How to Navigate Motherhood When Your Spouse is Deployed
“This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of 1 Natural Way, a TRICARE breast pump provider. All opinions are entirely my own.”
Deployment of your military spouse can be an extremely difficult time especially when you are a mom. It takes a dash of patience, a sprinkle of grace and a serving of personal strength with each passing day. It’s a lot easier said than done.
During each of my husband’s deployments, I wore multiple hats – mother, father, discipliner, comforter, educator, bill payer, shopper, chef, bedtime story teller, diaper changer, launderer, and everything in between. Each deployment added a new mix of struggles, emotions, and stress into our lives. Raising three boys adds more struggles, emotions and stress as my boys had to deal with dad being gone.
Below I will share how you can still navigate motherhood when your spouse is deployed. With some strategies and assistance, we can overcome whatever is thrown at us.
5 Tips To Help Navigate Motherhood When Your Spouse Is Deployed
Have A Support System
I am thankful I had a support system of family and friends. I don’t know how I would have done it all on my own and Caleb was having some issues that we were working through. Find people to help you along the way. If you have family nearby, let them come and help you. A few hours to unwind and recharge will help rejuvenate your energy and decrease your stress. Accept any help that is offered and don’t be afraid to ask for assistance! If you don’t have family close by, a support system that you talk to over the phone on hard days can be a huge blessing. Even finding help with other military families is excellent. I created wonderful friendships this way. Many of these families either had a spouse deployed or have gone through deployments. Military families have a strong bond forged through sacrifice. Friendships are made almost immediately and their support through the most difficult of times is not only unheard of, it’s also needed and greatly appreciated.
I wish this was an option when we had Caleb, but now that it is available for military families, I want to help raise awareness. If you have a baby or are currently expecting, 1 Natural Way is a program that provides assistance to mothers whose spouses are deployed. They offer a breastfeeding pump, supplies, and even education to help you find success in breastfeeding. It is a great resource that gives you high-quality pumps like Medela and Spectra to Tricare Members. Medela is one of the top brands that most hospitals recommend to new moms and it is the very brand I used after my Caleb had his stroke and I had to pump for a year for him.
With the Tricare insurance plan, you pay nothing for the pump and supplies. My husband was a military man for over 20 years and I know that money can be tight. A company such as 1 Natural Way, who offers a free breastpump for nursing and expectant mothers is a tremendous blessing and it takes only five minutes to sign up. They will ship the breast pump and supplies to your doorstep! I wish this resource was available with my pregnancies, especially with Caleb. I am SO excited this blessing is available now.
If you are a nursing mother, I have an excellent recipe for lactation cookies. These cookies helped keep my milk supply up during the time I was pumping and feeding my youngest. This recipe is actually my husband’s and he faithfully made these lactation cookies for me until he deployed again the second time. They were such a huge help to me and full of superfoods that helped maintain my milk supply!
Create A Routine
Routines are necessary, especially for children whose parent is deployed. Even though things are different at home, your child can trust in the routine and schedule you create! Military life can make things feel unstable for children, so having a good reliable schedule makes them feel like things are still in control. Just remember to not be so rigid that you can’t be available for phone calls and video conferences. Also, don’t be afraid to manipulate the routine to visit the ice cream stand.
Patience and Grace
Practice patience and grace each day. I know you’re struggling to make it through each day and your child is struggling because Daddy isn’t home. Your child might act out because they feel like they lost control, confused or struggling. Imagine how your child feels and find ways to help make him/her feel confident in life and help them handle the situation. Remember that tomorrow is a new day.
Take Care of Yourself
It is important to ensure not to neglect your health during this deployment. Go for a walk with the kids, exercise at the gym if you have a baby sitter, purchase an exercise DVD or stream one on the internet and exercise in your bedroom. Do something to remain strong and healthy. As a mother, it is our nature to care for others and put their needs before ours. Make sure to rest, take “me” time even if it is something as simple as a long bath or read a book. We need time to decompress, process things and rejuvenate for the next day.
Know that you are strong and utilize friends and family during this deployment. Resources such are available to you such as 1 Natural Way. And download an app on your phone to keep track of the countdown. You’re one day closer to reuniting with your military hero!