You’re In The Army Now…Sorta… My Life As An Army Wife (Part 2)

Thank God that year of deployment passed quickly and shortly after his return we were married. Our little family was complete. Getting married was the easy part. The hard part was getting acclimated to my new role as an Army Wife and mom. We were stationed at Ft. Stewart in Hinesville, GA home of the 3rd Infantry Division. We did not live on post so subsequently I didn’t know many other wives. That first year I was pretty much oblivious to the military life although I was a part of it.

We bought our first house, moved in, and I got to try my hand at decorating. It was an exciting time. Soon we were celebrating our one year anniversary and the very next day he went back to Iraq. Driving away from the post was heartbreaking. I remember calling my mom and sobbing “He just left.” She talked to me for a few minutes and calmed me down and I slowly drove home.
The girl child was 18 months old when he deployed for the 3rd time and every bit of a daddy’s girl. Initially I was able to answer her question of where’s daddy with daddy’s working, but soon even her young mind began to grasp that daddy had a very different job.

I kept myself busy by participating in activities with my Sorors and attending meetings in Statesboro once a month. Luckily my mom and in-laws were only two hours away so if things got too hectic they were only a short drive and we could go home as often as we liked. My mom and mother-in-law definitely helped get us through that 15 month separation.
Life went on while the Hubs was gone. I started a new job and graduate school. I tried my best to keep the girl child and myself busy. Unfortunately, while he was gone I lost my grandmother. We tried to request emergency leave for him through the Red Cross, but since she was my grandmother and not considered a close relation he was not allowed to come home to attend the funeral with me. My maternal grandmother passed away when I was 15 so losing my dad’s mother hit me hard. I wasn’t able to grieve long because I had a daughter to look after and a household to manage so like always life went on.

The hardest part of this deployment for me was people telling me how grateful they were for my husband’s service and how brave they thought I was! Me and brave in the same sentence. That was certainly not something I was used to be called. I didn’t feel brave either. More often than not I felt very afraid and helpless, but if I haven’t learned anything else from my husband I learned how to suck it up and move forward.

The hubs came home for 18 days of R&R and it was pure bliss. The girl and I were so happy to have those few weeks with him, but again it was torture seeing him go. The rest of his deployment passed quickly. We frequently called and chatted via the computer so it wasn’t as difficult this time around. Before I knew it he was coming home! At the end of May 2008 he returned.

Just when we thought that the Hubs coming home was the best thing happening to us we found out (36 days after his return) that we were expecting! Talk about a pleasant surprise! True to form though, things were anything but normal. While deployed he was promoted to E6 which meant he was now an NCO which brought forth more responsibilities and sometimes longer hours. If that wasn’t enough we were on orders to PCS in December so there was much to be done in a short amount of time!
Luckily we were only moving to Columbia, SC so it wasn’t terribly far but trying to coordinate a move while pregnant was definitely interesting to say the least!

Stay Tuned…….

I am extremely excited to announce on Saturday April 9th I will be posting a Q&A session with author and 21+ year military spouse Pamela McBride. Pamela is the author of The Mocha Manual to Military Life which is a must have for any military spouse, girlfriend, or new female service member. Pamela will be sharing her vast knowledge about navigating through the maze that is military life.

BIO:

Pamela McBride, the creator of The Work-Life Diva Blog (http://pamelamcbride.net/blog)  and author of Work It, Girl! (http://pamelamcbride.net/workitgirl.htm)

and The Mocha Manual to Military Life, (http://pamelamcbride.net/mochamanual.htm) is passionate about coaching people to use their talents, skills, and abilities to get what they want. With more than 20 years experience as a career and personal development expert and a military family life expert, this 21+ year military wife knows the difference between working and working it.  She provides timely advice and a fresh approach to every audience, every time, and on many topics, including: self-assessment, career planning, job search techniques, networking & interview coaching, resume & cover letter writing, and workplace effectiveness.

Pamela shares her insight and advice through personal coaching, nationwide guest speaking engagements, seminars, extensive freelance writing online and in print, and television and radio appearances. She has written extensively for Operation Homefront Online, Essence Magazine, The Black Collegian, Upscale, Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps Times and has several other advice columns. She is the owner of P.M. McBride Enterpises, LLC and the Military Spouse Job Search Expert at for Job-Hunt.org.

Although Pamela doesn’t consider herself a social media maven, she interacts with her readers, event participants, and clients, through Twitter (@PamelaMMcBride), on her Facebook Work It Girl Fan Page (http://www.facebook.com/workitgril) and her Working It Military Life Style Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/WorkingItMilitaryLifeStyle)  Pamela’s website is at www.pamelamcbride.net

No One Told Me it Would Be Easy….. My Life As An Army Wife (Part 1)

My grandfather served in World War II, my uncle in Vietnam, and my cousin in Operation Desert Storm. Despite having more than a few family members in the armed forces nothing prepared me for dating and marrying a soldier. Being in a relationship with a member of the military is unique and presents its own set of challenges in addition to those experienced by a “civilian” couple.

Just a few short weeks after my honey and I officially became a couple he was deployed for the first time to Iraq. He was there for 2 months before the war began. I spent every waking moment either worrying or writing him letters. At that time I was in school and I had difficulty concentrating because I was so focused on what he was doing. At this time phone calls and emails were few and far between. I carried my cell phone with me at all times I even slept with it so I wouldn’t miss him. I recall there was a period right after the war started that he didn’t call and my nerves were frazzled. I am normally looking for the positive side in every situation, but for some reason I was extremely tense and waiting to hear some sort of bad news. I prayed every night he would be okay, but I had no idea what to expect.

I didn’t know any other women dating a man in the military so there was no one who I could really talk to that understood my situation. It was difficult dealing with the questions from friends, especially when I had no answers. I was obsessed with watching CNN. I think that year I watched CNN more than I’ve ever watched it in my life. After a number of sleepless nights and waiting till the last minute to finish school work I gave myself a little pep talk that basically amounted to me telling myself to snap out of it. The only thing that kept me sane was writing those letters and sending care packages. Imagining his reaction to his gifts and hoping that he knew how much I loved him gave me so much hope.

I thought once he came home that would be the end of all of my anxiety; however I had no idea what dealing with a soldier after war would entail. Let’s just say the next year was an emotional rollercoaster. I had no idea what to say or do to help him and honestly because I wasn’t there I couldn’t begin to relate to his experience besides he didn’t share it with me either. By the time we got our footing and seemed to be on the right track I was 4 weeks pregnant and he was getting ready to deploy again!

The Choir Director: A Review

Carl Weber is back and so are the members of First Jamaica Ministries…..

via Kensingtonbooks.com

New York Times bestselling author Carl Weber takes readers back to church, where preaching isn’t always enough, nothing goes better with the Word than a song—and it’s time for some hard-earned lessons in love, brotherhood, and betrayal.Bishop T.K. Wilson has done all he can to make First Jamaica Ministries a success. But with his last choir director getting caught in a scandal, attendance and cash flow are down. To fill the pews and collection plates, Bishop is counting on a new choir director, the charismatic Aaron Mackie, to revive the church.

Aaron Mackie had been waiting his entire life for the opportunity to prove that he has what it takes to be a big-time choir director like Kirk Franklin. But while Aaron is more than up to the challenge, his ways around women, both past and present, could cost him more than his job.

Simone Wilcox is just one of the women who’s caught Aaron’s attention. She’s smart, beautiful and sexy, along with being a highly respected church trustee. She’s got her eye on the new choir director with the intention of having a lot more on him and she doesn’t plan on letting anyone get in her way.

First Lady Monique Wilson is far from being the typical first lady. She does and says what she wants, and doesn’t subscribe to church politics. Despite her shortcomings and a past rumored to include a long list of men, she’s willing to do just about anything to protect the Bishop.

The members of First Jamaica Ministries are also keeping the Bishop busy with choir in-fighting, romantic jealousies, and personal vendettas. You’d think the Bishop was being tested enough, but a final piece of the puzzle has yet to be revealed: Someone has been robbing the church blind. Someone whose connection to the Bishop is far too close for comfort. . .

I just finished Carl Weber’s The Choir Director and I keep asking myself how much drama is too much??? I am a Weber fan and I have been for several years. He never fails to deliver a tale that is intriguing and entertaining. His latest novel, The Choir Director, while not short on action, left me feeling a little conflicted when I finished. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but something felt off this time around. For the most part I enjoyed The Choir Director, it was a quick and easy read, but at times it was very predictable. The newest member of First Jamaica Ministries, Aaron Mackie, was an interesting addition to his usual cast of characters in the church series and I must admit I would like to see more of him and also to find out how his new relationship blossoms with a certain someone.

I figured out early on who the “villain” was in the story, although the reason behind his great deception seemed a tad improbable in my opinion, likewise about the choir director’s so-called secret. There were a few too many secrets in this story when I think about it.  I was a bit bothered at how far removed the Bishop was from all that was going on in his church and right under his nose I might add. Although the Bishop is a major character he seemed to only have a small role in this novel while everyone else were center stage even though the controversy was largely about him.

Overall I enjoyed The Choir Director and I look forward to catching up with the members of First Jamaica Ministries again soon.

Dear Eddie…

Its hard to believe that you’ve been gone for so long. I don’t think of you as often, but there are times that a random memory will pop out of no where and all I can do is smile. I often wish I could turn back time thinking that if I’d done things differently I could have saved you, but of course that’s impossible. There were so many things I wanted to ask you. We had so many things we were supposed to do, but I guess this life was just too much for you.

I wish I’d been a better friend to you. I wish you trusted me enough to share your pain. Your death was a heavy load for me. I felt like if only I visited you I could have changed the outcome of that weekend. It took me a long time to stop feeling like your death was my fault although I must admit there are some days I ask myself how life would have turned out for you if I’d just come to town.

I hope that you didn’t die without knowing how much you meant to me as a friend and that I loved you very much.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE Adele’s 21

 

 

I am obsessed with Adele’s new cd. It has been a while since I’ve loved over 50% of a cd, so this bears mentioning. The last female artist who got this much air time with me was Alicia Keys (As I Am) and Lauryn Hill (The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill).

I have 21 on my ipod and I burned a copy for my car as well. I listen to her so much even Kyleigh is getting in on it as well. She was getting ready for school a few days ago and singing He Won’t Go to herself. Her favorite track is Rumour Has It, which I must admit is very catchy. My absolute favorite song is Someone Like You. I don’t know what it is about it, but I HAVE to hear that at least 2 or 3 times.  My other faves are One & Only, Turning Tables, He Won’t Go, Rolling In The Deep, and Take it All. Now this is not to say I don’t like the other 3 songs because I do, but the songs I mentioned are in very heavy rotation. Simply put Adele’s voice is phenomenal and this cd is a must have!

 

What’s That I Smell? Why I Do Believe It’s a Steaming Pile Of BS!!!!

I should start this off by saying I am in no way a biblical scholar nor am I trying to comment on a person’s salvation/relationship with God, but someone just made a proposition that is as unbelievable as it is hard to ignore.

A man, J, who has recently started attending church again and is “trying to get his life right” is dating a like-minded individual.  J’s lady friend has stated that she does not want to have sex until she is married. J says he is trying to get right spiritually but he isn’t there yet so he decides that since he’s not there it is ok for him to text a woman and proposes that she has sex with him once a week because he’s not ready to give that up just yet.

So maybe it’s just me, because I know some times my moral compass tends to end up on high, but that just seems like all kinds of wrong.  Who does that???? I know we are supposed to go to God , confess our sins and ask for forgiveness, but who in the heck just says I am not only going to NOT do what I am supposed to do I am not even going to try to do the right thing?

I also think the person on the receiving end of the proposal should be a bit offended, but once again that is just me.  My house is definitely one of a see-through nature so I won’t be slinging any rocks any time soon, but this entire situation has me puzzle and honestly I am done trying to understand it because I know his logic and mine are quite different and oftentimes people’s motives are unclear even with an explanation.  So I said all of that to say on this one I call BULLSHIT. You can’t un-ring the bell but let’s slowly back away from it shall we?