Sunday, May 15, 2016

Finding Your Friends at Every Duty Station

   A couple of weeks ago I wrote a blog post "Don't Forget About Your Friends Back Home," and got a pretty big response from it. 

     I went hiking and out to dinner this past weekend with some friends I have met while we have been out in Colorado. The fact that I have found a solid group while I am out here is something I did not think was possible. 

   I went from living in the same town for 20 years to college and back home again. Any friend I had growing up I had known for a long time and it seemed easy to make my friends in college. 

   Another thing was I believed the stereotypes of military spouses that I saw on the internet. 

   I'm embarrassed to admit that I thought what random people posted on the internet was true. Are there people I've met that fit those certain stereotypes? YES. I have also had the opportunity to meet some incredible spouses who make military life worthwhile.

O most recent hike.
Get Involved
   When I first moved out to our current duty station I did not make any effort to volunteer, join the FRG etc. I relied on Brandon to introduce me to other people's wives. I did meet some great people that way but I still felt lonely. 
   When I started showing up to unit events, volunteering on post, and just getting involved, I was able to meet so many great friends.

Learn From Each Other
  All of my friends who are military spouses are experiencing the military a little bit differently. I love that I am able to talk to someone who "gets it" and that I am also able to provide advice when needed. I also have learned more about the different parts of the country where all my friends are from.

Keep In Touch
   I am admittedly not an all star when it comes to keeping in touch. Eventually, you all will move to your spouse's next duty station or leave military life altogether. While its sad to leave the friends you've made in military life, just think of all the places you get to visit now! 

You Don't Need To Be Friends With Everyone
   You will meet some great friends, maybe not right away but it will happen. For example, I see so many spouses complain that they show up to FRG meetings and don't make any friends. FRG meetings are not meant to be speed dating for friends, although you can meet some great friends there. The best relationships are ones that aren't forced. 

  The opportunities to make lifelong friends through your journey with military life are endless. The military community is a tiny one in comparison to the rest of the country, but it is a cross section of the United States with all different people from all different backgrounds.

  Military life can be complicated, scary, unpredictable, amazing, and pretty much ever emotion alive. It is worthwhile to have some friends to share and relate in this journey.




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