I think the hardest job in the military is not that of the spouse, like you commonly hear, it is being a child of a military family. Childhood should be filled with yellow, sun-colored memories and laughter, and sometimes you don’t get a lot of that as a military child. These kids endure moves every few years; they leave behind schools, friends, and all that is familiar. They also say goodbye to one or both of their parents for six, seven, twelve, eighteen months at time, while that parent serves in a warzone thousands of miles away. The military child is brave and tries to understand, but often the complexities of the adult world, a world at war, are too much for their big hearts to comprehend.
April is the Month of the Military Child, and I thought I’d share my wishes for my very special little hero: my 3 ½ year old daughter.
Military Child, I wish for you:
Love, whether mommy and daddy are near or far, they will always love you
Comfort knowing that your mommy/daddy only leaves you so that everyone in this great country can be safe
Peace in that you are always, and I mean always, in his/her thoughts
Pride in your hero, because he/she is proud of you
Home is where your family is (and your toys)
Friendship, may you make friends with every new PCS and keep the old friends from your last home for many years
Security, know when you are scared, you are not alone. Mommy and Daddy are scared, too, but you always have each other
Smile, you are lucky to be a part of such an amazing extended family of military families all over the world
Courage, bravery, strength to face all of the challenges the military lifestyle can present us with
Confidence in the beautiful person you are
This lifestyle is definitely what you make of it. For some, it’s less than ideal, but for families like ours, it is perfect! I cannot imagine our family living any other way. We’ve met the most wonderful friends, and lived in some great places. I think that it makes our daughter more adaptable and independent. Sure, we always have to expect the unexpected, and we’ve definitely learned to be flexible, but what an amazing journey we’ve had so far! The military children I know are the brightest, kindest, most responsible and respectful children I’ve had the pleasure to meet.
I’m so proud to be mom to a military child, a little bit of sunshine I’m so lucky to have in my life! She has been so strong through this deployment, and probably supports me more than anyone else. She comforts me when I’m sad. Shares my fears. Celebrates our small victories right alongside me. She is really my hero!