Saying goodbye to friends you’ve made along the way is probably the hardest part when it comes to being a military spouse. It is the one thing no one can really prepare you for because the bonds you create in the military community are so different from the your everyday friendships. You will go through things with one another that most normal relationships will never be tested by.
When you move thousands of miles away from your family and friends your circle becomes a lot smaller. For example when I moved to Oahu to be with my husband I had no one I really knew. I had met a couple of his friends and another spouse before moving, but I wasn’t close enough to call them friends. As the months passed by though, I was lucky enough to build bonds that I won’t soon forget.
** This is one of my favorite pictures ever! This was the day Reyes and I went down to the Honolulu Court House and got married! Since we couldn’t afford to throw a grand wedding or pay to have our families fly to Hawaii (My mom, dad and step mom though were amazing and flew to Oahu to celebrate with us) it was tough, but thanks to Rey’s friends (who soon became my friends as well) we had an amazing day! The camaraderie between military brothers is something I think few civilians will ever understand and I am so thankful they got to be there!
My husband and I recently said goodbye with our good friend Lucas. He always had a smile on his face and knew how to make the most of any situation. Lucas was always fun to be around and was really the class clown of our friend group. I will forever be grateful to him for looking out for me since I moved to Hawaii. When my husband and I would fight he would always remind us that we were good for one another and how much love we had to give.
**Lucas is on the far left, helping Rey and I lay beach blankets down because the wind was crazy that day!
When I had my wisdom teeth out this spring Lucas came to our house and made a big batch of his AMAZING mashed potatoes because I couldn’t eat solid foods. For Christmas him and his girlfriend bought me a really nice waffle maker because months before I had made the comment about how I missed my dad, and how he used to make me the yummiest waffles growing up. Isn’t that just the sweetest thing ever!
So even though the goodbyes are hard, and I miss the people that have moved away or that I have moved away from, I am thankful for the chance it has given me to meet others. If it wasn’t for the military I never would have met the friends we have now. I have learned so much from the people I have met in my journey as milso, not just about life but about myself as well.
** This was the night we said goodbye to Lucas when all got together for one last hurrah at the local sports pub. Good friends and good food!
The one piece of advice I can offer to new military spouses is to take every opportunity this life offers you, and don’t be afraid to reach out. You have a whole community who is going through the same things as you, so take advantage of it. Join Facebook groups, get involved in your spouses network, invite others for a cup of coffee to connect. Most importantly though, take a lot of pictures because before you know it this part of your life will be done and the pictures are what will bring a smile to your face.
XOXO Taylor Ma