Today’s Military Monday topic is about the changes that occur in a service member and their spouse during training or deployment. This is a perfect topic for new military wives. I remember when I was preparing for Hubby to come home from AIT. I was nervous and excited at the same time. But I remember asking myself, what’s life going to be like now that he’s coming home? I had heard horror stories of people coming back totally different and the spouse not liking the changes that have come. I was afraid that my sweet, thoughtful husband would come home acting like the guy from the movie Major Pain.
Luckily, most of the changes that came to Hubby were positive. He was more disciplined and motivated. My favorite change in him was the way he carried himself with more confidence and self-assurance. The training didn’t make him cocky by any means… just confident in his ability and his purpose as a soldier to his country.
I think the biggest changes came in me. I became more confident as well. Five days before Hubby left, we moved into a new apartment in a new neighborhood. We lived in married student housing in a college town so we lived in a close proximity to a lot of people. A lot of activities took place to promote a friendly community. I realized early on that I could either go to these activities alone and make friends, or I could stay home by myself all summer and be the hermit. That didn’t sound like fun to me so I went and I made some great friends.
Another change in me was independence. My parents did a pretty good job at teaching me to be independent but my independence was turned up a notch when Hubby was at BCT and AIT. I missed him the whole summer but I also learned how to do a lot of things by myself. Here’s one example: I get so nervous traveling to new places by myself, especially if I have to drive a car that’s unfamiliar to me. I learned how to drive on the same car that we own now so I don’t have a lot of chances to drive other types of cars. But when Hubby graduated from BCT, I flew out to Columbia, South Carolina by myself and navigated the roads in an SUV, which is a lot larger than the car I drive now. I only got lost twice but was able to find my way. A few months before, I never would have had the courage to do something like that.
I learned that I never have to do it alone. I learned that it is okay to ask for help when I need it. And I learned that I don’t need to be strong all the time. And when I can’t be strong, I learned that there will always be people there to help me through the difficult days.
I am grateful for the changes that have happened to both of us as a result of Hubby joining the military. We have not been through a deployment as yet but I know that while Hubby was in his initial training, we were being somewhat prepared for whatever is thrown our way as a military family. By no means do I think we know everything, I'm sure there will still be curveballs thrown our way, but whatever it is, we will be able to handle it together.
That’s it for me. Do you have your own story of how you or your significant other was changed during training or deployment? Then head on over to Cat’s 5 Nuts in a Nutshell to join in the discussion.