NEW BEGINNINGS IN MILITARY LIFEAs many of you know I have been immersed with my son in the writing of our Living thru Crisis memoir. It is a project that is difficult  and important all at the same time. We are telling the story of our family’s journey through my son’s depression, addiction and suicide attempts in a raw, real and heartfelt way.

I’m so grateful that friends like Hope Griffin have been able to share their words of wisdom with me and my readers, and today’s guest post doesn’t disappoint.

New Beginnings in Military Life by Hope Griffin

Military life is ripe with the opportunity to start fresh, to begin again, to pick yourself up dust yourself off and move forward. We have not had the opportunity to move often. To some of you opportunity may seem strange but when we joined the Army what excited me the most was the opportunity to see the world, or at least the US for me and the kids. Somehow, 7+ years in, we are still at our first duty station. [click to continue reading …]

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07 _ 10 _ 2015 (1)Depression and Anxiety are conditions that many deal with to varying degrees at different times in their lives. From mild to sever, situational to manic, depression and anxiety can be an issue that all of us may have to deal with day in and day out.

In past posts I’ve talked about how to tell if you are almost depressed and have shared about my son’s battle with depression and addiction on Living thru Crisis. When I ran across a blog post a few weeks ago called 81 Awesome Resources When You Can’t Afford a Therapist I was surprised at how many resources there were available free or for a nominal fee. (see below for some of my favorites depression and anxiety apps)

What blew me away was the impact technology has had on behavioral/mental health treatment. From the use of video conferencing for medicine management (a solution to a shortage of Psychiatrists) to various websites, apps and social media  the management of symptoms using technology is helping the medical community treat and support those dealing with mental and behavioral health issues.

I personally love to use my smart phone (an HTC One M9 given to me as a member of the VZWBuzz team*) for apps like Breath2Relax and Happify to keep me balanced and thinking positively.  It’s speed, ease of use and incredible on the go accessibility makes it simple to keep an open and positive mindset.

Technology can really help fill in the gaps to mental health care and here are some of my favorite mobile Apps to use on the go:  [click to continue reading …]

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MILITARY SPOUSE2You know I love to shine the light on great inspiration and information here on the Direction Diva Blog, and today won’t disappoint!

I’m excited to share a blog post that was originally written by Starlett Henderson and shared on the ArmyWifeNetwork Website (which is a great place to go for tons of great info for navigating military life effectively)! Enjoy today’s post!

Military Spouse: Oath of Commitment
by Starlett Henderson:

I wondered recently how many spouses have read or asked about the promise our Soldiers have to make in order to join/rejoin the Army. To hear my husband tell it, there’s a lot of weight in those words. (I remember; I recited them once too.) We both did not want to flub them, and they were not taken lightly by anyone we knew. They’re on par with marriage vows in my opinion. All your earnestness is behind both.

What a commitment–the military life, splitting hairs between the military and the rest of your life.

So, I thought (for those who don’t know the Oath), it’d be good to read and ponder it.

ARMED FORCES OATH OF ENLISTMENT

 I, (NAME), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and

 defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies,

foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to

the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the

United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me,

according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

So help me God.

The emphasis is mine. This promise is that “blank check” you might have heard people talk about: A veteran is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to ‘The United States of America’ for an amount of ‘up to and including my life.’

More and more, there’s a sense that what is included in that “life” is a spouse, a family, a community. A Soldier doesn’t stand alone. They’re committing themselves and who or what makes them “them.” We (the spouse, the family, the community) are called upon to back that check and are invested in that Soldier. So, I wanted to put that into words. But, how? What would that level of commitment sound like? If I was called to swear an oath or make a promise to my Soldier, what would it include?

Here’s an attempt: [click to continue reading …]

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11 StrategiesWithin the last couple of weeks there has been a huge issue going on within the military community. Some would say it started with an article written by an insensitive reporter who doesn’t get what it’s like to be a military spouse. Others would say it’s yet another attack on the  “dependopatomus” image.

Everyone has challenges no matter what they are going through and sadly too often instead of coming together we as a community are our own worst enemy. A few years ago I ran across these 11 “realities”. We need to remember and apply them to our lives because they are perfect for those times when we need a bit of perspective :

11 Realities the Military Community Needs to Remember: [click to continue reading …]

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