It always amazes me the strength Military families have. The soldiers, the wives, the children, and the parents are put through a trust test of Faith each time their loved one goes overseas and are always searching for ways to send comfort. The best comfort one can give is unconditional, unfaltering love. But how can you show it to someone the love you feel inside when you cannot be with them? When searching for the answer I came across an awesome blog written by a Military wife called, Joe, My Gosh! and the recent post was entitled "Strengthen Your Military Marriage in 5 Minutes (or less) a day". Well, viola! The exact advice I am looking for! Thank you Joe, for the insider information. I am sure all Military wives and husbands out there appreciate it!
Here are seven tips to help you stay connected with your spouse during deployment.
- Travel loans through United Military Travel. What better way to stay connected than to actually be together! United Military Travel (UMT) offers active duty, career retired Military and government personnel the chance to finance travel. Whether it is the family traveling to the soldier or the soldier traveling home, you can travel now and pay later through UMT. For example, your spouse gets an extended leave and decides he/she wants their family to meet them in Europe for a long weekend or a week. That is totally possibly when you finance your airfare, hotel, and even your car rentals. You could even finance DisneyLand Paris for the whole family if you wanted to. My life motto is, "live life through experiences, not things".
- Care packages! One of the best things in life is to receive fun items in the mail that are not bills. A letter, a card, photos, care packages - they all make the heart smile. So first, make a list of all their favorite things....go crazy with it! Then, start narrowing it down to what is practical....and legal to send in the mail :) Now, grab an old shoe box or whatever and start packing it (don't forget to include a love letter from you)! Stay tuned for a complete posts on how to create the BEST care package for deployed soldiers.
- Pray together. Whether you believe in prayer or a higher being - having a silent moment together where you recognize what your heart truly wants and needs can make all the difference in the world. A great way to this is via Skype. A couple times a week, commit to a time, and communicate face to face with each other. Even if you do not have access to a computer, Skype still is great via telephones too.
- Communicate. Normalcy and routine are two things that can make anyone feel better. So each day, try to send an email containing your, "we just got home from work talk." Meaning, tell each other about your day exactly how you would if they were home and just getting off work. No detail is too small. Communicate and ALWAYS BE HONEST!
- Know what makes your spouse feel loved. According to the book, The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman, people communicate love in five different ways and have a preference to a particular one. Some people prefer words of affirmation, acts of service, gifts, quality time, and physical touch. Which one do you relate to and do you know what your spouse responses best to? Even from afar, you can use these techniques to show love during deployment.
- 40 Days of Deployment Dare. This is a devotional to help Militaries families stay connected during deployment. If you want to grow closer and deal with the challenges of marriage at the same time, try using these comments each time you communicate with each other. They act as a gateway for conversation and open up communicate to anything that may need to be talked about. Check it out here!
- Always show gratitude and keep laughter alive. These two are my favorites of Joe's ideas because happiness comes from laughter. My husband always tell me, "smile baby, you look better that way" and sure enough, a smile spreads across my face and I feel better. I also try to always let him know how thankful I am for everything he does for us and I believe that is what gets him through some of his hardest days. Try it out and I promise you will see a difference!