go out shopping for new stuff every week… no! That being said, despite political opinions and the fact that I think military personnel should make much more, the military does alright. I don’t think you should be worried about money. The military is about as a secure as you can get. Well, there is that threat of a government shutdown every year!
For Introverts Only
If you are an introvert ( as I am) then be prepped to come out of your turtle shell a little bit, or at least enough to make a friend to put down on your emergency contact form. It seems like schools on military bases think we come there with pre-packaged friends! If you don’t have kids it’s still nice to know someone when your fur baby needs a baby sitter or just to have to talk to.
Handling Your Own
Please know that Uncle Sam does not really care about you and your minor problems. Don’t get me wrong, the military certainly has its family friendly moments, but there are so many situations that will arise where you will think it warrants your spouse to be there and he won’t be able to be. Just understand that you are entering into a lifestyle where you are literally the mistress. Know that many things you will have to handle on your own and that your husband’s service is about something much bigger then you.
Know that some duty stations will be awesomeness and some will be less than stellar. You just have to keep in mind the cliche about this “being one big adventure”….yada yada yada.
Get A Hobby
No, like seriously run and get one ! If you don’t intend on working, then go find something that you like to do. You will need it because unless your spouse lucks up and has a nice cushy MOS where he rarely deploys, or goes on TDY’s, or has a lot of field time-you will be spending a lot of time alone.
Know that deployments absolutely do and will always suck. That being said technology has changed things and so phone calls and internet time are much easier than they were even 5 years ago. Do be prepared for things like black outs where they can’t talk or call. Oh, and despite what you have heard about the FRG (Family Readiness Group) these chicklets have their ear to the ground on all things deployment and happening with your spouse’s unit so go to some of the meetings.
What else do you tell new military spouses…share below!
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