Chances are if you are reading this, you have at least one friend who is a military spouse, or on the flip side of that, maybe you are that friend to someone else.
We are a rare breed: a group of women and men that may not have signed our own lives over to the service, but we certainly have sacrificed some freedoms to be a part of this community.
I have been a military spouse for over 12 years now, and I just have to come right out and say it…my fellow military spouse friends are just simply the best.
Of course, I have other friendships but outside of a few absolute gems, most of my friends are fellow spouses. I have seen these friendships bloom over my years as an Air Force wife. One thing I know for certain is that they fill a void for me, one that has yet to be filled the same way by any other person.
I could be totally alone with my thinking, but if I had to guess, I’m sure a few of you would agree. There is just something different about military friendships! There is a foundational understanding and bond that is formed super early on that in my experience is unmatched.
I remember when we got our first assignment. One of the initial spouses I met at that base fed me some cheesy line about how the military community is like a family. I think I may have just done the old smile and nod. But now, 12 years later, I can totally see why she would say that.
The military IS like a family, and sometimes they are your ONLY family.
I have relied on my fellow spouses so much since embracing this journey, and they continue to remain irreplaceable to me. These are friendships that form out of circumstance yet immediately feel like some sort of landing space in the midst of an uprooting lifestyle.
Military spouses have taught me so much about friendship and more:
They have taught me that it is not the amount of time that makes a connection deep, it is more about the willingness to go there.
That friendships can be born out of necessity and still bloom into something so much more than just that.
They have shown me what it looks like to be carried during the hard times. Those meal trains, phone calls, or gift baskets that appear on your doorstep as if some sort of magic has just taken place.
They have challenged me to want to be a better friend myself. I have seen firsthand how a mom’s night in or playdate can completely lift the spirits of a woman whose husband is TDY or deployed (and I have been this mom on more than one occasion!).
We know what it’s like to make friends with the best, and have to say goodbye every 4 years or so. I feel like that is a huge reason why we tend to just jump right into the deep end and say “Hey, let’s swim together!”
My tribe of military spouse friends are some of the strongest women I know. They have helped me through really lonely moments, and even from afar have set great examples of what true friendship means. Some may have faded over time, but even if only for their own little seasons, they all have held a huge piece of my heart.
Here’s to you, fellow spouse friends! I trust that you all know who you are.
You are one of the best gifts this lifestyle has given me, and I am so incredibly grateful to have you all in my life, both here and spread out across the states!