I would love to write the perfect post to describe what it is like for children of the military, but I’ve never been one. My children didn’t have Military parents either.
But my granddaughters do.
From the beginning of their lives I’ve watched them learn things other children won’t ever experience or understand. They know to stop playing and stand quietly while taps is played each evening.
Some of them experience one or both parents gone for long stretches at a time. Sometimes not even being able to speak with them over the phone.
They know how to make new friends, quickly and they also know they will lose their friends just as quickly. Living in a neighborhood of other Military children, they see friends come and go every few months.
I was visiting my son and his family a few months ago, and walked my oldest granddaughter to her school on base. As we waited for the bell to ring, and the doors to open, I looked around and witnessed parents dropping off their children.
Some were in uniform and a few were wiping tears from their child’s eyes as they said goodbyes. I had to wonder if those were goodbyes that would be for much longer than the day.
There is a resilience and strength among these kids and a feeling of unity too. On some level they know they are different from other kids…even the young ones.
I’m extremely proud of my Military son and my daughter in law who’s even stronger than she knows. And I’m also proud of my granddaughters for getting on a school bus full of strangers with a smile and immediately looking for new friends.
It takes a special unit to make this life choice work. And I applaud all of the Military Children out there. May their days be filled with friendly smiles…even through so much change and uncertainty.