This list is much easier to make than the last. Some are funny, some are sad, and some are just plain frustrating, but I bet you will agree that they are all quite true!
1. Learning the Acronyms... PCS, NCO, MOS... ugh! Are you kidding me? Can we just say moving, boss and job like normal people?! After 10 years as a military wife, I catch myself talking in acronyms! Sometimes me and the kids make up our own and make him try and guess what they are....
2. Waiting... Waiting for pay to be straightened out, waiting to find out if you are leaving or not, waiting for the tricare to return a call, waiting for someone at Tricare to answer my call, waiting, waiting, waiting... as Dr. Suess would say... we spend a lot of time in the waiting place. I don't know that I deal with this one well. Would be glad for some advice!
3. Saying goodbye to your soldier... this is the hardest one to me...I usually cry and tell him I love him and cry some more... I hope to be a little more graceful the next time I have to say goodbye.
4. Saying welcome home... I know this one seems strange, but after a long adjustment period following his overseas deployment I feel this one is the most overlooked hardship as a military family. We have functioned as a single parent family for so long and he has functioned as a single soldier for so long... it is really hard to mesh again. I read After the War comes home and prayed and focused on making our family mesh again.
5. Telling the kids that there is an impending deployment... As we are stressed and focused on preparation for the year without our spouse its hard to remember that there are others that will be greatly affected by this deployment. My baby girl still cries when we talk about deployment. We talk about what will change and our plans. We also focus on what we will do when he returns. It gives us something positive to focus on.
6. Being restricted with our health care provider... we learned after my husbands first mobilization that Tricare was not well received in nonmilitary towns. So we learned that we could pay and keep our regular insurance while he was deployed. This actually worked out well, because several places filed it secondary and we did not have to pay much for visits.
7. Being around people that don't have the same communication values as we do... that means they cuss like we say "the". This is tough, because when my daughter was little she would ask about those words and what they meant.
8. Standing in line for IDs... we waited 3 hours for our last IDs. We made up stories about the lives of the people that were waiting, too. I am just thankful for the cushy chairs and tv while we waited.
9. Going through vehicle inspection to get on post... With four children and the two of us after a 6 hour trip in our minivan... well let's just say I am quite sure they were regretting pulling us over!
10. Not knowing... not knowing what the future holds is tough... not knowing with each phone call if our world will be rocked or not. Prayer and faith in God are the only way to deal with this one. Jeremiah 29:11 keeps us going!