Okinawa to Washington DC.
I am excited to share with you about my trip to Washington D.C., adding more into my blog and what brought me to this point.
The past few months have moved forward in high gear. I was nominated for the 2016 Military Spouse of the Year and won the Marine Corps Base Camp SD Butler here in Okinawa. Providing me the opportunity to go Townhall and MSOY Ceremony this past week. What an honor to be around so many amazing men and women with so a mission and organizaitions to support our military communities.
This was an eye opening experience and has really motivated me to push forward even more with bringing this resource to the states. Not only myself but several other women have worked hard the last 4 years to bring awareness and continuity for our military families and those living overseas. My purpose has been set and I am driven to see this fulfilled. Networks are being established and connections are being made.
Not many understand the lifestyle laid at our feet. Not to say other's don't have their struggles and obstacles to overcome. Having been a military spouse for 18 years, there have been times I've wanted to throw in the towel. Between long deployments, 30-60 days trips, holidays, birthdays and big events missed, I'd have to remind myself to stay strong. Fortunately, my husband didn't miss the birth of our kids, but I know many who have. I know many families who've had spouses barely make it home for the birth of their baby. I known women to experience the loss of their husband, not ever meeting their newborn. I've watched families get uprooted from our overseas location because of medical issues with her or baby, never to return to Okinawa. Literally leaving their house in someone else's hands to pack up and close the doors.
I've witnessed the victories and heard the stories of families who've received help from myself and other doulas in our network. We've impacted only a small percentage of our island but there is so much more to do. To help fill the gaps where when the Active Duty Service Member goes back to work, a postpartum doula can be there. To provide guidance and support for a single active duty expectant woman, a mother of a deployed spouse, the birth experience where both parents can be there. This is a critical stage in a new families life and to have the support of a birth doula, postpartum doula, lactation counselor, etc., should be available to our military families no matter what duty station they end up at.