Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Keeping The Love Alive, Military Style

We are a military family and sometimes the distance makes it more difficult than most. I know that there are OFW families out there who have the same fate as us but I think that the added danger makes it more difficult for us military families and so, how do you keep the love alive?

Keeping the love alive, military style, let me count the ways:

1. Know what you're getting into.

My family was never into anything military and therefore, I did not have any idea of what I was getting into. I took this line to heart which was said by our military ninong: "Are you ready?" I was fascinated by the pomp and pageantry and at the same time was lost in a sea of cadet lingo, military acronyms, and traditions. This could make a newbie military wife bewildered and at a loss especially when you do not have "military wife friends" and the husband is deployed immediately after your wedding. This can make you feel isolated and can cause a rift in the relationship. What to do? I read a lot about the military, the Philippine Military specifically, just to get a bird's eye view of what it was really about. It also helped that my husband gave me his booklet of cadet lingo and the traditions and practices that I was going to be a part of since the day I said, "I do." 

2. Accept the job.

After knowing about the military, I accepted the fact that there will be times that I would be alone and be the mother, father, handyman, etc and be ready to surrender those positions when the husband comes back home. Yes, through our years of married life, I have learned to fix the flush in the toilet, change lightbulbs, change fuses, fix plumbing (leaky faucets and such), do a little hammering which I have never imagined my girly-girly self would do.

I also accepted the fact that me and my girls would never be number. Yes, this is a little martyr, but they do not call their guns "wife" for nothing. I have made peace with this because I know that after the service, family is next.

* Image from the Philippine Army website

3. Make reunions happy ones.

Whenever my husband would come home (whether from deployment or from the office), the girls and I would make sure that the house is presentable (a haven, if you must), a hot meal is ready to be served, and show that we miss and appreciate the man of the house. I understand that it is hard to keep something from the ones we are closest to. There are aspects of his job that he can never tell me for security purposes and therefore, making the home a haven for him is a must. Have you ever tried keeping a secret which you wanted to tell you best friend, significant other, mother, sister, the ones closest to you, multiply that by 10 and you get the picture of the stress he is in. Home = haven is therefore a priority.


4. Keep lines of communication open.

 With the advent of cellular phones, the internet, messenger and Skype, it is never a problem to communicate with our man.  This is the one thing that keeps them from "losing their minds" and telling them that they need not worry for the ones they leave behind and concentrate on the task at hand therefore, not endangering their safety and others as well.  Messenger saved our sanities when he was deployed abroad for six whole months leaving me with the eldest and a three-month old baby to care for. I remember when he was deployed somewhere south and to get a text message or call through, he would have to climb a tree in order to get a signal along with his troops. How hilarious could that picture be right? Imagine a group of grown men, soldiers to boot, all up in the tree with their hands up in the air just to get a signal. Hehe.

*Image from here
5. Make yourself busy.

Yes the days of separation are long (three months at the minimum) but you shouldn't count the days when he will be back. Make yourself busy and soon enough the days will pass by and it will be time for the two-week R and R. In making yourself busy, you get to know and enrich yourself.
*Image from here

These are just some of the things that I have learned after being married to a military man and hopefully, you can learn from them also. I know that you have other lessons so please do share.  After all, sharing is caring!

Happy Heart's Day everyone!

1 comment:

  1. Hello Cherry! Found out your blog when you made a comment on mine. May you please email me your husband's name? Baka kilala ni husband ko. :)


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