Being in Love With a U.S. Army Soldier
It isn't as hard as you think.
A lot of people think it is hard to date someone in the military, but truth be told, it's not. Yeah, they are closed off and don't talk about emotions, like other people. But what people don't know is that, when these military men and women go to basic, they aren't allowed to show emotion. They don't talk about feelings, they don't cry because it shows "weakness." Being in love with someone in the military isn't as hard as people think. Yes, there are obstacles to jump through. Staying home while they go to basic for 3 months, not being able to hear their voice or see their face. Waiting weeks on end for a letter, its hard, but it's only three months. AIT gets better because they do have their phones after they pass a test. So you do get to see them and call them, but the schedules are different, trying to get a 5 minute call in before she goes to work and he has his next class, waiting for that 5 minute call in the morning, even though it is 3:30 in the morning where she is.
The hardest part isn't the distance or the amount of time away from each other, from my perspective, it's watching the war movies and thinking "oh my God, that could happen to him, he could be in that situation." Before I started dating my soldier, I enjoyed watching war movies, it amazed me, and now when I watch them, I cry. I keep thinking, "the love of my life is willing to risk his life for our freedom, what if this happen to him, what if he comes back a completely different person?" But I can't keep those thoughts out of my head. That's that hardest part.
The other hard part is when the love of your life comes to you and says, "I want to go active after this contract." How am I supposed to respond to that? "My job doesn't deal with combat." But I have seen war movies where they are doing the same job my boyfriend would be doing, the same MOS, and they still had to go out and do combat, all because they needed more soldiers. Just because he wont be doing combat and he would be fixing stuff doesn't mean that they wont get shot at. My mind races every time I hear him talking about going airborne or going active. I mean, who wants to hear their boyfriend saying he wants to go active?
The hard part isn't the person they come back as after basic, or not being able to talk about emotions or feelings. or the one weekend a month they have to be on duty, or the two weeks they go to annual training every year. It's dealing with them wanting to go active and putting their life on the line. Yeah, I will admit that it will be hard to be away from him from six months to a year. But distance isn't anything to me. The distance made us closer and let me tell you, there is nothing more exciting than going to the airport to pick up your soldier after being away from him for so long.
I realize a lot of adults couldn't even handle this, and we just got out of high school. If you really love someone, nothing is going to keep you apart. I came across this quote that said, "A military girlfriend is just a wife in waiting, no one would go through this if they weren't in it for the long haul." And I really think that is true. There are trials and tribulations, but it is all worth it in the end.
People who date someone or who are married to someone in the military are strong. We serve too, no we don't get a uniform or orders, we don't leave our friends and families behind for months at a time, we don't learn all the skills. But we stay behind and put on a brave face and pray to God that they will be okay. Our soldiers take half our hearts with them. We have to act like everything is okay in front of friends and family and children, we have to act like we aren't waiting to get home so we can lock the doors, turn off the lights, and just cry. I pray every day that things will go back to how they were and that when he leaves again, he wont come back a completely different person. It's hard having all these thoughts race through your mind.
When my boyfriend was at basic he got really sick, and when I heard about it, I just kept thinking "I hope he is okay, I hope he doesn't have to stay longer." And what's really sad is I am just realizing how selfish I am being when I tell him that I don't want him to go active or airborne because that is what he really wants to do. Being in love with a soldier has its obstacles but it is also one of the best things ever. They are loyal and protective and never put you second. They always think about you first. I don't think I can find anyone else who treats me as well as my Soldier does.
Being in a relationship with someone in the military has changed my perspective a lot. I cherish the moments we spend together now, more than I ever did. I cherish that 5 minute phone call at 3:30 AM, even if it meant losing sleep. I cherish my boyfriend so much more because I don't know what the future holds for us, whether he goes active or stays with me. But I can't keep thinking about the future so much, because what matters is he is here with me right now.