It's a Dog Tag Wife Life

The musings of a non-conventional, soon-to-be Army Wife

MilSpouse Friday Fill-in #22 November 19, 2010

Filed under: Army,MilSpouse — It's a Dog Tag Wife Life @ 8:46 am
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1. If you had to be shipwrecked on a deserted island, but all your human needs – such as food and water – were taken care of, what two items would you want to have with you?
Well, I’d want the hunny there, but I’m assuming he’d be there with me.  I’d have to say my journal, I’d want to track everything I’m doing and I’ve written everyday since I was 17 years old.  And probably my computer with internet access.  Gotta stay connected somehow!

2. If you were a salad, what kind of dressing would you have?
Hmm, there’s a blush wine vinagarette that I love.  But it can be too overwhelming for some.  It’s a little sweet, a little tart, and definitely can be the center of attention if you let it.

3. If you had to live on a ranch, what kind of animals would you raise/own?
I don’t know why, but I think it’d be fun to raise alpaca and ostriches.  Alpaca have such wonderful coats.  Also, I know they’d never let me, but I’ve always wanted to ride an ostrich. Plus, I hear they taste delicious 🙂

4. If your life was was portrayed as a movie, who would you choose to play you and your significant other?
This one is really tough.  I’d probably say Alyson Hannigan.  When I was a little younger, people always told me I reminded them of her.  Plus, she and I seem to have some of the mannerisms.  As far as the hunny, that’s a really tough one.  Maybe Jake Gyllenhaal. He looks a little bit like him, plus, he can be very serious, but playful when he wants.  That’s sort of how the hunny is.  Serious most of the time, but when no one else is around, very goofy.

5. What was the last thing you put a stamp on (envelope, duh, but what was in the envelope)?
Actually, it was thank you cards from our engagement party.  Well, I did part of them, I’ve been bugging the hunny to do the ones from his family.  I also am part of a program from my university where I’m an alumni where I write postcards to potential students telling them how great my experience is and encouraging them to visit the school.  It’s fun and makes me feel like I am still involved.

 

Please Don’t Pity Me, I’m Not a Victim November 6, 2010

Filed under: Army,Life,Marriage,MilSpouse,Politics — It's a Dog Tag Wife Life @ 8:37 am
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All you MilSpouses out there, I have a very serious question for you.  Do you ever feel like people look at you like you’re a victim of an abusive relationship when you tell someone that your husband is in the Military?

I do, and it’s very disheartening.  When I tell someone about the hunny being deployed, or the next deployment, or the last deployment, they give me this look like “Oh, I’m so sorry.  That’s terrible.”  Or they treat you different?  Or stop talking about their significant other, or their children, or the things they did as a family?

Recently, and I think it’s because we’re getting married soon, I’ve heard it more and more.  Instead of someone saying, “Oh, you’re so brave to do what you do.” or “Well, you can’t help who you fall in love with.” or “Wow, you must have a tough life.” I want someone to say “Wow, that’s awesome.   That’s great that you’re there to support him.”

I don’t like being pitied.  I CHOSE to say “Yes” when he proposed.  I CHOSE to marry him.  I even CHOSE to go out with him that first time, knowing full well what his job is.

  • Yes, it’s a hard life.
  • Yes, there are lots of sacrifices that he & I both have to make
  • Yes, I hate deployments
  • Yes, somedays I want to fight with his commanding officer (although, that wouldn’t be good for ANYONE)
  • Yes, I would prefer if he had a normal 9-5 job
  • Yes, I am unbelievably proud of what he does
  • Yes, I support him unconditionally because he does what he must to protect this country we call home
  • Yes, we don’t always agree because of political stuff
  • Yes, somedays I want to shred his ACUs, hide his dogtags, and say the cat ate them
  • Yes, I get frustrated when I have something planned but his work comes in the way
  • Yes, I’ve seriously thought about going 45 mph on post because I hate going 25 mph
  • Yes, I love him with all my heart and don’t want to be pitied because I do

I have a great man in my life and he treats me wonderfully.  I don’t want to be considered a “victim” because I fell in love with him.  I want people to think that it’s awesome that I stand beside him, no matter what, because it’s the right thing to do.  I don’t regret becoming a MilSpouse and never will.  I didn’t fall in love with army, I fell in love with him and I’m proud that I did.

 

Dog Military Names November 4, 2010

Filed under: Army,MilSpouse — It's a Dog Tag Wife Life @ 3:30 pm
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Ok out there in MilSpouse (or any other) world…I have a question for you.  Let’s say you were considering adopting a dog and wanted it to have a military/patriotic/American name.  What would you name it?

No real reason, but I was on PetFinder.com today (it’s a true weakness, I just love looking at the puppies and kittens) and saw dogs with the names like Chicken Little, Ruby Tuesday, Wood’s Edge, Piney Branch, Ribeye, John Henry and so on.  Ruby Tuesday?  Really?  They  have good sliders and all but…

So it made me think what I would name dogs if I ran a shelter.  I’d probably try to do something patriotic, but was having a hard time thinking of names besides the names of posts around the country.  Tindell, Eustis, Hale (for the Hale Koa), Benning, Ambush (for a particularly friendly animal), Bunker, Sally, and so on.  If you were to adopt an animal, and you wanted to give it a military/patriotic/etc name, what would you name it?

 

MilSpouse Friday Fill-In #14 September 24, 2010

Filed under: Army,MilSpouse — It's a Dog Tag Wife Life @ 8:05 am

Another rousing round of MFF from Wife of a Sailor!

This week’s questions are:

  1. What characteristic about yourself has either been strengthened or weakened due to your experience as a Military Spouse? (from The Albrecht Squad)
    I have learned to be much more patient and to not care as much about the little stuff.  I read a story about a woman who complained when her husband left a glass on the counter, she would get mad about how messy he was.  Then, she befriended a war widow.  The woman realized that the widow would kill to be able to clean up a glass after her husband.  That really put things in perspective for me.
  2. What is your favorite vacation spot and why? (from ‘Tis the Life of the Army Wife) I don’t really have one particular spot.  But I love love love Europe.  I’ve been to half a dozen countries and can’t wait to go back.  Italy and Switzerland are high on my list.
  3. If you could have any fast-food restaurant in the food court on base/post what would you pick? (from The Only Pink in a House of Blue) Um, well, we don’t really live near base.  But there was a drive through joint near my house that made the most amazing burgers and fries.  If we’re talking chain, then Sonic (I love me some cherry limeaids)
  4. Where did you go on your honeymoon?  (from Pennies from Heaven) Haven’t gone yet, just a few more months!!!
  5. If you could have any job in the world regardless of money, degree or experience, which job would you have and why? (from Proud to Be a Navy Family and The Calm Before The Storm) Um, I feel like I keep  bringing this up, but weather girl.  I love weather and would love to look at nimbus clouds and cold fronts all day long.
 

My first MilSpouse Friday Fill-In September 17, 2010

Filed under: Army — It's a Dog Tag Wife Life @ 7:21 am
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This is my first MilSpouse Friday Fill-In and it was pretty fun.  To learn more, check out Wife of a Sailor.

  1. How do you spend your deployment money, do you save, pay off bills or enjoy the extra money while it is there to buy the things you do not normally have? (from Troop Petrie)  We try to be really good about paying off bills, so we usually save it.  Not necessarily for retirement, but for a nice trip or a new car.
  2. If you could relive one occasion or moment, what would it be? (from Currently On Land)  Since it’s so new, probably when the hunny asked me to marry him.  I was so shocked/excited/happy that it was such a blur.  I completely remember it, just wish I could savor it again.
  3. What’s the worst job you ever had and if it was so bad why did you take it? (from Faith and Deploying)  Working for a pool company.  I was in college and a business student so I thought it’d be good to have office experience and got the job through a temp agency.  It was terrible, the owner was creepy and was a terrible business man.  Plus, I had to deal with unhappy clients and our service guys never wanted to do what I asked them to do.  He just wanted to do his own thing on his own time.  Definitely the way to NOT run a business.
  4. If you could play any character on TV, who would you be?  (from Many Waters)  This is a tough one.  Maybe Kensi from NCIS: LA.  I love how strong her character is, plus, I think it would be so fun to work with LL Cool J and Chris O’Donnell.
  5. If you could become the world’s expert in something, what would it be? (from Army of Two)  Meteorology.  I know that’s weird but I absolutely LOVE weather.  I would go back to school to study it but there’s way too much math involved.  I’m a pro at statistics, but calculus and I never did get along.
 

Happy Wife, Happy Life? September 2, 2010

Filed under: Army,Life — It's a Dog Tag Wife Life @ 1:28 am
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I apologize that my first real post is a rant, but there was something that has been on my mind the last few days.

When we are kids, we have an allowance.  We have to earn it by doing chores around the house.  We aren’t entitled to money, that’s just not how the world works.

Yet, I find people wanting more and more.  The other day I visited the US Army fan page on Facebook.  They had a post about what kind of services people would like to see for the families and spouses of soldiers.  I thought it would be interesting to see what other people were saying, especially as I’m about to enter this world.  I  consider myself relatively aware of the options that I have, but wanted to hear what others had to say.  To say the least, I was astonished at what people were saying.

Without listing everything, some of the requests I saw were free healthcare (with the ability to go to whatever Dr. you want, no matter where they are or what their cost), free vision, free dental, free childcare, free housing, an allowance for food, free college education (for the military member and their spouse) plus a host of other things that ranged from guaranteed employment for spouses and military members after service to more pay for the soldiers to brand new housing to shorter deployments so that the families don’t have to be apart so long.  As someone who sees both sides, I almost fell off my chair, from anger.

I have been a civilian my whole life.  I have worked for the last five years.  I have paid for my insurance.  I’ve paid for a visit to the eye doctor, because I didn’t have vision insurance.  And then I thought about what the hunny gets.  Not only does he have insurance for health, dental, and vision, he gets a BAH (basic allowance for housing) and a ton of other benefits that people in the civilian sector just don’t get.  Now, not everyone may get all of these benefits, but in no way do I feel like people are being deprived from all of these.  And if I chose, I could get it too.  Right now, I really like my insurance (as well as my doctor) and I don’t want to give it up, but I work hard so that I can earn the insurance that I want.

I understand what we as military families have to give up, but when I hear these women and men stating how they want everything handed to them on a silver platter, I’m saddened.  Our guys and gals risk everything so that we can continue to be free.  And their families have it good!  I was looking at my insurance today, for a family to be on my providers insurance, it would cost around $3400 a year!  They don’t have to pay that.

When I look at it, I know what I am marrying into.  It’s a life I have chosen.  I understand that there are deployments that will keep him away from me.  It’s part of the life.  And when I hear that they want money for food, I’m baffled.  Besides all of the benefits, these men and women are getting a salary.  Yes, you may need to budget, but for many, the commissary is right there, another savings!

On the flip side, I do feel there are somethings that they are entitled to.  Lots of local business give military discounts, I completely feel that they (not just their spouse) are entitled to those.   Why should I have to bring the hunny with me to buy a computer or screwdriver when the money comes from the same account.  Also, when I hear that a service person has fallen, I do expect airlines to go out of their way to help people get home and people who are on the flight to understand why they are asked to give up a seat.  I also feel they are entitled to private funeral services instead of letting unwanted people be allowed to yell things at the family (I will get to that another day).

And while I may have not been in this situation for as many years as these other women and men, I don’t feel like I’m completely out of the loop.  I do believe that our service men and women deserve the best.  It’s when their spouses and family feel as though they deserve every possible provision because they married that person, even if the service member would never use it on their own.  When the hunny told me everything that he has access to and what is free, I was baffled, I couldn’t even begin to comprehend how much it would cost in the civilian world.  I bet they would be surprised at what life is like on “the other side”.

Don’t get me wrong, I truly appreciate what these families do, it’s not easy, I’m in the middle of doing it.  It’s hard.  And yes, they do deserve benefits, and good care at affordable prices, and a myriad of other things to make life easier, especially during deployments.  And there is a certain amount of things they are entitled to.  Respect, easily accessible information, and help when they truly need it. It’s when they want the whole kit and kaboodle without having to do anything for it.

 

 
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