I have figured out why it’s so hard to develop and have good relationships as a military spouse. Life. The normal kids, school, Church, family. But more than that the whole promotion, TDY/deployment, PCS and longing to be home, which is different for everyone. I am going to explain a little bit about how I am affected by a few of these things.
I’m not another wife who thinks my life is any harder than anyone else’s. I actually feel very lucky that my husband and I have only been separated 3 times in 11 years. 1 deployment and 2 TDYs. I appreciate those who endure the hardships of deployment and undetermined separation. Believe it or not that plays a huge role in why some friends may be harder to reach at times. Being both mom and dad for a time is in no way easy. No one says hey that sounds fun. There are people who will steer clear of friends because they are in this situation. Instead I try to do what I can to befriend and help them. That’s how I met my friend, Katherine. She was about to have her first baby and her husband was deploying. I knew as a Catholic the right thing to do was befriend her but even more as a retirement bound spouse. I am so glad I overcame my awkwardness enough to reach out to her. (We are really good friends now.) Katherine is just one example of me reaching out to someone and hoping they wanted and excepted my friendship.
PCS (permanent change of station) is another big one. It is one I seem to have a really hard time dealing with. I have a friend, Alexa who moved what felt like way too soon. We were able to grow a friendship in 2 or 3 months before her and her sweet family moved away. I still have a hard time with this not sure if it’s because she was my first friend here in DC or because the move was so sudden. If you are wondering if we are still friends the answer is yes. (I think she is stuck with me) I am not sure how we grew such a friendship in such a short time but that is not usually the case. There are people who I have wanted to have a friendship with where there just wasn’t any time. Right now it’s PCS season and well I kinda hate it. A lot of the friends I have made will be moving. I am happy they will get to have a lot of new experiences and make new friends but I’m still sad. I think I have mentioned before I moved a lot as a kid. Moving wasn’t easy but somehow as an adult all the friends moving away is harder. When I say we are going to PCS soon I don’t really think about how it will affect someone else just that I want to move away from the East Coast. I can always tell the long term friends from the short term friends.
Homesick is another hard one for us. Where is home? I am asked this question over and over again. Where is home?Some people seem very perplexed when I answer. Kinda like I just told them I found a dinosaur egg in my back yard. Anyways, my answer is always South Dakota. Some people either stay in their bubble only being happy when they are home while others make the best of where home is for that amount of time. So the funny thing about my love for South Dakota is when I was on the plane from Denver my first time arriving in South Dakota I wanted to cry. All I saw was weird yellow grass, no lakes, and less than a few trees. I knew it was going to be hard to live in this place that seemed devoid of water. I did nothing but long for the beaches, lakes, and springs from back home in Florida. Florida was my home for my younger years. Anyway, back to what I was saying. Even though the first days, weeks, and months were hard,I survived. I didn’t really have a great appreciation for South Dakota until I met my husband. We went to so many places and did so many wonderful things it was hard not to fall in love with South Dakota at the same time I was falling in love with George. South Dakota is a beautiful and weird place. I can’t wait to show the kids all the wonderful things the great state of South Dakota has to offer. One day we will move back and once we do I don’t plan on leaving. It’s where we met,were married (the first time), and had our first child. It Is Home. So the point of all this is to let you into a very small window of what life for me as a military spouse is like. There are lots of ups and downs but I am very happy and proud to be an Air Force Wife.