Salute to Spouses Blog

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You’re Not The Only One

I’m seriously losing my mind. Between my career, my house, four boys in hockey and our new Little Miss, well … things are slipping. Forget that. Things have slipped more than bald tires in a Fort Drum winter. 

While at hockey, because I’m pretty sure we live at the rink right now, I started talking with another mom who happens to also be in our unit. While we laughed about the things going awry in our eighth months of deployment, she said, “I’m so glad I’m not the only one.” 

Let me tell you, ladies, you’re not the only one. 

If your spouse is deployed, and you’re having a hard time, I promise – you are in great company.  We’re all struggling in some way or another, trying to fill this void in our lives that’s been left empty since our spouses have been gone. But we’re also walking this fine edge of balance, trying to keep that void a little empty so our soldiers can fit back in when they get home. We walk this edge, dance, trip, and stumble over it. The journey can be maddening. 

So just because you think Spouse A has it all together, perfectly-dressed kiddos, immaculate house, well-balanced emotions, well, that doesn’t mean she does. Chances are if you open up about what you’re having a hard time with, she will too. I’ve been a military spouse for a dozen years and have yet to find a spouse who doesn’t struggle during a deployment. I’ve always heard that there is strength in numbers, and that sentiment couldn’t be more true for military spouses. When we share our battles, we also share our methods to overcome them. 

After being at war for more than a decade, chances are, whatever you’re struggling with has been conquered before, maybe even by someone you know. You’re not the only one who’s ready to slip her kids into straightjackets to keep them from hitting one another, or struggling with a term paper and a crying baby. Others have been there, are there, will be there. You’re not alone, and sometimes knowing that makes all the difference. 

As cheesy as it sounds, we’re all in this together, living the same experience. We have each other for support and understanding, because no one can empathize with what you’re going through quite as well as another military spouse. 

And remember, you’re not the only one struggling through the holidays. You’re not the only one ready to scream about the insanity a deployment brings or the only one to get kicked by the pesky deployment gnome. There are others, and we’re here, ready to tell you that we’re battling too. Because when we can stand up together, and admit where we’re falling short, we can help one another fill those gaps, and say the one thing we all need to hear: it’s going to be okay. This deployment will end.

So you, struggling over there with the dirty dishes in the sink, and the fighting kids and the “change me” oil-light on in the car, just in case you can’t find another spouse to open up to, I’m sending you a giant cyber hug to tell you’re not alone, and you’re going to be okay. We all are.

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