First and foremost, I would like to thank each and every one of my participants for being willing to share their stories and experiences. Without their time and cooperation, this project wouldn’t have been possible. I would also like to thank my husband for pushing me to do this “passion project” and reminding me when I haven’t posted yet. Lastly, I would like to thank my mom who is a master proofreader and would always help me fix my typos.
Next I would like to share a few things that I have learned about military spouses.
1. Military spouses are such bad asses.
Different backgrounds, experiences, and personalities make all of us so unique. Despite all the differences though, we find similarities and familiarities within one another. A lot of this lifestyle can feel isolating, but it doesn’t have to be when you have the support of those around you, going through the same thing as you. When that isn’t enough, there is always wine…
2. Multitasking is a superpower that all military spouses possess.
With a million responsibilities ranging from moving and packing to taking care of dogs, cats, children, to keeping the house running, to staying sane, to working a job (or two), to making sure his/her spouse has everything they need to succeed and be “mission ready…” military spouses do it all, and they often do it all at once.
3. Spouses’ careers do not have to come second to the Marine Corps.
When the Marine Corps dictates where you live, when you see your spouse, and how often you move, sometimes your life feels out of your control. Many spouses take back that control by pursuing their own careers or creating their own businesses. They are adaptable as hell and learn to make the best out of every situation.
4. Resiliency is key.
The strength of a military spouse is unparalleled. Throughout my interviews and conversations, it was hard for me to determine whether we are innately strong or because we have no other choice. I describe myself as a very independent woman, but just because I am independent does not mean I am strong. My strength comes to me from my need to remain steady for my husband, despite any of the curve balls the Marine Corps might throw at us.
It has been my pleasure to shed some light on the trials and triumphs of military spouses around the Camp Lejeune area. It is my hope that these stories can connect spouses who may become friends and reassure spouses that they are not alone in the struggle that is the military lifestyle. Please know that my door (or phone line) is always open for a military spouse in need.
Thank you again to all the Despite the Distance participants, and my husband and mother, and everyone that was supportive of this project.
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