The Key to Find Balance As A Military Spouse by Judy Davis – The Direction Diva

by Judy Davis - The Direction Diva on July 29, 2014

Key to Life Balance 300x300 stress relief military life life balance happiness Chaos, stress, unexpected change. These are some of the biggest obstacles we face when trying to find balance in our life as a military spouse.

I can’t tell you how many times my best thought out plans have been ruined because of an unexpected change in my soldiers day. It’s the little things that really send my life into free fall. The cold dinner, missed date night or the sad faces when another promised bed time story was delayed. It was like someone was playing a sick joke every time I tried to find balance to this rollercoaster life.

So what is the key that helps me bring things back into some type of equilibrium? Quiet.

The key to finding balance in this crazy unpredictable military life came when I began to allow as much quiet into my world as possible. It has become vitally important for my sanity to build “quiet time” into my life on a regular basis. But how can you do that when Military life is anything but quiet?

You schedule time to do nothing a.k.a. “Do Nothing” time!

Put 10 minutes of “Do Nothing” into your schedule 3 times a week and watch your life come into balance (P.S. You can thank me later!).

For those of you who are saying “I do that”…Do Nothing Time means nothing! No distractions, no TV, no music, no people, NO devices…I said NOTHING!

It’s about creating space for yourself to truly relax. I do it whenever I can. I have been known to sit in my car before I go to the commissary or wait a bit longer than necessary in a lobby after a doctor’s appointment just to be by myself with only my thoughts. Heck I’ve even set my alarm just to sit in my favorite chair with a cup of coffee before the house awakens just to fit some quiet into my life.

Let me repeat because it is SOOO important!

Schedule some “Do Nothing” Time! It is the best thing you can do to bring balance back into your life.

Now if you have little ones, you are probably laughing at me right now, rolling your eyes, and thinking “bless her heart; Judy has finally lost her mind”. But trust me; it is possible to find quiet (even silence) in a life filled with pandemonium, no matter how hard your children (or the military) may be working against you.

You just have to schedule it!

Not ready to go cold turkey and step away from life for even 10 minutes? Here’s a compromise: When life gets crazy turn off the tv, turn down the music even speak in softer tones. The quiet that comes from turning it down a notch brings with it the balance we crave.

Honestly, the old “Calgon, take me away” commercials had it right. The crazier things get, the more you need to get away and find peace and quiet. Because in the quiet you find your true power and strength. It’s the quiet that helps you find balance and get sane. When things are quiet, you get to become you again. Quiet allows us to feel, to relax, and to renew our spirit. It lets our minds work to deal with the stress and disorder.

So tell me….How do you get quiet?

~~~

Known by military spouses around the world as The Direction Diva, Judy Davis is a motivational speaker, lifestyle blogger, advocate and author of Right Side Up: Finding Your Way When Military Life Turns You Upside Down. A military spouse herself, Judy blogs, writes and speaks with a passion for changing the hearts of the military community and shares T.I.P.s (Tools, Information, and Perspective) to help military families become stronger. To connect with Judy, read her blog or obtain information about speaking topics, seminars & programs visit: http://thedirectiondiva.com (Inspiring Military Spouses)  or  http://livingthrucrisis.com (Helping Military Families Find Hope)

{ 0 comments }

images 300x118 PCS orders military life PCS, Permanent Change of Station, Moving, Military Move, Orders. Call it what you want. Heck I’ve even heard it called the “P-Word”.  But until this very moment I never really understood how a simple piece of paper could create feelings of sadness, depression and anxiety.

Just to be clear NO this isn’t my first PCS and typically I’m not one to flip out over a last-minute change in plans. But like so many things in  military life until you experience something during YOUR perfect storm you can’t even begin to understand what another spouse is going through. In my past new orders were always met with excitement. I looked forward to our new adventures, exploring  new duty stations and experiencing the local culture. I didn’t even mind the PCS process, in fact it allowed me to get rid of the clutter in my house.

But this time it was different.

I LOVE our assignment at Ft. Carson. There isn’t one thing about Colorado, this post or this town that is lacking for me. In fact 8 months ago (after he finished Master Gunner School) my soldier broke the news that completing the course “locked” him into his unit for at least 2 more years. I was ecstatic! We talked about retiring here in the future and even set a date to begin looking for houses.

I accepted more invitations from civilian friends. I volunteered for year-long positions. Like I said I even began looking for possible houses to buy. I understood that we would eventually get orders but that was a long way off and for the first time in my military experience I felt like I could finally let my guard down and put some roots in place because eventually we would  return and retire here.

So when the P-word came out of my husbands mouth unexpectedly and too soon I was devastated. This time WAS different.

As I write and rewrite this piece I’m faced with the fact that with this set of orders I’m finding myself going through the grieving process. Don’t believe me? See for yourself:

  1. Denial & Isolation: For days after my soldier dropped the P-bomb I was paralyzed. I couldn’t tell anyone.  I found myself thinking (out loud) “This can’t happen”, “There must be a mistake”, “They said you were here for at least 2 more years”. “I can’t move right now”.  It felt like some sick kind of joke that I was the brunt of. For a couple of days I refused to believe that we had come down on orders. So I did what any other sane spouse would do I holed up in my house with a glass of Merlot and some chocolate and cursed the Army and all the idiots who mess with our lives. And then I was ANGRY!
  2. Anger: I have a long fuse, but once ignited I become the kind of angry that is ugly. I mumble under my breath, curl my lip and am short with those around me. How DARE they mess with my world right now. For me this  happens to be the worst timing for a PCS EVER. My book is currently at the printer and launching in just over a month. I have speaking events lined up throughout the fall (all from Ft Carson). And I LOVE it here. How DARE they….sigh.
  3. Bargaining: I wonder if he can call branch and extend. I silently pray that this nightmare will just go away until the spring, knowing deep down inside that the timing then won’t be any better. But I still try to bargain with anything I have. At one point I am crazy enough to say that he could go on with out me and I’ll meet up with him around the holidays. Ha… right like I could REALLY do that…Funny how the grieving process goes.
  4. Depression: And then reality sets in and I know that come late September, just weeks after I get my book in my hands, I will be starting over once again. And that makes me sad. I’m grateful that I’ve learned to let myself experience the feelings that come with military life, even when I wish I felt differently. So I take a day and cry. I cry because I’m sad, frustrated, and angry. I cry because today it feels like I have a huge bull’s-eye on my chest that the Army has chosen as their target in a plot to sabotage my book and my business. I cry because I’ll be farther from my babies and grand babies, and I cry because I love this place that feels like home.
  5. Acceptance: I’m still working on the acceptance piece - acceptance is a process, but moment by moment I find myself taking the steps to begin turning my attitude and grief around. I’ve started looking to see who I know at Ft. Leonard Wood. I’ve spent time researching how far I will be from the nearest airport and what bases are within a 1/2 days drive. I am even shocked (and pleased icon smile PCS orders military life ) to realize that I will have access to fresh produce as well as tomatoes and apples that taste like they are supposed to taste. I’m beginning to accept my fate and looking for the opportunities that will come with this move (just as they have with all previous moves).

This experience is bittersweet really, but also a lesson and a reminder.

Never ever assume that you’ve got military life mastered, because no matter how long you are a part of this community there will always be a new set of circumstances to deal with. No PCS is the same because factors and situations in our lives change. Thankfully experience has taught me that while this isn’t my choice, the sting will wear off and I’ll get there.

But right now a piece of me is still vacillating between denial and acceptance …secretly wondering, hoping really, if it’s all some big mistake.

~~~

Known by military spouses around the world as The Direction Diva, Judy Davis is a motivational speaker, lifestyle blogger, advocate and author of Right Side Up: Finding Your Way When Military Life Turns You Upside Down. A military spouse herself, Judy blogs, writes and speaks with a passion for changing the hearts of the military community and shares T.I.P.s (Tools, Information, and Perspective) to help military families become stronger. To connect with Judy, read her blog or obtain information about speaking & keynote topics, seminars & programs visit: http://thedirectiondiva.com (Inspiring Military Spouses)  or  http://livingthrucrisis.com (Helping Military Families Find Hope)

{ 12 comments }

Tech Moment: Mastering The Cloud With My Nokia Tablet by Judy Davis – The Direction Diva

July 22, 2014

Cameron Diaz would have us think that “Nobody Understands The Cloud”. Well Ms. Diaz I beg to differ!  Well that is after yesterday when the aforementioned clouds parted and understanding came streaming down from the most unlikely source. You see I’m a little “below-average” on the tech scale. Like most people I use my smartphone to stay […]

Read the full article →

Military Life: Talking About War by Britta Reque-Dragicevic

July 17, 2014

For years we have been a nation at war. For years our veterans have kept their experiences silent. I remember my father in law (a WWII veteran) getting a distant look and finding an excuse to leave the room whenever a history question was asked by my children.  He couldn’t talk about his experience and […]

Read the full article →

Walk your way to Success…

July 10, 2014

When you were a little child, you got it in your head that you wanted to walk and you did. You didn’t let anything stop you and eventually you achieved success. Little by little, you worked on developing the skills you needed to walk. You grabbed on to something and pulled yourself upright. You stood […]

Read the full article →

Military Life: Deployment is a time to choke up and swing…

July 7, 2014

Over the last few days I’ve found myself wondering why. Why the upheaval in Iraq. Why did that person share such a thing on social media. Why did she get cancer? Why Why Why…it was like a 2 year old just discovering the world around them and I couldn’t stop it. And then I heard a speaker who […]

Read the full article →