Sunday, June 5, 2021
Hello milspouse friends 🙂 Welcome to “Letter’s from Vashti.”
Each time you come to this thread, you can expect to see something new from me about my personal experience as a military spouse or new developing ideas surrounding this blog. Think of it as…well…an open diary of my thoughts!
Today’s letter comes from a place of self-reflection and encouragement.
It’s been over a year since my husband and I have PCS’d to NAS JRB Fort Worth and let me be honest, the transition was not easy at all. I mean maybe for him it might have been simple and manageable. However, for me it was probably one of the hardest transitions of my life. I think I speak for all military spouses when I say the most difficult part about a PCS is finding new friends, finding new volunteer opportunities, in addition to finding employment. That was the case for me in all three aspects. On top of that…I had just found out I was pregnant with our daughter.
While I did manage to find freelance work, for an entire year I struggled with finding a new full-time job. Especially one that would fit perfectly into my lifestyle as a military spouse while also being flexible with me expecting very soon and becoming a new mom. For an entire year, I struggled with anxiety and depression because I felt unsuccessful. I was not used to being solely dependent on my husband for anything and it drove me nuts! Eventually I started to accept that this was where I needed to be temporarily until after my daughter would be born. Working while pregnant was just not in the picture and I had to embrace that.
I am now three months postpartum and I have finally found a job that fits perfectly into my new mom life as well as my military spouse life! Interesting enough, I found this opportunity through another military spouse that helps other military spouses find employment in between PCSing as they transition to their new duty stations. What I enjoy the most about this job already is that its team consists of mostly other military spouse employees. So naturally I already feel connected to everyone there who can relate to what I am going through on a daily basis. Most of all…it’s remote! So I have the opportunity to work from home all while still spending time with my baby girl and my adorable little Pomeranian, Chance, in between breaks.
Now although I have hired a nanny to watch my daughter while I work, it still sits well with me to know I can see her and hear her at all times. That was one of my biggest concerns while searching for work as a new mom…childcare. Finding an employer that would understand my concerns of leaving my baby at a daycare center always worried me. Because let’s be real here for a second, being a new mother, I am not ready to leave my child in the care of someone else where I can’t see what they are doing with my baby and how they are interacting with her.
As I sit here and reflect on my PCS journey and job hunting experience I would like to acknowledge the value in building professional connections with military spouse employers and recruiters. Whether you build those connections in a professional workplace or at an event as a volunteer, embrace those connections and nurture them. I was truly ready to give up on finding work because every interview I had I would get rejected. Had I not reconnected with this military spouse recruiter I would have never found this opportunity. I am truly grateful for the professional connections I have in the military community.
SIDE NOTE…this connection I have is on LinkedIn. I highly encourage that if you are reading this right now put a pin in this entry and spruce up your LinkedIn profile. If you don’t know how to work LinkedIn, how to build a proper resume and connections, Military OneSource has online training and classes you can take. Oh…and by the way if you go through Military OneSource to get your LinkedIn training done you can also get access to LinkedIn Premium for free for a year! Don’t say I never gave you anything! You’re welcome!
I want to close this letter out with a very important quote from a close friend of mine. “Accept the self-acceptance.”
I know this life is hard and can be overwhelming with constant and even last minute changes. What has helped me navigate this lifestyle is to accept that this is my life for the next 15 to 20 years as a wife, as a mom, and as a working woman. To accept yourself for who you are, what you are, and where you are is not such a bad thing. In fact, I have found that in accepting the self-acceptance things have fallen right into place at the most perfect time. Accepting that during my pregnancy it was probably best to not work at that time has lead me right here. Not only that, it also encouraged me to enjoy my pregnancy and my baby girl growing inside of me. I still get warm and bubbly inside when I think about that first kick.
So there you have it milspouses! I hope this letter encourages you to reflect on any current and/or past experiences of your crazy military spouse life. If it has or if it does, drop a comment below about that experience. I would love to hear from you and I am sure other spouses would too!
Until next time…good day y’all!