Proudly Supporting all Military Families with a Special Needs Dependent
Today we would like to introduce our Military Spouse of the Day – Amanda Loeffler. She is a Navy Reserve spouse, currently stationed at MacDill AFB in Florida. And…..Amanda gave birth to a beautiful baby boy just two DAYS ago!
Amanda says her best experience with military life has been the people. “We’ve been fortunate enough to cross paths and have friendships with the most amazing people in the entire world. Our door is always open to them and theirs to us- wherever that door may be.” Amanda has overcome some challenges in the special needs world including getting a proper diagnosis for her daughter and then navigating the travel benefits, balancing her care when her younger brothers were very close in age. Amanda’s three children were very close in age and her active-duty spouse was gone over 300 days per year on the years he was ‘home’.
After Amanda’s daughter received a good diagnosis, she began a years-long therapy regimen of physical, occupational, and speech therapy, as well as therapeutic horseback riding therapy (hippotherapy). Amanda’s daughter is now nine years old and achieving the Principal’s List and Honor Roll! Funny, she says, when they were told by their first neurologist that their daughter would always be slower than her brothers and would struggle academically. Amanda says her daughter is making great strides in school because she learned to advocate for her and get the help she needed at an early age.
When we asked Amanda how she “de-stresses”, she said she loves to go get a good massage, spend time at the beach, and (on occasion) NOT cook. Amanda also loves learning so she tends to dig into subjects that she doesn’t know a lot about. She also spends tireless hours volunteering.
Amanda’s best advice for families that are new to the special needs in the military world is, “Don’t take no for an answer. Get to know your patient advocate, know what is available for your family. I ended up teaching my service member about the Tricare Travel benefit since he kept telling me that it didn’t exist. Also- plug in with other families who get where you are at in life. Otherwise it will be a lonely ride.”
The Military Special Needs Network honors and salutes Amanda Loeffler, our Military Spouse of the Day. We thank you for being such a wonderful military spouse and an amazing advocate.
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