The army wife might be expected to be a well-groomed lady, but is she all this and more? Are we army wives really different?
The army, and army wives, they say, set an example for our society to emulate. An army wife is viewed as a lady who is living a life of privilege, comfort, respect and honor. Do people actually see the hard work, anxiety and sacrifice that is also a big part of being an army wife? She is not only making the country a better place by her contributions to the upkeep and betterment of women, children, and various issues plaguing the society, but she is also supporting the soldier who guards your nation.
“There is strong. There is Army Strong. And then there is Army Wife Strong.” ― Aditi Mathur Kumar, Soldier and Spice: An Army Wife’s Life.
Quotes like these and many more praise and admire the virtues of these ladies but do we see the truth behind these thoughts?
She is extra strong: she has to be as she has to virtually live on her own in many god forsaken places with no access to anything, yes in this day and age too!
She is multi-talented: needs to be, how else is she going to get her kid the theme birthday cake and party decorations in an obscure place called Binagudi or Karoo?
She makes the best teacher: needs to be a teacher as there are always schools no matter how obscure the place might be. Plus you get to keep an eye on your kids education.
She values life: Duh! She is married to an army officer; she has seen death at close quarters and knows that any goodbye could be the last they share.
She is so independent: Does she have a choice? When the hubby is away on exercise for 3 months eventually she will have to move and get things done – on her own. This includes fixing the car & the AC if needed.
She is never lonely: Because after a few years you get used to it – the separations become routine; almost.
“Missing someone gets easier everyday because even though you are one day further from the last time you saw them, you are one day closer to the next time you will.” –Author Unknown.
She celebrates all festivals regardless of her religion: Your own festival is really dull if your spouse is away for a 100 days so you celebrate whatever comes your way with cheer & joy.
She loves shopping & shops in the markets of the globe: Yes, she does. Got to pass time somehow? How many parties can you do in week?
She loves her parties & get-togethers: It’s a way of keeping busy; you throw one party and are invited to 4 in return. Everyone is busy. How else would you pass time in pace with no markets & malls?
She handles her child’s education & grooming so well: She is almost a single parent, so she has to improvise and be both a father & mother.
She moves cities like a pro: She stops herself from buying the designer decorations because she knows it will not keep well in her non ac drawing room or manage the shift from one end of the country to another. Lekhapani to Ferozpur, yes east to west; go on check the map!
CSD or the canteen is a shopper’s paradise? Seriously? How much grocery and soap can you buy? Namkeen & Naphthalene Balls are your favorite??
She lives a life of luxury: It can be quite hectic with the active social life, well-being initiatives & official commitments. Any help she can get is a blessing. Imagine attending back to back events for 3 days. She also faces the ‘maid issues’ – good help is hard to find no matter which part of the country we live in.
We love Pay commissions: So much pride in being an army wife but where is the money? Ever went clubbing with an army guy? Discount is the first thing on his mind!
“An Army wife is probably the only woman in the world who knows and readily accepts that she is the mistress, because, let’s face it, the Army is the wife and the wife gets all the damn attention!” ― Aditi Mathur Kumar, Soldier and Spice – An Army Wife’s Life
Last but not the least, it is true, She is second fiddle to the unit her husband belongs to. Imagine telling your 5 year old that, Daddy has another big family of 800 men, which is the unit and they need him too. So the needs of 800 come before the 2 of us. That’s how you justify the grueling working hours, long absences & being the second best always.
Being an army brat long before I became an army wife sure helped my cause. It is a difficult life but then all good things involve a lot of hard work. Plus, I won’t have it any other way!
Image source: army wife by Shutterstock.