I usually dance around the topic of children in this column, because I don’t have any.
I’ve never experienced deployment with a baby who refused to sleep at night, a pubescent pre-teen who really needed to talk to dad about some changes, or a rebellious teenager who thought rules were more like suggestions. I’ve never had to pull my kids out of school in the middle of the year, watch them say goodbye to all of their best friends, then move to the other side of the globe.
And I’ve absolutely never had to worry about picking up the kids from school, dropping them off at soccer and dance and karate, then rushing them all home for chores before dad comes home and goes “all drill sergeant” on us.
But I’ve seen all of this. Living in a military town such as Hinesville, and having a tendency of making friends who are 10 to 20 years older than me has made sure of it. Add to that the fact that I work with children and youth at my church, and it’s impossible not to see all of the trials that accompany raising a family the military way.
To be honest, it kind of scares me. I mean, these military spouses who spend their every moment running here and running there, carpooling and baking, they intimidate me a little bit. These are legitimate super moms and super dads I’m talking about. To ever assume that I could be like that, live like that, is laughable. I think a productive day consists of washing a load of laundry and doing my homework.
Sure, I’ve seen my fair share of mom-meltdowns since I arrived here, too. I know that not every parent is as strong as the next, and that every parent — no matter how strong — is prone to freak out a little bit every now and then, but raising children well, under what can sometimes be such adverse conditions, is awe inspiring, and most definitely worthy of note.