Grow Where You Are Planted (Ask Molly)

I’ve been asked this question so many times that I cannot believe I have never written a post. In the comments, reader Desirae asks:

I need some help from all you other army wives out there… When I got told that being an army wife was one of the hardest jobs in the military, I didn’t really believe it. That is until I married my husband! I now have a new respect for all the women that have been doing this for years. I myself am a newly wed. Yep, as of October 2nd this year! But being away from him for these long periods of time is KILLING me. So can anyone make a few suggestions as to how I can start to deal with this a little bit better? I’m pretty lost. I think I’d really love an answer from anybody willing to give me ANY kind of suggestion! THANX!!!

Whether you are moving to a new country, an isolated posting, or your service member is deploying, I advise you to “grow where you are planted“.

Get involved, get busy.  Or, as Tim Gunn says, “make it work“.

Reach out to other military spouses. Find deployment support groups, try the FRG, volunteer on post.  Most posts have a community center where you will find postings for groups, classes, seminars and events.

You can also find other spouses online on military spouse community sites and bulletin boards.  And head online to meet people locally, too.  I’ve used meet-up to find kindred spirits.

Get involved in the community off post, too. Find things that interest you. Join clubs, take classes, get a job (if you don’t already have one), volunteer, go to concerts, etc.  Whatever your hobby or passion, you can find kindred spirits. Even in the smallest, most isolated post, you will find people making art, playing music, enjoying conversation, learning and living.

Consider your spiritual life.  If you are religious, this may be a good time to deepen your connection with your faith-based community.  If you are not religious, seek out other sources of positive energy for you.  This can be as simple as keeping a 10 minute “tea time” for yourself every day.

Stay away from negative people and drama that saps your energy. Focus on activities that give you strength and enjoyment.

This helps the days pass quicker and also gives you things to talk about with your spouse.  When you reunite, you will be glad that you also had new experiences that challenged you and helped you grow as a person.

At home, alone, at night, though, I find can be particularly lonely. I would use this time to write letters to my husband and put together care packages. This way I was doing something positive for him and our relationship.

I’d never say it is easy, but if you approach deployment with a positive attitude, you’ll find it goes quicker and easier!

What are your tips for making the time apart pass more quickly?

Photo credit: Seedling

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