Growing up a Military Brat

 

From the childs perspective.

 

 

What’s it like?

— It’s an overwhelming feeling of excitement. You never know where you will be next, but you are thrilled to find out. Then you arrive to your new place. From there, it’s car ride after car ride, riding around in the car with your parents checking everything out- the shops, food, schools, churches, activities, and do all the google-ing you can! The family gets settled and you start school. Kids are right up under you, giving you the spill. They tell you about the teachers, the students, and the cafeteria food. There are some kids who instantly befriend you and some who instantly hate you.

You take it all in… from meeting the whole school and giving your introduction a thousand times

to

checking out the clothes everyone is wearing and listening to the way they talk because every state has a “thing” in style and slang words

to

feeling awkward when the people around you bring up inside jokes.

— It’s a bittersweet feeling. You are leaving the friendships you just made. As soon as they are getting real good, the moving time pops up. You are reminded of all the memories. There is talk of you two staying in contact via phone or internet, but at the same time you both know the huge possibility of you guys moving on and going separate ways without any contact. Some friendships last long, some do not. As sad as it can be, it is also kind of cool. It’s cool because you are about to move to a place where you can make more rad friends! New people in a new location, making new memories.

 

My Story

I was born in Florence, Alabama along with the rest of my family members. I didn’t really grow up around them, obviously. My parents and I would visit every year to three years depending on their work schedules and how close we were living. Every visit would mean so much more than the last- distance really does make the heart grow fonder. I am an only child so while moving was fun I so wish I had someone to experience all the good and all the bad times with.

I never really felt in the loop of things from family to a good group of friends. Every time I would get really close to someone, I would move. It was hard, but during the process of it all I never deemed it to be a big deal. I always loved moving. In fact, I craved it. I appreciated every friendship I made. Continuously exploring different areas is such an adventure for me. So, overall moving around has been very beneficial. I have so much perspective!!! I have loved every bit of it. Seeing views differently has stuck with me so much so that people call me a gypsy.

Places I have Lived

— Alabama

— Virginia

— Rhode Island

— California

— Japan

— Maryland

— Visited way too many places to list! You can read about my favorite here.

 What I learned

— Taught me to soak up each friendship. Appreciate each person I met. Not to grow bitter when we go our separate ways.

Perspective. Everyone is raised differently in how their parents bring them up, the people they are around, the things they see, and activities going on around them. Once each of us grasp the understanding of perspective, the world will be less hateful and more understanding.

— Being a military brat has taught me independence. I am okay with myself, as I am. Going to the movies by myself is just fine. I have a full relationship with myself. I think me being an only child played a part in that as well. As I grew older there were times I felt very lonely. I would think “what is wrong with me?” but honestly, I have made friends in every single place I have lived. I have never had a hard time meeting a stranger. The lonely times are inevitable. Most real friendships take years to grow. There a couple of very close friends that I have and those are the ones I made out in California- go figure! The past two Summers I made it out there to visit them so I am thankful for that. Shout out to WBK.

 

 

Comments

  1. My children are all military brats. Don’t really like that term. They loved it and didn’t mind moving, we looked on it as an adventure. They love to travel, meet people easily and have seen so much other kids haven’t at their age.

  2. Love this! I grew up a military brat as well. Also, I’m from Alabama. You really hit a lot of the feelings head on. Great post and thanks for sharing!

  3. That is SO cool you’ve gotten to live in so many places, even if it meant having to restart a bunch…I’ve lived in the same town my whole life so I’m impressed/jealous you’re so well traveled!! 🙂

    • Yes! I have connected with friends from middle school. Social media has been awesome in the sense of reconnecting!

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