Good morning sunshynes! If you have a soldier in training (SIT) then THIS is one of many posts created just for you. You could be anywhere across the loved one spectrum – a spouse, mother, father, significant other, or even a friend – and this article would still be written for you, specifically, in mind. I am here to enlighten you about just how special you are and how crucial of a role you play in your SIT’s success. Separation is indescribably difficult, but it is genuinely just a game of “divide, yet conquer.” The age old phrase – tweaked ever so slightly – and given new, more relevant meaning. In case it is too difficult for you to see this separation as a “divide and conquer” scenario – where both you and your SIT are separate players with their own objectives and game plans – let’s try a different viewpoint: “divide, yet conquer.” While “divide and conquer” implies that the separation of you two is necessary to your success, “divide, yet conquer” implies the separation is an obstacle or barrier between you and your loved one that you will undoubtedly rise above and conquer. In spite of, not because of, this separation, you and your SIT’s united goals, dreams, and relationship will continue to be realized. The separation is not a necessary component to the reaching of your goals – that would allow it to have too much power. The separation is an obstacle, in spite of which, you and your SIT will succeed. You both will have your time to “shyne” because of the time, effort, and love you have devoted to one another, not because of the “mystical” powers of separation. “Separation makes the heart grow fonder” is an age old hoax. A hardy combination of devotion, shared viewpoints and goals, unconditional love, and effort, in every situation, is what makes the heart grow fonder. Isn’t it a much better feeling to overcome together rather than to believe a separate arrival is necessary?
With that being said, self-care is immensely important to the success of the relationship. It has been heartbreaking at times to have my husband gone. I will never once utter the phrase, “Separation makes the heart grow fonder,” because that is not what has gotten C and I to where we are today. A devotion to us, an emphasis on we, and a plan for our future has helped us to arrive at our current destination. Together, we have overcome so many unfortunate happenings in our young life: the sudden death of a parent at age 17, a hard battle with mental illness, financial hardship, and family struggles. But I am here to say that I am still strong, we are still strong, in spite of these hardships, not because of them. I refuse to give power to inanimate obstacles. I refuse to give us less credit than we have earned. I refuse to believe that any hardship has led us to accomplish any of our goals. I will hold fast to the knowledge that him and I have built this love; him and I have mortared the bricks, dug the moat, and fastened the drawbridge to our castle, in spite of these obstacles. You are still strong; they are still strong. The construction of a healthy and deeply meaningful relationship with your SIT can never be accomplished by just you or just them. Together, you are a united front that must accomplish all of this together. Do not give up; do not feel alone. Do not feel that the job you are doing at home is somehow less important. It should be difficult to question your worth when you finally understand that you are united in success.