Ahhhh, going back to Anchors & Planes basics today… a new step in the military life. One of my most popular blog series is about Basic Training. After BMT, we headed for Tech, first duty station, multiple deployments, training’s, and most recently ALS (Airman Leadership School.)
My husband tested out of cycle post-recent deployment, and found out he made Staff Sergeant (SSgt / E-5) just a few days after our son was born. It was such a surprise to him, but not to me; he is a natural born servant -hearted leader. So the next steps included several testings, CDC’s and ALS. Your loved one, no matter the branch, may have to take the school at another base. Luckily, we got to stay together this time! His class was on base, so it was only a five minute commune. His time in the class was different then his normal work schedule, so Anakin didn’t get to spend much time with him during the week, but the weekend were our jam (when he wasn’t doing homework.)
Your loved one may mention a few events that are taking place during the class: Class potluck/ BBQ, flag ceremony, and graduation. My husband was very casual in mentioning them, and putting no pressure on me to go to them, but was clear in saying “you’re invited” and “kids welcomed” or “I think kids can’t go.” The BBQ was super casual, and I brought Anakin hoping to meet other new moms… but there were only small handful of spouses. Which was great because everyone wanted to meet our baby, but a little intimidating when the ALS teachers decided to sit with us *tries to act civilized.*
When Anakin and I came back a couple weeks later for the flag ceremony, I was shocked to see only one other spouse there. The ALS teacher and base commander came over to chat and play with Anakin. One looked at Anakin saying, “You won’t remember today, but your daddy will never forget you being here for him.” Y’all, I wanted to cry. No matter how busy I am, how tired I am, how piss-y Anakin is – we will always do whatever it takes to be there for Davis. Sometimes showing support is just showing up.
So unlike my previous posts about supporting your loved one in the military, I am going to ask my husband, Davis, about how he felt the past month…
How did you feel supported by me?
Davis: I felt supported by you watching Anakin all day. Even when I came home, you watched him everyday, all day.
How did you not feel supported?
Davis: I didn’t feel not supported.
Looking back, what would make you not feel supported? Like if I did these things, it would make your time in ALS harder?
Davis: Hmm, complain about schedule. Complain about how much homework I had to do in the beginning. If you didn’t going to graduation without a good reason.
What would be “a good reason” to miss graduation?
Davis: Not having a baby sitter that you trusted, working – stuff like that.
If you could give anyone advice going into ALS, what would it be?
Davis: Take good notes and manage your time wisely.
I hope you enjoyed this post! ALS is short time that plays a big part in our loved one’s military career. Here is a vlog from the day of the flag ceremony and graduation; overall it just shows you it doesn’t matter how your day is going or how you’re dressed – sometimes you gotta just show up!
Davis, I am so thankful for you. For your hard work, for your fatherly heart, for your servant-hearted leadership. I love our beautiful life together, our family – and giving all the glory to God!
It has been so highly requested to share a bit of our home with the world. This was made with our west coast family in mind! We have had a handful of guests come and visit with us at this house, but we will be moving soon. I find that every space we have has it’s own personality; a warmth of it’s own that can not be covered with our chaos, but can be used collaboratively. I hope you enjoy this taste of our McClung Casa, and we will see ya soon at the next one! xoxo – angel
If you are stumbling upon this blog post, it is most likely because someone you love is coming home.
an instance of returning home.2. a chance to make a beer cake, or cute sign, shave your legs, and buy sexy lingerie
The Beer Cake.
36 bottled beer,
two platforms (mine was a salad bowl and Tupperware)
American flag duct-tape
topped with an American flag
(Pom poms for photographic effects)
Navy Blue pre-cut foam board
White marker (I used chalk board markers)
Table runner paper
*wrap around center of the door and tape*
Reverse side of table runner paper
Sense of humor
It’s not about the amount of time they have been gone,
the things that went wrong while they were gone,
or the right things they happened to miss.
What matters is they’re finally home.
Things You Should NEVER Say To A Military Wife…
“I could never do it.” Really? You could never do it? I’m sure if the one you loved was in uniform, you’d find a way to “do it.” Military spouses don’t have a special powers, we just are ordinary people who love extraordinarily awesome servicemen.
“Deployment will go by so fast.” The only person I trust saying this, is the one who’s husband just came back. Anyone else… no.
“At least he’s not deployed for (name longer time).” Please belittle my situation. I beg of you, it’s my favorite to know you think what I am going through is chump change. It doesn’t matter if it’s 6 months or a year, missing your spouse is awful no matter how long or “little” the deployment.
“You chose this life.” I didn’t choose this life. I chose to love and support my husband, and this life just happened to be apart of it. People choose what coffee to order, what to paint the wall, what goes on a playlist. They don’t choose Christmas alone watching Dear John, while drinking a bottle of Chardonnay and eating a large margarita pizza.
“Does your husband, like, shoot people?” He doesn’t, and if he did, I would still say he doesn’t. But you know what? Someone does. And they fight for your freedom to ask me that stupid question.
“Where is he exactly? Where is that? When does he leave? When does he get back?” I know that most people who ask these have great intentions, but seriously… if you’re supposed to know, you’d know. And if you do know, you should know that you’re not supposed to post it. Lose lips sink ships, y’all.
“I know just how you feel, my boyfriend has business trips all the time.” Cool story bro, tell it again.
“You guys should wait to have kids. You know, until your husband is out of the military.” I suppose we shouldn’t ever invest into anything, ever because of the military? No, life goes on. Even if your family is across the country or you’re stationed overseas, life is to lived! So go buy your first nice car, finish school, start your career, and/or start a family because life is beautiful.
… And Things That You Should.
“Please thank your husband for his service, and thank you for supporting him.” *hold back tears and feel proud* My pleasure M’am.
“Here’s a bottle of wine.” *hold back tears and feel proud* My pleasure M’am.