Being a Army Reservist's wife is a bit different from active duty. I get to have my husband with me more often than those who are married to an active duty spouse. We are very fortunate in that aspect. However, it also comes with it's drawbacks.
When Chris deploys, it doesn't take long before I realize how it's the little things that make having Chris at home so much easier. The little things like having him crawl into bed beside me and keep me warm when it's freezing cold outside, or just knowing that he is there seems to help me have the strength to go through each day. When he's gone, I find I slowly shut down and struggle to do even the daily things. Laundry isn't as fun, because the kids don't really appreciate that I do it for them - they just take for granted that it will happen. Cooking stinks, because who likes listening to children gripe that they don't like what you fixed for supper. Deployment usually means that I spend more money on oil changes and car repairs that Chris would take care if he were home. And it never seems to fail that things always break down in the house after he's deployed so I'm left trying to figure out how to replace an air conditioner or a rip out plaster and lathing so I can re insulate the house and bring our utility bills down.
Then there is the news - everyone but me watches the news. So usually people who mean well call when soldiers from our area are killed. However, I have to give them props, once I talked with them they seemed to get it quickly. When I know you'll know.
There are a lot of soldiers who miss out on a lot of things with their children. They miss the first steps, first teeth, first words. Chris has missed a little bit of something with each girl - Sarah it was from 4 months until he returned from Korea; Elizabeth - he missed her 2nd year and 3rd birthday; and with Beka he left weeks before her 2nd birthday and when he came home she was just a few months shy of her 3rd birthday. He missed her hair growing out so she looked like a little girl - Beka learning to do a lot of new things. And he hated that he had to miss these things with Sarah, Lizzie, and Beka - but he also knew he needed to go with his men. Being a soldier means you want to be with your family but you are also compelled to go and take care of your men. It's a double edged sword.
This is just being a reservist's wife. My cousin, Dacia has it tougher - her husband has faced many deployments to Iraq and they are currently living in Korea. They move a lot. And the Army isn't always the best about keeping their word, so just because they promise one thing doesn't mean it will happen. Being in the Army means a lot of goodbyes and it isn't a life for every person. Not every spouse understand and that's why there are often divorces. It is tough to move every few years, have to re-establish yourself in a new place and find new stores, doctors, etc. . .
So today please be sure you thank a soldier or sailor for their service. The sacrifices they make are greater than most people know or understand.
Thank you so much for all you do. We will remember your sacrifice and what your family lives w/o on a daily basis.
Love in Christ,