Military life before kids is a challenging adventure. You set out to spend your life with the person you love. Together, you tackle deployments, TDYs, PCSing, and all manner of military life challenges. You grow as a team, and the distance and waiting are worth it because you love each other. Together, you can conquer the world!
And then you have kids.
You didn’t realize it was possible, but somehow this adventure becomes even more challenging. And a thousand times more beautiful. Because when you have military kids, you watch their hearts break because mommy or daddy has to leave. You dry their tears during the long days of waiting for homecomings. You see disappointment sink in when they say goodbye to their friends. You help them search for their place in each new community you come to. You help them as they struggle to understand why military life is the way it is.
But you also get to watch them triumph and grow and overcome challenges that bring adults to their knees. You see them take every new obstacle in stride. You get to be inspired by their resilience and the pride they have in their parents’ jobs.
You think you’re raising them, and then one day you wake up and realize that it’s them teaching you. Showing you what it is to love. What it is to find joy in all circumstances. What it is to make the most of tough situations. What it is to thrive, despite it all. They show you why it’s all worth it.
For every heart ache, there’s a victory. For every goodbye, there’s a homecoming sweeter than anything on earth. For every friend left behind, there’s a new one to make and a reunion to look forward to. For every move, there’s something new and exciting to explore. For every day spent apart, there’s a child sending up a prayer for daddy or mama. And at the end of the day, you find a child wiser and braver and more wonderful than ever.
Military kids are more than children. They’re world-traveling, farewell-bearing, new-school-thriving, deployment-waiting, mama-and-daddy-loving, little heroes.