I have been thinking long and hard about how to post this, so all will understand and perhaps take a moment to think about how we treat others in our military community. With our departure from Canada quickly approaching, I think the time is right for me to vent….
Yes, fair readers vent!! This is my blog, and I have finally allowed myself the freedom, to feel comfortable enough to say what I think is important….a quick glance at our life….not a facebook, blah, blah look, but what our 13 years have been like. I don’t want this to come across as a pity party, for it is not…..I have made my decisions regarding our life, and am very comfortable (most days) with those decisions. This is a mere glance at my frustration.
There seems to be this preconceived notion of what being an Officer’s wife, or an Officer is all about……I am here, to best describe from my perspective, what my protected, entitled and privileged lifestyle is really all about. I will apologize in advance, if I seem curt or angry, but when I am hurt, when my family is hurt, or anyone I care for is hurt I react with anger. I am working on this, but still haven’t come far enough in my development as a person to be able to “turn the other cheek” yet. See, still more learning!
I am going to start this off with some basic facts…..
1. I fell in love with my husband, not his job, plain and simple
2. The Canadian Forces drives me as crazy as anyone else out there on any given day. If you think I am a Forces cheerleader, you don’t know me at all.
3. If you think that befriending me will in any way, shape or form help forward your spouses career, you are dead wrong……I don’t involve myself in my dh’s job, heck, I can’t even tell you with any sort of accuracy what he actually does!
4. Serving in the Forces or being a spouse of a Forces member is a tough job/life……it is not for the weak of heart or spirit. Fact!!!
5. My husband’s most important rank is “daddy”
6. The most annoying question ever asked is “what does your spouse do?”….who cares????? He wears green, and that should be good enough.
7. There will be families out there, to whom, the military is everything, and rank means everything….that is not us……if you don’t know that, once again, you don’t know me.
8. Any post seen on social media regarding my dh, is not focused at anyone but our family. This is how we share what is happening in our lives.
9. Officer’s are not millionaires…….yep, that’s a fact!!!
10. There is still this archaic mentally carried about by some serving members regarding rank etc….I think it was passed on by someone’s great grand-father or something, but in our house it doesn’t fly……and if anyone brings it into our house, you will quickly be shown the front door.
11. My dh genuinely cares about his soldiers…end of!
12. Nasty women take great pleasure in attacking an Officer’s spouse……are they crazy, perhaps…..I don’t know, but I can’t see of any other reason that would explain this strange phenomena.
13. I am an individual, I am not defined by my dh’s career choice, and if you choose to view me in this manner, shame of you, because I think, I am a pretty great person!!!
There is some basic facts about our life….nothing news worthy, or perhaps even interesting, but a starting point…..so I will move on to my “entitled” existence.
This is what I am entitled to notice the big empty space…….good, I got your attention!!! That is exactly what I, as opposed to any other spouse am entitled to, nothing! We are all entitled housing if required….heck, your house may be bigger than mine depending on the amount of children in the family!! We are entitled to insurance, a pay cheque, the basics that everyone receives, that is it, nothing more. Last time I visited Walmart, there was no reserved parking sign for me, people don’t pump my gas, I do my own laundry, clean my own house, clean cuts and scrapes, no fast entry to the er for me…..in short, look, you wouldn’t know me from any other harried mother scurrying down the aisles at Sobey’s, except perhaps the fact that I will probably be the one in the really tacky neon jammy bottoms. If there is an Officer’s manual regarding special entitlements, I am not priivy to it, nor would I want to be…..I am quite capable of walking the 100 meters across the parking lot, thank you!
I will now move onto the privileged section of my life…..now here is where is gets really interesting, perhaps after reading what my “privileges” are, maybe, just maybe, people will be more content and thankful for what they have.
1. I have the privilege of moving every couple of years…..anyone who has moved more than once, knows the ultimate privilege this is!
2. Everytime we move, I get to dry the tears of my children night after night for about 4 months…..this is something I look forward to anticipation always….as any mother knows, it is the best feeling in the world to see your child in pain, and know that other than words and reassuring hugs, there is nothing you can do about it…….We have to move….end of discussion.
3. I have the privilege of starting from scratch every posting. Trying to make new friends, weed out the one’s who cause you pain……about the time you move again, you almost have it figured out….almost!
4. There is that pain when you move about leaving those that have touched you, that you have called friend. For me, when I refer to someone as a friend, I have given part of myself to that person….it makes for many tearful nights for mummy too!
5. I have the privilege, upon arrival in a new location, of people already hating me, because of my dh’s job. That folks is a wonderful feeling….new boss comes in, must be cause for the rumor mill and nastiness to ensue!
6. I have the privilege of not having had any family even remotely close to us for the past 8 years.
7. I have the privilege of people judging me, before they know me…..or even after they know me, because of lack of courage in their own convictions, to still snub me or speak badly about me or attack me….just for fun and games.
8. My children have the privilege of being avoided by other children (who have been told be their insightful parents) not to befriend the Officer’s children.
9. I have the privilege of sending my dh off to fight the same wars as everyone else’s…..If I hear “he’s safe, he’s an Officer” one more time I might go finally lose it….don’t believe me…..ask!
10. Following above mentioned wars…..I also have the privilege of my dh returning, just a bit different than when he left……no one is immune from this.
11. I have the privilege of listening to speak about my husband in terms that are less than flattering. Remember, he is my husband, and I love him dearly……how would you feel if what your spouse?
12. I have the privilege of people not doing business with me, because I am the Officer’s wife….she doesn’t need the money right? Go back to the facts portion of this segment if you forgot, or the great grandfathers words of wisdom not to associate with the “others”….times have changed my friend…..I was just doing what at one point I enjoyed.
13. I have the privilege of not knowing exactly who to trust (and on of my downfalls is that I tend to be an extremely trusting person)…..I am not quite sure of who is talking to me because they want to, or because of what “information” they think they can get from me…..it usually turns out to be none, because I don’t know anything regarding the “green.” I don’t speak in acronyms, I chastise my husband if he talks to me like a soldier….you kind of get the idea!
14. I have the privilege of consistently hearing, “Your dh isn’t bad for an Officer,” now this may be said tongue in cheek, but after you have heard it over 50 times……trust me, it really loses its gufaw factor!!
15. I have the privilege of being berated by other Officer’s wives for calling some behaviours elitist, and down right wrong…never tell me how to dress, I am an adult, I know right from wrong, and so do my friends!
Gosh, there are so many more, but I don’t want to rant on and on adnauseaum.
I will sum this up, by saying…..we are a community, and as a community we should be pulling together, not by holding some archaic, out of date set of “rules”, that some feel are cast in stone. The world has changed and so should attitudes. One should never judge another by their job, more importantly by their spouses job….there are far too many more important things in life. I will say, that my dh has worked hard his entire career, and neither myself nor he would every apologize for the job he has. I will also say that NEVER should my children be used, in the way they have……to those who have done that, you have sunk to a low that is unimaginable.
We are all individuals trying to make it through this crazy maze called life. I believe if we tried to understand others a bit better, and focused less on the “unimportant” things, the world would be a much better place. Let’s look at people as people, not a uniform, not a job, not a rank…..let’s show the human kindness we all strive for, and if you can’t do that, at least keep quiet and don’t add to the many stressors many families have to deal with.
I love my family, I love my life, I love my friends…..when I love, I love with every fibre of my being…….and that is a fact, one I will not be ashamed of, nor apologize for…it has nothing to do with “green” or trying to impress, it is me, totally imperfect, flawed, scarred me…..an Officer’s wife.