Tuesday, April 27, 2010

How to suck it up Army style

I was talking to a slightly new-ish friend tonight. We hadn't talked in a while and we were catching up a bit on what was going on. And she was sharing her husbands schedule for the next year or so.

See, her husband is deployed with mine. And they also recently had their first anniversary. She is fairly new to the whole Army wife thing. His schedule for the next year is pretty hairy. Back and forth for this thing and that...she wants to bring her son to live with them, but is uncertain....doesn't understand why he wants to do this training course and this and that........pretty much the same old same old when you're in the Army. And she is frustrated, angry, and the rest of the feelings that come with that. And tonight she was sharing that with me.

I completely get it. I get the anger. I get the frustration. But being the old hat that I am (we're going on 7 years) with this Army wife thing, I am in a very different place than she is. And while I sympathized with her, and said YES! it does suck, and I'm sorry that it is frustrating for you. BUT suck it up my friend. And I tried to say it nicer than that, but it pretty much came out that way.

Because really, that is the life of the Army. They have to go. When you choose to join the Army (Or whatever other branch of the military) you have to take the good with the bad. For your regular paycheck, health care, housing allowance etc. you have to say goodbye to your husband an awful lot. More often than you want, and it sucks. But this is the life that you have. And there is little you can do to change it until your time is up.

I think my friend will get it. She is so new to this whole thing. She is still in the I'm angry phase. She will eventually move to the accepting phase, then to the I get that there is nothing I can do about it phase. It takes some time.

There are some instances where you do need to fight the All-Powerful-Army. You have to pick and choose them. So far, our fight was when my son had his surgery and the orders I got were only for me and my son to fly. Me being pregnant and fly back to the states to take my son to have head reconstruction surgery. Yeah, whatever Army. You WILL fly my husband with me. And we fought it. Our unit, seeing the wisdom in what we were doing, fully supported us, and even paid for his ticket and did everything in their power to get him there with me. It was worth it to fight it. But there are some fights that are not worth it. That is when you just suck it up and move on.

It is hard to do it. You don't want to. You want to FIGHT that All-knowing-entity that is the Army, Navy, Marines.....You cry, you yell at your husband, but it's not like he can do anything about it either. In the end, you resign yourself. And hopefully you learn from it. So that the next time a pile of crap gets dumped on you (because it will) you will know if it's time to stand up and fight, or if it's time to let out a big sigh and start looking for a new place to live, or gearing yourself up for another deployment, or......

I think it is harder for those wives that don't learn. That waste all this time in getting angry and making everyone around them unhappy, and nothing changes, nothing gets accomplished. And in the end, they wasted the time they should have spent in calling the movers, getting the house ready, and making sure your medical records go with them.

And now, since my washer stopped and I got the jeans in the dryer so that I can wake up to dry jeans (hopefully) I am going to go to bed. And get on with the resigned part of my life that is, oh, pretty much every day.

Just a few more months...(say it with me......) just a few more.........


Lei said...

Can't even imagine, you are a strong supportive woman, that's all i can say! So glad your friend has someone to help her buck up and keep moving. THANK YOU for the tip on the monkey hooks!!!

Steve-o said...

Most of our country could stand to suck it up a bit more and stop complaining.