Don’t forget about THEM.
There are ALWAYS people in need, but needs and giving will forever be magnified during the Holiday Season. As military spouses, we don’t like to appear “needy” (at least not the spouses that I know). We ARE strong, confident and capable. However; when the kids are in bed, and the lights are down, the Christmas tree is shining and we curl up with a favorite book and a cup of hot chocolate… it’s hard not to FEEL all that we are missing.
Missing our Soldier that’s on a deployment.
Missing our Soldier or Friend that never made their way back home to us from war.
Missing our Family that we can’t afford to visit.
Missing our Friends from our last duty station.
Missing Traditions that we left when we moved to the new town.
There’s a lot missing for us. And while some are permanent, and some are temporary that doesn’t make the temporary any less important. When we let ourselves think about what is not there, only a few minutes lapse before we SWITCH that thought train to all that we DO have. We’re forever positive thinkers, grateful and hopeful.
But as a friend, don’t forget that these moments happen.
Don’t miss an opportunity to show an Act of Caring.
This is the time of year that many people open their hearts and minds and tend to “DO” for others. (Wouldn’t it be great if we gave year round as much as we do at Christmas?). Huge Acts of Kindness are plentiful. But small acts of caring can be make just as big of an impact.
The best thing you can do for your friend that is a military spouse is just let them know, that even though you don’t live the life they do, you care. And you know that he or she has these moments. When you’re baking this holiday season, bake a batch for the military family in your neighborhood that has a Deployed Soldier. Send an ornament to a Gold Star Family in your community. Show your appreciation to the Wounded Warrior in a tangible way, like sending a card of thanks.
None of these things can replace what is missing. But it can give us a jolt to remind us that there is still an amazing village of people that we can lean on, be grateful for. We can’t replace the thing that’s missing or the SOMEONE who we wish were here, but your small act of kindness is actually a HUGE ACT IN CARING. To the military spouse an Act of Caring is a confirmation that new things can be good. New friendships, new traditions, new additions to our extended “family” give us hope renewed.
How incredible to know that such a small act can be the one thing that turned around the Holiday season for military family? Too often we think that making a difference isn’t possible, but trust me when I tell you that these things make a difference to those who sacrifice to protect this country. To the deployed soldier, knowing that their family is taken care of physically and emotionally is a gift in itself. Your Act of Caring has a far reach….not just to the spouse down the street… but to her kids that get to see their Mom’s smile actually reach her eyes (because they’ve noticed that the smile is there.but it’s not the same as when Dad is home). It reaches the soldier who gets to (finally) hear his wife’s voice. He can hear excitement when she tells him about the unexpected letter from you.
There is no act of caring that is too small.
No act of caring that won’t make an impact.
No act of caring that is not important.
So…. who what military family will you show that you care through ACTIONS this holiday season?