Monday, March 11, 2013

My Love/Hate Relationship With the Military

FIRSTLY--I have guest-posted yesterday over at This Little Blonde--check it out :) 

In case you didn't know; my husband Daniel is active duty in the Air Force.

Air Force, military, Air Force Wife, MILSO,
I just love a man in uniform {at our sealing}.

Being in the Air Force has always been something Daniel wanted to do, and when we got the chance to make that happen for him, we jumped in with both feet.

I was 5 months pregnant when he signed up. 

I was 8 months pregnant when he got his job assignment.

Not gonna lie, I was Fuh-reak-ing OUT thinking he was going to be in BMT when Grace was born, because they give you the job first--they don't tell you when you will go to basic until later.

I was relieved when we found out he would be heading out to BMT in early August...but then immediately bummed out. That meant he'd be leaving pretty soon after Grace was born. 

I knew it was coming, I agreed to it. I thought I was prepared for it.

But nothing really prepares you for your when your husband has to leave you and your newborn baby. 

I cried for two days straight. Not kidding--ask my mother-in-law. 

I thought I'd be more prepared for this lifestyle, and for Daniel being gone. My father was a Green Beret for the Army for awhile, then he was a doctor (I think?) for the Army. (I am a litttllle fuzzy on those details.) Anyway, he was gone a lot. We moved a lot. I had the Army Brat lifestyle for awhile.
This past experience led me to believe that I would be an AWESOME military wife.

BAHAHAHA. No. 
Maybe I would have been at first without the crazy pregnancy hormones seeping out of me. 

Daniel left for BMT when Gracie was 2 months and 2 weeks old exactly. 

We were finally reunited in our home as a family at the end of November. 
We got to see him for precious hours when he graduated in October, but that was pretty much it.

While Daniel was gone, I found myself being completely resentful of his absence. The middle of the night feedings, all the diapers, all the crying--all of it--was completely on me. 

I felt like I was a single mother and I felt like I didn't sign up for that. 

Sooner or later I realized that was completely ridiculous and Daniel was gone because he was doing everything he could to provide the best he could for his family. I remembered the IN DEPTH conversations he and I had about the military and the sacrifices we'd have to make for the best way for us to provide for Grace. 

I remembered that WE signed up. While he may have signed the contract, it was just as much my decision as it was his. 

I immediately felt guilty for blaming Daniel for being gone, when in my heart (and mind) I knew Daniel didn't WANT to be gone--he had to be.

For some reason that still didn't help my attitude when we were FINALLY reunited.

I had gotten SO used to doing everything for Gracie that I found my self saying "You're not doing that right, here let me do it." and "You weren't there to learn that she hates that."

Little comments that were all basically saying "I was here the whole time. You weren't. You don't know and I am not happy about it." and I know hurt Daniel's feelings. 

Even though he's forgiven me for it, I still am angry at myself for saying things like that to him, my heart hurts every time I think about it. 

 He doesn't deserve to feel bad for his sacrifice he made to support his family like the great man that he was raised to be. 

I have slowly come to terms with the military lifestyle I am now in, and will be in forever more. I realized that it's harder for me as a wife than it ever was for me as a child. As we keep going on with our day-to-day routine, I feel like I am becoming more adjusted.

But there are days where Daniel's work will keep him busy, and I will freak out about it.

There was a day when I was seriously hurt and Daniel wasn't allowed to leave. I FREAKED. 

There are days where I literally only get to talk to him for about 10-15 minutes that day before we go to bed. 

There are days where I feel like joining the military was the worst mistake we ever made

But...

Then there are days where I look at my medical bills or my prescriptions and I am grateful for the health insurance.

There are weekends like this past one, where I am grateful we have such amazing benefits when it comes to taking care of Grace and her health.

There are days where I am reminded that not everyone has a house like we do to live in and not have to worry about how rent will be paid. 

There are days when I realize just how much divine intervention took place to get us to where we are now. 

There are days where I see complete joy in Daniel in what he's doing and how proud he is about what he is learning. 

There are days, most days...where I am 100% proud of my husband that he is the 1% of brave Americans serving the country that they love. 

When it all comes down to is this...

Our lifestyle is hard, hopefully it will get easier.

But we are so incredibly blessed to be able to have a roof over our heads, food in the fridge and in our bellies, good health, a little money saved and a little money to spend. Gracie has more toys than she can play with and if she should ever get hurt (she is trying to walk, it's gonna happen) there is great medical benefits to take care of it.


Simply put: we are blessed. 

Daniel, Gracie, and I at Daniels BMT graduation.

xo,
Tanika 
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Update on Gracie: Well appearances are deceiving, even though she is a HAPPY baby...Grace is as bad as she can get to be able to stay home. Basically that means if she gets ANY worse she has to go into hospital care.  We just picked up a nebulizer, hopefully Grace continues to beat the crap out of RSV! Sadly this means no church for her or me for 4-6 weeks because RSV is super contagious. :( Let's all pray she gets better soon!!!

THANK YOU for the messages of love and support! The prayers mean the world! 

3 comments:

  1. Praying for your sweet Gracie! And thank you to your husband, you, and your daughter; it's not just the servicemember who serves, but their family does also.

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  2. Still praying for the sweet baby girl.

    Your posts always capture my attention, whereas most that tend to be longer/deeper don't. I don't even know why, because I'm not a mom, nor am I married! But they do. And I look forward to seeing you all grow together. (:

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  3. That's awesome that your husband is in the air force. My husband always wanted to join, but that's not the kind of lifestyle I wanted for my famiy, so I'm really impressed that you're willing to make that sacrifice, because I wasn't.

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Thanks for taking the time to say something back! :) One sided conversations are never any fun! :) Thanks for reading!