Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Relax, Military Kids Will Be Okay

"Do you ever worry?" she asked nervously. "That all this moving around and change will mess them up?" She nodded her chin towards our kids who were playing at the park.

"No," I answered quickly. "Not even a little bit."

She gave me a curious look. "How do you know?"

"I was a military kid. And I am thankful for all the changes."

True, it wasn't always easy. I hated leaving friends behind. Before email and social media existed, it was tough staying in touch. Oh sure, letters would be exchanged fervently during the first few months, but then they'd taper off. It was okay though, because by then I had made new friends.

I appreciate everything I went through because it made me who I am. And I know other military kids will feel the same. Here is why.








1. They'll be interesting conversationists. When people ask where they are from, they can list off a bunch of different places. For example, when I'm asked where I'm from, I say, "Well, all over. I've lived in New Jersey, Italy, Germany, California, Belgium, Massachussetts, England, Nebraska, Wyoming, Oklahoma, and Texas." It would be boring to just give off one place.



2. They've learned to adapt. When it's time to leave, they eventually figure out how to make new friends. They learn their new neighborhood. They navigate their new school. This comes in handy when they start a new job because during the interview they can truly say, "Yes, I can adapt" when asked how they deal with changes.



3. They know how to say goodbye. Oh sure, farewells are always difficult, but they can get easier with time. I always hated leaving people behind, but after I had done it multiple times I knew I'd be okay in the end.



4. They experience other cultures. If they live overseas, they can see firsthand how other people live. I remember enjoying German food and German markets. I can even count to ten in German because in PE, it was required to do so. I also learned the streets are MUCH smaller in Europe--as are the homes. In England I learned what a Spotted Dick was and even though Yorkshire Pudding frightened me, I did love Bangers and Mash.


5. They can say that their family member is a hero. Not many can say this. But when your parent is in the military, they are serving their country. Some even risk their lives for their country so you and I can enjoy our freedom.




So yes. Military kids will be okay. They'll be stronger for all they've gone through.





They'll be proud to be military kids.

53 comments:

  1. My stepson was a military kid for the first 11 years of his life and these things are all very true. He's 19 now and one of the best men I know.

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  2. Yes!!!!!! I am so excited for E to experience this life. I truly believe that it is going to make her stronger.

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  3. I salute you and your kids and you Hero!

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  4. I know plenty of military kids and I tip my hat off to their flexibility, utter optimism, adaptability and realizing there is more to life than just the self from an early age. Cheers to you for feeling no shame in raising your kids this way!

    xx Heather | stormywheather.com

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  5. Yes all of this!! The kids will be okay. I grew up as a military kid and I've gotten so used to saying goodbye over the years. Thank you so much for this post!

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  6. I never once thought that they wouldnt be ok. They are more wordly and experienced then lots of other kids. Lucky in what they get to see!

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  7. My brothers kids were military kids. They had so many wonderful adventures and experiences.

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  9. Yes! And Natalie and Tommy are great kids. They will be awesome and so cultured from the travel!!

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  10. Totally! They'll definitely have interesting stories to tell when they're older... And maybe they'll carry out moving around when they are able to decide what to do with their lives!

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  11. Your children will totally be okay, Amber, and they will be proud, even more so when they read this. The military presence isn't that big here in Malaysia. Thanks for broadening my awareness on what military families go through and experience.

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  12. Adapting quickly is definitely a huge advantage nowadays. It's not really a world where young generation will be able to enjoy safe, cushiony job position for next 50 years. Professional growth will require them to move from place to place. Thank you for visiting me on www.igaberry.com Best Wishes and a Happy New Year, Iga x

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  13. Kids are resilient and can roll with the punches more than we give them credit for.

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  14. I've written about this extensively on my own blog. As an Army Brat who has/ is raising an Airman and a Sailor, I never worried. My kids, and others I know can hold a conversation with anyone. Their experiences are so varied, their friendships span continents and their futures are limited only by their imaginations.

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  15. I think your babies are much stronger and easy to adopt in new environments ala cameleons! They are so lucky to have you, you the same to them :)

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  16. The travelling, the languages, the adventure - I think it's a fabulous journey for you all to take and no doubt you will all benefit enormously. Your children will, ironically, be some of the most grounded children around who accepting of the worLd, and the people around them.

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  17. I totally agree with you!! They will grow into well rounded adults with a ton of life experiences. It is a better education than most get!

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  18. I think sometimes people get so caught up in what they see as drawbacks that they can forget what a blessing military service can be - not only for those who benefit from it on a fundamental basis, but for those who live in everyday and can be proud of the sacrifices they make to protect our country. Many thanks - from my family to yours - not only for your husband's service, but for your family's willingness to share him.

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  19. I know so many military children who actually loved it as they reflect back as adults.

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  20. I agree! My mom is always grateful for moving around so much as a kid, although I think she gets a little jealous that I've known people like my fiancé since kindergarten! It's a catch 22 I guess!

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  21. Oh wow - I can't imagine they WON'T be ok. Kids are resilient. They just need love and shelter, which you have in droves.
    They'll be more wordly!

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  22. This was such a lovely blog post to read. A nice perspective on a world I don't know much about it. I would imagine it would be tough but I like your view on it and I think you're right in so many ways. Thanks for sharing your thoughts & experience with us.

    ~Crissy
    www.whimsicalfawn.com

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  23. It's sounds like your kids have a loving, stable household. This will be the deciding factor in their success. A good foundation is so important.

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  24. My son is in the military. It is good to know that when he has kids that things will be ok

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  25. Having lived in my childhood home from the age of 1 until I left for college, I feel like it'd be difficult to move around so much. At the same time, I feel like people just adapt. No matter what you're faced with. You come out of it and there are advantages either way :)

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  26. I moved around a lot when I was in school since my dad used to be posted at different places. I loved it actually.

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  27. Its so true they are strong for the rest of us. Thabk you guys for serving our country as a family.

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  28. Military kids had a lot of benefits and that includes college scholarship, and that was totally awesome. As they grow up they will soon pick up a military skill which is the adaptability and to recognize the importance of sacrificial service.

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  29. My parents weren't in the military but as my dad moved up the corporate latter we had to move to a new place. Safe to say that I came out just fine ;-) if anything I think it builds character and teaches you how to deal with people since you are constantly meeting new ones

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  30. One of my besties married a military man, and I am so glad that I read this article.

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  31. You are so right! All these changes will shape them n a good way.

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  32. Interesting article, just moved to the US and i am learning a lot of stuff from blogs thank you for the post

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  33. Such a great perspective! Too often people focus on the negatives when there are so many positives too!

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  34. It can't be an easy life. My mother was a military kid and they lived all sorts of places. As a result (?) she withdrew and doesn't form relationships very well, even with her own family. Such a shame.

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    Replies
    1. That is a shame. That wasn't my experience at all, nor my kids, thank goodness.

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  35. Military Kids, that is so sweet! My eyes welled up a little bit (I think something was in my eye) proud of her too!

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  36. I think you are exactly right here. While some aspects of being a military kid are difficult, in the long run the experiences will teach them so much and they will grow up being a well rounded, adaptable adult.

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  37. That is so sweet! I have a friend who is military kid and she thought that is not easy.

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  38. I don't know anyone who is in military but I know they're heros of the country. Your children must be so proud to have their hero dad. I think military kids are so cool.

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  39. As an Air Force brat I completely agree!!! I know when I was younger I was one of the few that could say I had dual citizen ship with two countries from being born over seas!

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  40. I have a bunch of cousins that are military kids and they all turned out fine probably because of the resons you mentioned. My aunt tried to make their house look the same inside with the same decoration so wherever they moved their house looked like their home.

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  41. I know someone who was a military kid. The things they saw and experienced some good some bad, but they had so many learning experiences that they wouldn't have gotten if they didn't move around so much.

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  42. I have friends who have military kids and to me they seem so resilient and kids adjust amazingly

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  43. I'm so thankful for the military individuals who serve our country. I know it's a sacrifice...and their families' sacrifice too. My military mom friends have some of the most well-minded kids I've ever met...and they're great with chores! :)

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  44. You know I can not even imagine what it must be like but then again as you've listed above they will be stronger for it.
    Made me chuckle on spotted dick, i remember first time I saw it on a menu I blushed red even though I am black lol

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  45. Your kids are gaining loads of skills that will serve them throughout their lives. Great post.

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  46. I went to school with loads of kids in this situation. They always seemed so much more mature than me. I think it was because they had experienced so much more than I had.

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  47. This is awesome! I think it is an interesting way for the children to learn culture.


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  49. These are some great points. I like it's great for kids to have a little variety in their life. I wish I had more culture in my younger years.

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  50. This is lovely. I think it's nice that you addressed this because a lot of people are concerned. It's really not about having a parent away, it's all about how they're raised. I think you're a great mom and having experience with what it's like, I'm sure your kids will be just fine.

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  51. This is absolutely sounds great, I think it's good for the kids to learn and to serve other country

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  52. i agree that they will totally be OK. I actually think it's cool that they are living an unconventional and awesome way. also able to see the world.

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Thanks for the comment!

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