When my husband and I lived in Maryland, after we were newly married six years ago, I suddenly found myself plopped down in the middle of military life. We lived in an area in MD, which was about twenty minutes north of Washington, D.C., and twenty minutes south of Baltimore. From DC to Annapolis, military folks were everywhere.
It was only natural for me to take an interest in the hit television series on Lifetime, Army Wives. Since military life was all around me from the navy to the army, I was suddenly emmersed in a different culture. My husband and I were often met by groups of Navy men and women, running up and down the beach on our day trips to Annapolis, and we spent Easter Sunday at Ft. Myer Army Base, adjacent to Arlington National Cemetery.
Sacha and me- Ft. Myer, VA- 2009
Being on the army base really made me think about what life was like for military families. It was humbling to be in the presence of so many military men and women, who gathered together to worship on Easter Sunday... men and women who put their lives on the line, to protect me.
Of course, the series Army Wives painted a picture of what military families deal with and go through on a daily basis. In our own family, we have a cousin who's husband is in the military, and their family of five has moved several times in the course of the six years that Sacha and I have been married. I can only imagine what it must be like to have to deal with securing housing on post, or even off post! A great resource for military families is militaryfamily.org.
My dad is a church musician, and in my childhood, we moved four times. I attended six different schools from elementary school to high school. It was a lot of adjustment for me, and my sister to be in so many places- making new friends, etc... and I can't imagine what it was like for my parents, making sure we had good housing and that we were going to wind up in good schools.
With military families, when a service person gets their orders, they have to go where they're told, when they're told to go. Families are often wait-listed for housing, which is why some families choose to live off post. There are so many things to consider when their are children in the mix. Moving is definitely part of military life, and knowing what to expect is definitely helpful. Talking to the children is so important, so they can understand the family's commitment to the military, and why they're never in one place for very long. Open and honest conversation and communication is key for making these types of transitions go as smoothly as possible. You can also find great tips on how to plan your military family move!
I know that I'm not faced with these issues, personally, but you never know... my husband has made mention of wanting to play in the President's Own (military) Band, and if that ever happpens, it's the military life for me, y'all!
Do you have any military life advice or tips?
We'd love to hear them!