Wednesday, April 23, 2014

I Am An Army Wife

Today I am linking up with Samantha from The Samantha Show to bring you a glimpse into the life of a military wife.

As many of you know I am married to my very own hero.  He has been protecting our country and freedom for 7 years now and I couldn't be more proud of him.

As proud as being a military spouse makes one, it doesn't come with a slice of pie always.  There are very difficult sides to military life.

When I heard about this link-up I knew that I had to join in.

One year ago today, was probably one of the scariest days of my life due to the military and I found it only fitting that I participate also.

Let's start from the beginning...

Ryan joined the California Army National Guard in October 2007.  We had just graduated high school and as any 18-year-old boy might do he joined and left a week later.  Ryan went to Mississippi for Basic Training and then lived in Missouri for a year while he completed AIT.

In 2008 Ryan was deployed to Afghanistan with the 235th Combat Engineers.  He was in Afghanistan when we fell in love :)  Hard to believe, but it is true.  We decided to be in a relationship together before we even saw, hugged, kissed, dated.  A risk that worked out miraculously for the both of us.

Ryan returned home from Afghanistan in November 2009 and we started our life together.  I knew that he was in the military and I didn't mind one bit.  Sure, while he was deployed and we went days without talking I got a little nervous, but when he was home it was all worth it.

Ryan being part of the National Guard means that he has Drill 1 "weekend" a month and two weeks a year in the summer.  Now, this provides us with a nice little additional income but doesn't come without it's own headaches.  Drill weekends aren't always just two days, so sometimes he has to take time off work.  Now we still get paid, but not as much as we would if he could work a full week at work and then the two days at drill.  And AT, it's in the summer and here in California they go to the most dreadful place and Ryan's dreads it every time.

Ryan once again deployed back to Afghanistan in 2012, 34 days after we said "I DO."  This time Ryan went with an aviation unit as a door gunner on a Chinook helicopter.  As terrifying as this sounds, I didn't feel more worried than I was last time.  I think that no matter what job you do, if you are in Afghanistan you are always at risk of not getting to come home.

So we dealt with our first year of marriage via iMessages, FaceTime and Facebook.  While that creates it's own difficulties his location in Afghanistan created more.

One year ago today, Ryan and his fellow soldiers were involved in a very close contact situation.  Two soldiers did not get to come home to their wives and children.  It broke my heart then and it still does.  My husband, and others from FOB Shank, wears a memorial band for them every day.  It was there on the day that we said "I DO" again and continues to be there.  Ryan lives a little more each day for those who can no longer do so due to this war.

As selfish as it was for me to be upset that I didn't get to hear from him that day due to the incident and them shutting off all Internet and phone services, I still can't help but feel annoyed that they can't tell you that they are okay.  I lived 274 days worrying about whether or not my husband would get to come home and I am so grateful that he did.

Being a military spouse is hard.  I believe that it takes a certain kind of person to endure this lifestyle.  I don't mean this to sound harsh, but I know that there are women and men out there that would not be okay with a life where they could move at any given time, be alone for months up to a year or more, or their spouse doesn't get to come home every night for a week out of no where due to training. 

There are horrible stories of soldiers getting cheated on while their spouse is overseas.  I find this disgusting and revolting.  How dare you break your commitment to someone while they are risking their lives for you just because you needs a little action!  It royally pisses me off when I hear about it and I made sure that Ryan knew that that would never happen to him. 

While I am not an active duty wife, I don't think that life in between is much different.  We all still need to help provide the best life for ourselves, spouses, children and family.  I thank the good Lord up above that he has brought my husband home to me twice.  I don't know how you ever repay that, but if I could I would.  

I love being a military spouse.  I love being married to a soldier.  I love that my son will grow up knowing that his Daddy protected this land that we call home and did it so that he could have a better life.

Next time you see a military spouse, tell them "Thank you" or give them a hug.  Let them know that they are doing a great job and that although it seems impossible, they will make it through to the next day.

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  1. Hi, Sara! I'm visiting from the link-up today! Great post! Do you still live in California? We were just stationed in San Diego last summer and so far I love it here!


  2. Visiting from the link-up too! Air Force Wife here. I can't imagine a deployment right after you got married. My husband left for BMT RIGHT after we had our daughter and was gone for about 5 months before we got to be together again. It was crazy and difficult. So I am with you on that. It DOES take a special kind of person to deal with all of this. And I am SO grateful your husband came home safely!!! <3

  3. What a great post. My heart goes out to you and your hubs. Army spouse here :)

  4. Great post! I can't imagine going through all this. I have dated a few military guys but I can't imagine what you went through. So glad he made it back safely!

  5. I love your post! I agree, there's no easy way to sugar coat takes a special type of person to be a military spouse.

  6. Great post. I also agree that it takes a special person to be a military wife. Not everyone can handle it. I can't imagine what your husband went through experiencing such a scary situation. But good for him for living life to its fullest. Stopping by from the link up!