Do you have a husband who travels sometimes for work? I do. He’s traveled periodically ever since my first was born. Especially the first few years, when he was away, the days as a stay-at-home mom were long with a couple of babies, and I always felt like my responsibilities were never ending – the dinner, baths and bed routine was especially tiring solo (and still is quite honestly).
It’s still not fun when he’s gone, but let’s be honest. Sometimes it is nice to have control of the remote once the kids are down.
But when my husband does travel, it really makes me appreciate a certain mom: a military wife! How does she do it? How does she say goodbye to her husband knowing he won’t come home for 6, 8, even 12 months and is most likely in harm’s way? How does she deal with the constant pressure of parenting alone, maybe reporting to her own job every day, and worrying about her spouse’s well-being? How does she handle the loneliness? (I’ve found the mood of an afternoon will change when you know someone else will walk in the door at 6:00 pm. If you don’t have it, it gets very lonely and very long.)
If I were a military wife, I really think I would have to get up on some soapbox Uptown and scream “THE FATHER OF MY CHILDREN IS GONE FOR 12 MONTHS – RISKING HIS LIFE – FOR YOU! WHAT ARE YOU DOING FOR ME?!”
Would people even care? Or would they commit me to the looney bin and take my kids? (Probably – I guess that’s why I don’t see many wives doing this.)
Even if I didn’t go so far as a soapbox, I think I would have to tell everyone I saw – at Harris Teeter, Target, the park – just so I could get a shred of sympathy. But no one ever tells me she is a military wife, and I’m sure I’ve run in to plenty unknowingly. This just shows how selfless they are. Truly unspoken heroes.
Happy Fourth everyone, and thank you to all the military families for sacrificing for us!