I listened to Spousebuzz radio last night regarding FRG’s. It was an interesting program and it got me thinking…here are some of my rambling thoughts...
When Stuntman was deployed, I barely knew any of the “lingo” or “Armyspeak”. Whatever I’ve learned since, came from Stuntman, or from online sources.
I never thought of the Army helping me through this deployment. I just figured that Stuntman would be gone, and I would need to make do on my own.
After Stuntman left for training I did receive a newsletter from the FRG. I contacted the leader (who has since changed) and asked if there was anything I should know or that I could do. That was the one and only time I spoke with my FRG leader.
There have been two get-togethers in the last year, and I attended one. I did attend a meeting that was for a different FRG , just to see if I was missing anything… I wasn’t.
There have been discussions about pre-deployment briefings on Spousebuzz… I had no idea that there should have been something like this. At the farewell ceremony, there was a table in the corner with a few Tricare flyers on it… does that count?
In the last year, I’ve had to figure out a new health plan and new paychecks with weird terminology that I’ve never seen before. Reading the comments in Spousebuzz, I know I’m not the only one. Thank God for Spousebuzz and other milspouse blogs out there.
I don’t remember the name of my FRG leader, the name of the rear detachment guy, or the name of my husband’s company commander. I’m sure the names are on one of the 3 flyers that I have received in the last year… but I don’t really care... they obviously don’t care to know me. God forbid, if anything was to happen to Stuntman, or there was an emergency at home, I doubt I would be able to reach these people. I have called two of them, to RSVP for the last get-together, and never reached anyone. I did receive a return email… almost 2 months later.
I’ve only found out about casualties directly from Stuntman, or the defenselink website . Once again, if Stuntman was more seriously injured, I have no idea what would happen.
Since Stuntman is ARNG, I know my situation is drastically different than active duty spouses. I’m not in a new location; I don’t live on post, or even near one. I’m older, and have been self-sufficient in the past… but not for as long a duration. I don’t need an FRG for day-to-day issues. I mainly wanted to be in touch with one, and attend meetings so my children would know other children that have deployed fathers.
We’re over 2/3 of the way through this deployment… and I’ve made it this far.
It’s just as if Stuntman is on an extended business trip … except business trips don’t last as long, and when he’s on a business trip, I don’t worry about an official-looking car appearing in my driveway.
I’ve mentioned before that I don’t feel as if I’m part of the military. My husband is, but I’m just here… day after day.. living my civilian life. I am so proud of what he is doing, and of his choice to join. The only difference between my neighbors and me is that I have a military ID in my wallet… an ID that I only take out in conjunction with my Tricare card. Should I feel like a part of something bigger? maybe.