Deployment/PCS

What Does Deployment Teach Us About Being Self-Reliant?

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By: Angela Caban

Maybe it’s the constant separation, the days on end alone, experiencing different parts of the country or even the world, or maybe it’s just a quality we develop after years of being with our service member. We, military spouses, are often viewed by society as non-uniformed heroes. While we may not be rocking the spandex or a cape, many of us have sure become a “Jill of all trades”.

Jill-of-all-trades

“a woman who is versatile, and who can perform many different activities very well.”

Have you ever noticed that you are the person people call when they need something? No matter what the question is, the military spouse community turns to each other. I’ve received calls and texts many times. Am I a deployment and military life expert? No. But these people, my military spouse community seem to think I know it all. Funny thing is, after almost 13 years of marriage and being a military spouse, I do know this stuff. It wasn’t always this way, there was a time when I was a newbie and looked to my fellow spouses for advice too. I still lean on my fellow military spouses.

Military spouses know that when a spouse deploys, we must step up and take care of the homefront, no excuses. We may know an array of things we would have never envisioned ourselves knowing because we have had to learn it at some point when our spouses are away, we may have found ourselves in a situation we have never been in before. It’s amazing how resilient military spouses can be under a crisis; we figure things out because we have to. Many of us don’t have our family close, yet we are here to step up and help our fellow military spouses.

Personally, I love that we are challenged this way. In the thick of it, of course, I am annoyed that my car won’t start the day after my husband has deployed. After I get through it, I learn I can handle anything and knowing that gives me a confidence and faith in myself that I would never have had if my husband were home and would come to my rescue.

Developing a self-reliant mentality is something that can happen to us after various separations; many times we don’t even notice it because it is just a part of being a military spouse. We learn to take care of our family and make the decisions needed to survive and thrive.

From knowing how to change a flat tire to working, and cooking meals all while we have a sick child and errands to run, we know what needs to happen to get it done. Most of us have all been there. As Jill-of-all-trades, deployments teach us to assume the responsibility and make the decisions needed to keep moving forward.

Don’t take this responsibility lightly, be proud and keep on rocking that deployment!

What has deployment taught you? Share with us in the comments below.

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1 thought on “What Does Deployment Teach Us About Being Self-Reliant?”

  1. Good Afternoon,

    My name is Will Ezzelle and I am a student currently enrolled in ECU’s military and trauma counseling certificate. I am curious about the effects of deployment on military spouses and partners. I have friends who are military spouses and know that deployment can cause a lot of stress on the military spouse. I was hoping that you would be willing to provide a little more information about what you have experienced during your spouse’s deployment?

    Thank you,

    Will

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