Did you miss my article over at Military1?
From constantly peeling old PCS stickers off furniture to finding ear plugs in the dryer, there are just some things only a military spouse will understand.
1. You have a shotgun wedding because your servicemember just received orders to deploy and wants to set you up in base housing.
2. Your kids begin to call out ‘daddy’ any time they see a man in uniform at the commissary.
3. You always find ear plugs in the dryer after doing your service member’s laundry.
4. You begin to memorize and understand acronyms like PCS, TDY, and POA.
5. You see your military spouse friends on base more than you see your husband, thanks to workups and long hours.
6. You never fully unpack after the first move because you know you’ll be moving again shortly.
7. You forget your own social security number because you use your husband’s so regularly.
8. You still peel PCS stickers off furniture from previous moves.
9. You no longer point in the direction you’re referring to. Instead you use the ‘knife hand’ approach.
10. You carry your cell phone around 24/7 when your service member is deployed, just in case he calls. If you can’t sleep, you check your email in the middle of the night.
11. You roll your eyes when your non-military friends complain their spouse is gone for a week-long business trip.
12. Your kids move to a new duty station and are excited about meeting up with friends from two duty stations ago.
13. You have a whole room dedicated to military gear and uniforms.
14. You start saying ‘stand-by’ and ‘roger’ in everyday conversations and text messages.
15. You never make vacation plans unless the command has given an official leave block window.
16. Every time you move, a friend who lives in your neighborhood can introduce you to another friend who lives at your next duty station.
17. You have a lot of Facebook friends simply because you’ve met so many amazing people at various duty stations.
18. You end up scheduling the movers and managing the pack out and move in process alone.
19. Your resume has huge gaps filled with volunteer work instead of jobs.
20. Your car is registered in one state, you have a driver’s license from another, and you actually live in a third state.
21. All the pictures in your house are crooked from demolitions and artillery explosions and you don’t bother straightening them anymore.
22. You begin to get antsy and feel the need to move after two years at a duty station.
23. You’re addicted to Amazon.com because it’s easier shipping things to your remote duty station than driving to find a store that might carry what you’re looking for.
24. Your kids were all born in different states or overseas.
25. You love homecomings, and seeing banners always melts your heart, no matter if it is yours, a friend’s, or a stranger’s.
Kristine Schellhaas is the founder of USMC Life and author of the award-winning book 15 Years of War.