21 August 2015

Day 110: Strong, a double-edged sword

You like to smile in my face, pat me on the head and say "good job". You love to tell me how strong I am. What does that mean exactly? I used to think it was a compliment, but I am beginning to see the flip side of that coin.

Apparently if I am "strong" I am supposed to take it - over, over and over again. I am able to ignore when people slight me. People think I am unaware of their words, deeds and intent. Individuals don't think I notice their efforts to undermine my integrity or spirit. If I am "strong" I am expected to forgive and forget - constantly be the "bigger" person and never get my feelings hurt. If I am "strong" it is okay for people to ignore when I ask for help, because it won't bother someone so "strong".

People like that, the mean girls, think people like me can not truly exist. So they find ways to break those who are different, because if there are GOOD people in this world than they must not be one of them. You must be lacking. You must be flawed.... so they can remain perfect.

Well, to those who pander to their own conceit, may you continue to enjoy your narcissistic ineptitude thinking that your comments go unidentified, your actions subtle and your impact genuine. 

The truth is this. 

I am strong, and my efforts are genuine. My joy is real and lasting while yours is derived from the pain of others. There is more to my existence than the superficial subterfuge that defines your life. So, enjoy your gossip binge. Your cackling and laughter. The next time you see me I'll still be strong; you'll still be shallow and cruel.

The world needs us both without ugliness; beauty cannot be fully appreciated. 

XO XO & Stuff, 


post script:
There are many more like US - those who care, those who work selflessly, those who feel deeply - than those who only care for themselves. If you're one who gives keep giving and grow stronger through the adversity the hateful crowd provides. We'll win in the long run. You just have to stay STRONG. 

06 August 2015

So Your Sailor Didn't Make Chief

My Sailor waited anxiously everyone around him saying "this year for sure" or "get ready for The Season" and "its your year"... he sat hitting the refresh button or waiting for the CMC to call his name. He studied. He waited. He hoped...

Only to have to call home and say "not this time babe".

Meanwhile facebook is exploding with congrats messages to everyone you know. Your phone is pinging with "did he make it" messages....and your heart is breaking.

You want to be happy for everyone that made it, but so bitter that the demi-gods in Millington were too blind to see the quality human being your Sailor is. You're pissed off that once again THEY messed it up. You want to call someone and chew their ass, and yet you feel helpless on how to help the person you love most deal with this disappointment.

Not once, twice or three times... Four times over the person I consider the most amazing man walking the face of the earth wasn't good enough for the title "United States Navy Chief Petty Officer" (or at least not in the opinion of those sitting the selection boar).

Well... I feel you. I get it. I cussed the Navy at the top of my lungs for four years running. .

I would congratulate those who made "THE LIST"... and I'd hide notifications from them until 16 SEP.

I would respectfully request that those who are highly involved in The Season, refrain from inviting me to fundraisers and events.

Bit my tongue when  someone's girlfriend asked for help picking out her dress for the Khaki Ball. (the girlfriend was my sister and she had no CLUE it was a CPO related thing so well..  big sis had a date and didn't know what to wear).

After all of that I'd take a step back and try to regain my grasp on the suck it up straw I'd used the year before.

I'd like, congratulate and call friends on the BIG DAY when their loved one finally got to wear those highly coveted anchors. I'd choke back tears and bitterness as they'd say thank you and try to be encouraging.

I don't write this to tell you to suck it up or show you some magical silver lining, but to remind you that you aren't alone. Some Sailors are selected their first time before the board; others are pulled from the brink of retirement because the doors to the Goatlocker finally opened to them.

There are some things that are easier said than done, but I tried to be angry privately. I can't tell you how many passive aggressive "I hate the Navy" statuses I typed and deleted. How many smart mouth "yeah well talk to me when the promotion quota is less than 9% then tell me how easy it is to make it" responses I said in my head (and sometimes out loud).

It was difficult to comprehend that my confident and competent husband who gives so much of himself was overlooked and filled with confusion and disappointment. How do I lift up the person who's always been my rock?  I asked HIM what he needed? Want to talk? Want to yell? Want a beer? Just try to be there for them, and when the time is right voice your support and encouragement (you'll know when that is).

At the end of the day that person you love. That hard working freedom fighter. That warrior who sacrifices their time, energy and body for others; is no less a man or woman based on the rank they wear. They are worthy of your love and adoration. You are exactly what they need right now.

So vent, yell at the old goats, swear you'll never get your hopes up again - and love your amazing, hard working, dedicated Sailor as much as you can.

Something earned through hardship and disappointment is so much sweeter than that which is given over easily.

Xo Xo & Stuff,