Proudly Supporting all Military Families with a Special Needs Dependent
To show our appreciation for our National Guard, we asked Guard wife and blogger extraordinaire, Amanda from Confessions From HouseholdSix to blog about life as a Guard family.
This week is the National Guard’s birthday. It’s parents must have been drinking during St. Patrick’s Day just like mine. It’s a good week for birthdays. The Pennsylvania National Guard celebrated a big one this year too – 265 years.
A lot of people have the misconception that the Guard is one weekend a month, two weeks a year. Those days came crashing down with the World Trade Center towers on September 11, 2001.
Now, many guardsmen ( and women!) spend much more time in their “part time” positions. I can tell you from personal experience that my soldier would often go four months or more without a day off between his civilian job and the Guard. Would he trade it? No. My husband loves what he does.
My husband has served in many different capacities in the Army over his tenure so far – ROTC cadet, reservist, active duty, National Guard, and now AGR. He’ll tell you the Guard is his favorite. Why? Because when the shit hits the proverbial fan, he’s out there helping his fellow neighbors. He feels like he’s making an actual difference in this great big world.
Beyond storm and disaster duty, our soldiers also still get deployed. That’s different for Guard families too. We’re often out there on our own hundreds of miles or more from the nearest military installation. We rely on each other, and the support of our communities to make it through.
I’m sure you’ve also been hearing your favorite politician talking about how the military needs to do more with less. The defense budget is bloated. It is. But I can tell you that the bloat is not in the family programs or the Guard budget. We’ve always done more with less to make sure soldiers have the training they need. If nothing else, they’re more economical during deployments because units like my husband’s (at the time) have the skills from their civilian jobs to bring to the table. When they got to Iraq, they installed their own air conditioning and their network because soldiers in the unit had the training from their civilian jobs. They didn’t have to wait around for Big Army to send them someone to get such things set up.
Being a Guard family really is a different culture than the other branches, but don’t be confused. We’re just as proud and loyal as any other military family.
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