Military wives deserve grand salute

Published 12:00 am Thursday, October 9, 2008

She is a special breed of female, like no other on earth. She, without jealousy, envy or selfishness, shares her man with another woman. This woman is more powerful, demanding, possessive and overwhelming than any other.

She, without notice, will take her man away. She sometimes doesn’t say where she is taking him, when he will return or what he is to do. Yet with a heavy heart, tears in her eyes and a brave smile on her face, she lets her man walk out of the door without knowing if she will ever see him again.

This woman is one of our country’s unsung heroines. While her man is away protecting the country, she protects the home that — should he return — will be waiting for him.

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She fills many roles and fills them superbly. She becomes the counselor that comforts the children and answers their many questions about “Daddy” as best she can but always to their satisfaction. She is the chief cook, bottle washer, little league bus driver and the coach’s worst nightmare. She does an excellent job calling plays from the sidelines. She knows each child by name and directs how each should play.

She is the spiritual adviser in her home. She has a strong faith in God and shares this faith with her children. In trying times this faith keeps her strong and unafraid in the face of uncertainties. Her children can always look to her for strength and guidance. Though, at times her heart is heavy, her face offers the confident reassurance, “even this will pass. There is not cause for alarm; all is well.”

She can be ready to move on a moments notice. She is the only woman in the world that can pack three sets of clothes — one for play, one for school and one for dress up — for a family of eight, to last for a month. She can pack all of this in a shoe box. She knows that these moves have weight limits and that “hold baggage” is on the way.

Representing all military wives everywhere, her household must be well groomed and she finds the way to get it done. Home for her is wherever she finds herself as long as she stands with her man. She stands ready to say goodbye to her friends and anticipates meeting new ones. She has a large heart that carries all of them with her and still has room to gather more.

This woman is equally at home at the bazaars in Asia, the markets of Europe, the small shops of the Pacific Islands as she is in the malls and supermarkets of America. She becomes a wizard at bargaining and a currency expert. She has little difficulty communicating, though she doesn’t know the language. This wife develops a communication system that would rival the Navajo Whisperers. She leaves with her purchases knowing that she had made a friend and ally and on her next trip understanding will be greater. She realizes that she is the foreigner and makes every attempt to learn the language much to the delight of the natives of that country who offer every assistance.

Who is this fantastic woman? It doesn’t matter if her man is a soldier, sailor, marine or airman, she is the same everywhere. She has a great sense of neighbor, community, country, family and self. She is supportive, always a friend, confidant, willing to offer aid where ever it is needed. She is the military wife. My sisters everywhere, I salute you. I was at one time one of you.

Vivian Dishmon

Vidalia resident