Tag Archives: families

How to prepare children for major life changes

I never knew how different military children were until  our granddaughters lived with us during their mom’s deployment.

When I was a kid my parents moved very often. They just liked to move and experience new surroundings. When I graduated from high school I had been to 13 schools. People would ask me” Is your dad in the military?” I never really thought about it until my granddaughters came to live with us.

My parents would tell me we were going to move about 2 weeks before the move. It was hard saying good bye to my friends and teachers. I hated being the “new girl” in school. But I made an effort and made friends quickly. I can say today I don’t have a problem going to events where I do not know anyone.

My daughter prepares her to her children for months in advance. She take about the possibilities of future moves. She would tell them if you were to go live with grandma and grandpa you will be able to go to my elementary school. You would have your own bedroom and live in the house I grew up in. And instead of only seeing your grandparents once a year on vacation you can live with them. So when  our daughter actually deployed  our granddaughters we prepared. They had thought about living with us.

The only problem with this preparation is the children can worry about the separation from their parent. They can become anxious and worry about when that time comes.

My granddaughters did adjust very quickly to living with us. Knew we had rules to follow and the these new rules would be different from their mother’s. they accepted they had to follow new rules and never argued about what our rules were compared to their home.

With our daughter’s future departure just around the corner my granddaughter’s household rules will change. My granddaughter’s are now preparing for those changes and I am too. Thinking about how I can help them when I plan on staying with them once a month.

Looking back at our last deployment  I do think it’s better to prepare a child for separation, like my daughter is doing. It maybe hard knowing my daughter will be leaving ,but adjusting to our new environment I think will be a lot easier.

Soliders returning home.Today’s families still face up coming deployments

Recently our media  has been addressing our returning soldiers.  Yes the returning  combat soldiers are coming home.

Talking with my friends they are under the impression that our deployments will be over, yes that is true for our combat soldiers .

The US has presence all over the world and those military assigned to overseas bases  have a rotation time. When their time is up  this means someone has to fill those jobs. In order to do that we have to deploy our military.

I wish our media would explain to the public a little better of  what our military does do. I spoke to a Army Reserve MP CID Yellow Ribbon Event for  families facing an upcoming deployment.

War is ending, but military deployments will not end for our military.

What does it mean to be invited to the White House Community Leaders briefing?

When I was notified that I had been selected to attend the White House Community Leaders briefing , my first thought was- “My wish is coming true!”

I have been wishing  to share with our government how we can better help our military families experiencing  deployments and returning home for sometime . I faced so many challenges at that time when my daughter was deployed and I knew other families must have faced the same issues, also. 

White House administration for the first time in history has opened up their doors. They have selected  community leaders to share  how they are improving their communities and in hopes of bridging government services to better serve our people.  I was selected because of my work in  educating our military families on deployment and reintegration.  And will be attending this briefing with the White House administration on August 12. It is an all day event.

I was informed by the White House Administration  prior to my visit, to select one of the four  departments to speak to -Small Business, Environment, Health Care /Human Services or Dept. of Education.  I selected the Department of Education.  I think informing the school administration on how to better understand and help the children of military families.  More than half of our military families are living in communities and  do not live on  military base.

I began to think back about the time when our  granddaughters came to  live with us during our daughter’s deployment. And the challenges I faced- changing my entire lifestyle, dealing with concerns for our daughter’s safety, the lack of communication, being a parent again,enrolling children in a new school, trying to find after school care( which I was unsuccessful due to limited space and being mid year), I had no support due to our location, and experienced many mixed emotions or being a parent, again.

Military families need help with many issues they face during deployment. So many of our families are on our own, trying to do the best job they can while their loved one is away.

I thought , wouldn’t it have been nice if I would have known where to get help. Have all the resources at my fingertips when my daughter was deployed? I would have loved to have had an after school care, homework helpers, babysitters -I could afford. Having other deployed children for my granddaughters to connect to, knowing what deployment was like. And maybe, a network of  other families in the same situation.

So now, here is my chance and I can’t wait to speak!

Want to share your story or do you have an idea on how to help other military families you would like to me share with the White House? I would love to hear from you.

Send me your comments.