Have you found that one who you are ready to spend a couple of forevers with? I am blessed to say that I married my someone on July 23, 2005. Marriage surely takes work! But marrying into a military family requires a new role with a new level of unpredictable situations. A military spouse typically learns to adapt to changing schedules, create ways to make life work, while doing some complaining on the side. I would be remised if I told you, “I don’t complain.” Because I have complained a lot since being Married to The Navy, there has been plenty of tears shed because things didn’t go Continue reading “Summer Wedding. Summer Love: Romantic And Memorable Ways Of Celebrating A Wedding Anniversary”
Military life is something I am extremely passionate about. I have been “married” to the Navy for almost 14 years. I have shared with you in Resilience in Military Spouses and Resilience in Military Spouses..Part 2 about some of the sacrifices I have made as a military spouse. Some will never know what being married to the military (specifically active duty) means. There are definitely pros and cons, thrills and chills associated to military service. Therefore, it is always an honor to talk “military life.” For many that do not understand the military life, the military (basically) dictates our life (where we live, where the girls’ attend school, if/when we can take a vacation, etc). Truly, when Chief serves, the Continue reading “The Month Of The Military Child: An Interview With Our Five Girls”
Learning to deal with a separation and reunification has been consistent over this past year. Because I am away from my normal support system of family and friends, it is definitely a different feel. Undoubtedly, the girls’ and I have managed to accept the “what is” knowing that this is temporary (they are so strong!). But that does not mean that we weren’t filled with many emotions as we were given orders in hand earlier this year. We made the choice to stay back in Florida, while Chief departed. There had been several times when I questioned my journey. Read my previous blog, From Prison to Purpose as I discussed how I zone in on my purpose. But we both knew that we had a purpose that needed to be done on both ends (far beyond what we could ever imagine). So we took that leap of faith. And let me tell you, this has not been an easy journey at ALL (in all aspects)! Continue reading “Separation and Reunification: Military Life”
“The resiliency that is forced on military spouses, families, and service members is dynamic. It’s unscheduled, tough, learn as you go, unwritten rules and regulations which go unspoken amongst the ranks of all military spouses.”
My grand idea to deal with the scenario is to start my own blog website and volunteer at my church to be a Stephen Minister, again resiliency! BTW, mister was not too thrilled about me taking up another task because he feels as though I have too many responsibilities. This is a “snippet” of what non-traditional military families are comprised of. I certainly do not wish this entry to appear as a pity party, complaint department, or an alert to local government that military families need urgent care attention while spouses are deployed. I simply wish to honor the resiliency of my family and all military families verbally and perhaps enlighten some lovely readers on some common unknowns that may go forsaken if not spoken on. I say that to say this; I’ve enjoyed many moments throughout my husband’s military service and honestly wouldn’t change much about it. My husband puts forth great effort to illustrate his appreciation for my children and I. I actually revel in the fact I get to see what a non-traditional military family looks like from the inside and I hold my head high that I have stood beside a phenomenal man while seeing and experiencing some things not everyone is blessed to witness. I also appreciate the unnatural characteristic military service has inherently taught me for resiliency.
I have gone about my last 16 plus years since I met my husband, taking for granted the life lessons and resiliency training military service has forced upon me. I complained very little. I adapted and overcame, learned the military friendly jargon associated with spousal service, kissed my husband goodbye for an undetermined amount of time within days notice and can even tell military time within a second’s question! I can not recall how resilient I was at the beginning of this journey. But as we reach the end of his career, I can tell you the only moment I blink an eye of possible resentment is when my children, husband, another military family, or even myself experience a form of non-appreciation from someone who “just doesn’t know.” And are quick to minimize the resiliency it takes for military spouses to endure constant unpredictableness and sacrifice for the love of our service member and our country.
The resiliency that is forced on military spouses, families, and service members is dynamic. It’s unscheduled, tough, learn as you go, unwritten rules and regulations which go unspoken amongst the ranks of all military spouses. A respect that is not necessarily a code of passage, but understood and commonly acknowledged amongst the familiar ones. My children have been in public with our Chief Petty Officer on numerous occasions. There is rarely a lack of respect and appreciation displayed towards him. I admire my husband because in those situations, he commonly deflects that admiration and appreciation towards our girls and myself, simply stating “I couldn’t do it without them” again that’s resiliency of a military spouse and family. I am a resilient military spouse.
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I am writing my story…
Joyce Myers once said in her daily devotion, that the unfair things that happened to us throughout our life, will make us the person God wants lives to be.
After the twins read my first blog, they asked: “Mommy what is a nontraditional military family?” It dawned on me that we do not use the term often. I only use the term when individuals are curious to know the “why and how” about me. Let us discuss the “why and how.”
Then, we will chat about my term of a nontraditional military family.
- Why do you work?
- Why don’t you stay home to…
- How do you manage to…
- How are you feeling?
Researchers have noted military spouses have a difficult time seeking employment or completing college due to their spouses’ military career. The stress may be induced by PCS, family demands, single parenting during deployment, and certainly not limited to childcare issues. Personally, I would also agree that being a military spouse is exceptionally challenging for more reasons than the above. But being a “nontraditional military spouse” is even more challenging.
I know it is stereotypical, but I consider my military family “nontraditional”, much because of my upbringing. I can relate to military spouses/families, but relate more to my family and friends. In most cases, traditional military families surround themselves with like-minded and relatable other military families. In my case, because of my upbringing, the “relatable” piece of that scenario does not apply to my family and I. As a child, my upbringing focused on perseverance through adversity, hard work, tenacity and becoming capable to support myself (maybe, more on that topic in the future). Those values have stuck with me ever since. At 17, I became a teen mom; a single mom. Therefore, I know firsthand what it feels like trying to survive. When my husband deploys or forced to PCS without our girls and myself, life still goes on for the girls and I. I tough it out and SURVIVE!
I do not quit my full-time job, school, volunteering, etc…. At times, I play both roles and still manage to work towards my dreams. Is it challenging? Absolutely, but it is a personal choice and a sacrifice I am willing to make for me. I take great pride in not losing myself in my dreams because of my husband’s career, as research has shown.
We all are resilient, just in different ways. How do you define your resiliency?
Harrell, M. C., Lim, N., Castaneda, L. W. & Golinelli, D. (2004). Challenges to military spouse employment and education. Working around the military. Retrieved from https://www.rand.org/content/dam/rand/pubs/monographs/2004/RAND_MG196.pdf
Redmond, S. A., Wilcox, S. L., Campbell, S., Kim, A., Finney, K., Barr, K., & Hassan, A. M. (2015). A brief introduction to the military workplace culture. Work, 50(1), 9-20. doi: 10.3233/WOR-141987
Don’t forget to connect with me on my other social media platforms (to the left).
Welcome to my site, my name is Trenye. I am a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in Florida. For the past five years, I have worked with risky adolescents and their families. One of my ultimate goals is to facilitate positive social change for individuals and the community. I am married to the most attentive man in the world. We recently celebrated our 13th wedding anniversary in July. Together, he and I have five daughters. Our youngest is a set of twin girls. We are a non-traditional, proud and hardworking military family (more to come on that subject) that loves to live, love, and laugh. Below are a few pictures of my loves!
Although the military life has helped me to define my weakness and strengths, this site will cover far more than military. Sometimes we need a relatable individual with real-life experiences to believe and know “I can!” Therefore, I started this site specifically for individuals (young and old) who have a desire to be…anything they want despite life obstacles. A phenomenal individual (my husband ;o)) once told me, “when you can relate, you can connect.” Let’s connect!
Visiting my site you can expect to learn what a non-traditional life looks like for a military spouse/family, parenting, relationships, education/career, trauma-informed care strategies, self-love, resiliency, goal setting and much more!
Thank you for taking the time to visit my blog! Please leave a comment to let me know you visited and if you have specific topics for discussions. Stay encouraged!