Every year when April comes around, the military community colors itself purple in honor of the Month of the Military Child. Sponsored by the Department of Defense Military Community and Family Policy, the Month of the Military Child has become synonymous with the month of April for most military families – ours included – as we honor the role and sacrifice our children play in the support of our service members. I’ve seen so many outlets share and highlight the sacrifice of military children, but I think it’s equally important to share the amazing opportunities that our children have in this military life.
The Month of the Military Child
While military life is not without its (immense) challenges, it also fosters an incredible level of resilience and strength, and it’s something that I’ve been so honored to watch blossom and grow in my own children. My children have seen, done, explored, experienced, and met more incredible people and places than so many of their civilian counterparts. Yes, they’ve sacrificed time with Ryan, holidays together, and closeness with their relatives, but they’ve gained a unique perspective that not too many children their age outside of this lifestyle can claim.
Every April, the Month of the Military Child shines a light on the unique challenges and opportunities of military life for children, and its been a great way for us to experience and find new resources for our growing kiddos, as well. Most of all though, it’s a month in which we get to celebrate our littles and the incredible people they’re becoming on this incredible journey.
Fun Facts About Our Military Children
To us, the uncertainty and constant state of flux that comes with military life is normal. It’s our every day status quo and, to be honest, we don’t really know any differently anymore. That being said, occasionally little things strike us about the amazing feats, accomplishments, and insanity of military life sneak up on us, and those are worth highlighting! Here are some fun little snippets about our own little military children’s journey:
- Each of our children was born in a different state; Spencer was born in Arizona at Fort Huachuca, Porter was born in New York at Fort Drum, and Mieke was born in Washington at JBLM
- Spencer has been in five different daycares and preschools and Porter has been in three
- Our kids have honorary “Aunties” and “Uncles” from each of the states we’ve lived
- Our children remember their friends from past duty stations, and they pick right up where they left off when they see each other again (like here!)
- Mieke met her daddy for the first 19 days of her life, then didn’t see him again until she was almost eight months old
- Porter celebrated his second birthday somewhere in the middle of South Dakota on our cross-country PCS to JBLM, and he’ll celebrate his fifth birthday in quarantine in Korea
- Spencer has lived in four different houses and three different states in six years of life
Why Does the Dandelion Represent Military Children?
Someone asked me why dandelions, an otherwise ugly weed/flower, is used to represent military children, and I found this. “The dandelion puts down roots almost anywhere, and it’s almost impossible to destroy. It’s a survivor in a broad range of climates.”
Like dandelions with the wind, military children have no say in where the military will send them. Yet, they persist. They are strong and sturdy, planting surely, swiftly, and steadily, and they grow and thrive wherever military life may take them. My children are no different, and they never fail to amaze me with their resilience. We are so proud of our little dandelions.
Tell me – have you heard of the Month of the Military Child?