Today we cross a milestone for our family. September 15 is Seth's official end date of his army career. I must say that we both have so many feelings associated with this milestone. For him, it is a change in a choosen career path, it is letting go of military terminology and prestige, it is not wearing a uniform to work, and it is a loss of the military comradery. This is a decision that took hours, days and months of soul searching and prayer. It was a decision that was not made lightly. Seth is confident that he is where he wants to be. The practical parting happened about a month ago when he went on 'terminal leave' and took a new job. Still, this date marks a letting go for him. It is really hard to put into words what it is for me.
I have had so many feelings this last month that I didn't expect. I didn't realize I would feel as if a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. I didn't expect to feel a different joy about being together as a family. I have shared with Seth that it almost made me feel guilty to feel so happy to be out. I didn't ever long to be out of the Army life. Oh, I can't say that I didn't ever wish I wasn't going through the Army trials (deployments, especially) but I always felt confident about my role as an Army wife. I loved supporting him and being in a position to support the military. Army (or all military) spouses are in a special position. They have a special strength. I am thankful that I got to grow in that role. Military spouses have to be strong. I know some have been taken to their breaking point and have asked their spouses to get out. That was not my feeling. All I truly wanted or want, is for my husband to be happy and to be where he believes he should be. Some days I still find it unbelieveable that he choose a new career. But, I do find an amazement at the joy and comfort I feel knowing that he will not deploy and he is not training for war. I will always honor and support the military. For now, I am thankful that we are living (as a friend of mine in TN put it) a "normal life."
I thankful for my husband's Army career and I am so proud. I am proud of Seth for what he was able to do in the Army. He was an amazing officer. He led his soldiers by serving them. He treated his missions with utmost importance and he did everything with a high regard for the people he was working with. In addition, he never made my feelings seem unimportant. He was able to work at his job with all his heart and giving love and support to his family. As an Army officer, he made me so proud. I am proud to be his wife.
Seth took the time to chronicle some of the highlights of our Army life on his blog. If you can, hope on over to Popping Smoke to read about the last 10 years.