I See You….I Am You

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To the mom watching her kids play in the front yard, I see you.

To the mom wrestling with her children in line at the Commissary, I see you.

To the new spouse in line at Starbucks who looks as lost as you likely feel, I see you.

To every spouse who has heard the words, " I am deploying," I see you.

To those of you who chase these tiny monsters that we have created, I see you.

I see you because I am you! I am the spouse trying to convince my children not to scream outside as I know the neighbor works the night shift. I am the spouse pleading with my children to behave while in line at the Commissary. I am the spouse who every year moves to a new location and feels lost. I am also the spouse who says, "I'll see you soon" at the most inconvenient times. I am the spouse waiting for bedtime because I know the house will be quiet for a few minutes.

Chaos is our life

I cannot think of a better way to explain it. We spend many of our days wondering if we are moving or when our spouse is leaving. We wear more hats than most people ever should, and more often than not, no one knows what we are actually struggling with. Through the chaos, we meet many new friends. We learn to adjust to new environments, and we spend countless months alone. We drink way too much coffee (if there is such a thing). We spend too much time trying to catch up on laundry, and just when we think we have it all figured out, life throws us new curve balls. We learn more often than not, we are alone even with many around us.

You are not alone, even when you feel like it.

Even when the chaos seems to be too much. You see me sitting here on the bench at the playground. I look exhausted and I cannot seem to get my children to listen to me. I am sure you have been in my shoes before. I am grateful that you sat down beside me and struck up a conversation. You are likely the one adult I have had a conversation with in days. You have probably watched me chase the kids through the stores, or you have heard me constantly remind them to be quieter outside in the hopes that they will not wake the neighbors. You might have watched me leave the airport in tears, and it is likely one of my video calls from my husband has been heard at the store.

You understand me, and I understand you.

Regardless of our spouse’s branch, we know the struggles other military spouses go through. We are a strongly connected family of brave spouses working together to support the bravest men and women in this world. I am you and you are me! Together our chaos makes us stronger

Carlie James Petrovics is a freelance writer originally from Georgetown, Delaware. (1).png