My husband and I tied the knot almost four years ago. We grew up together, had the same friends, did the same things and even started college at the same university. Our relationship wasn’t always easy but we took each wave of emotion and each change in course one step at a time.
When he decided to quit college and enlist in the United States Coast Guard (USCG) I thought, ‘good for him.’ I have to admit I also thought, who would willingly sign up to go to basic training (aka boot camp)? my only “knowledge” of what occurred in a basic training type setting coming from the movies. After all, I never liked being yelled at by my own dad let alone a complete and intimidating stranger from the U.S. Military. Clearly my naïve self was only thinking about the short-term consequences and not realizing what an incredible commitment he was about to make. At any rate, it was his decision to enlist and I just assumed that his life was going to change. Change it did… and mine would, too.
He entered basic training in December 2007, and graduated in February 2008. That same year I graduated from Michigan State University and headed off into the world.
I quickly got a job first working in the commercial real estate industry but left two years later to take a job as a Federal Government Contractor. Shortly after I switched jobs I got engaged to my “Coastie.” When I said “Yes,” I not only said yes to one man, I said yes to the USCG. At that point in time I had no idea what life would be like married to the military.
From that day forward, I began learning. I have learned USCG terms and acronyms (there are sooo many, ugh!), I have learned to be flexible and to plan on not making plans, I have learned that dreams change and that’s okay, and the list goes on. Most importantly, I have learned that I’ll never stop learning. Every day is an adventure and being married to someone in the U.S. Military is not an easy task.
I hope the stories that I share with you along my journey will give insight to those readers who are not in the same boat as me and will build camaraderie with those who are.
I would like to make a special note to those families whose soldiers are overseas and to those who have lost loved ones- you are all brave, inspiring individuals and I in no way mean to compare your sacrifices with mine.