The adventures of an Air Force spouse

A downside to military life

As I sit down to write this, another horrific attack was perpetrated against the American people. My heart, thoughts and prayers go out to the people in Boston for Patriots’ Day and the Boston Marathon. The senselessness of this attack and others of its kind, never ceases to amaze me.

Tony B playing
Tony B playing

Now on to what I really want to talk about and that is a downside to this wonderful military life we lead. Mrs. Staff Sergeant called this weekend wanting advice because Tony B threw up the night before. As we skyped and I watched him laughing and playing and being his usual adorable self, I concluded that maybe he’d just had a little stomach upset. I advised her to feed him some toast and see what happened. Which she did. Later in the morning, he apparently gave his breakfast back to her. By the time the Good Chaplain skyped¬†with her later in the day, he said Tony B looked terrible. He was listless and just lying around. Now I felt horrible. I gave her the wrong advice and now the baby was sicker than he was before.

Of course, it wasn’t my fault he was sick, but I sure felt like it was. But what was even worse, was I couldn’t be there to hug him and cuddle him and help Mrs. Staff Sergeant out. Once when Mrs. Staff Sergeant and Illinois Girl were babies, the Good Chaplain and I caught a stomach bug. It was so bad, neither of us could get out of bed to feed the girls. The Good Chaplain made it downstairs before collapsing on the couch, while I could barely get out of bed. We were lucky this was before military time. We could call in the cavalry in the form of the Good Chaplain’s parents, who came to the rescue and took care of the babies until we could get back on our feet.

Recently the same thing happened to Staff Sergeant and Mrs. Staff Sergeant. They had a stomach bug, but I am in Hawaii and they are in England. So even if I could have gone, they would be better before I could get there. Again I felt terrible because I couldn’t do the grandma thing and help out with my little man. That’s the part I don’t like about military life — being so far from extended family. But once again, the military family stepped in (shout out to my girl, Megan!) and took care of Tony B until his mom and dad were on their feet again.

We all sacrifice something when our loved ones join the military. Grandparents miss out on seeing their grandchildren, children miss out on a special relationship with grandparents and cousins, but we all gain something greater by becoming part of a larger family — the military family.

When has your military family stepped up to help you out? Comment below.

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