Monday, May 10, 2010

You want to go where???

Day 55

Question of the day:

Do Soldiers, or any other military members, really want to deploy?

I am fully aware that I am not a Soldier, so maybe I don't fully understand the "appeal" of deploying. I understand that it's a respect thing and a patch thing and a pride thing. I am very proud of my husband and all of that jazz. He says that it's also a money thing and a bragging thing. Sure, I can understand that too.

But do Soldiers WANT to deploy? My husband said that he was "ready" and this is what he's been training to do for just about 5 years now. And I get it in that sort of respect. He felt useless going to the same pointless job everyday. I can understand that. But that was before his first deployment, that was before he lived in a war zone for 55 days with the heat and the bugs and the horrible food and the stench.

But I have some friends that just PCSed and they were put in a brigade that isn't going anywhere for a long time. As a wife, my first thought was.. YAY!! Right? They don't have to be apart and live in a war zone. Good thing, right?

Apparently, I'm fairly mistaken. I pointed this out to my husband, who is very good friends with these people, and he validated my confusion. As a Soldier you need to deploy. Okay, you need to, but do you WANT to?

And I know a few guys that have actually volunteered to deploy. This confuses me even more. Why would you ask to be separated from your family for a year to go sit in a war zone? How are your wives not super mad at you??

So I'm hoping that some military people can explain this to me. I want to understand the drive that makes these brave men and women WANT to go to fight in a war zone. This is definitely a quality I don't possess.


Expat Girl said...

I know people that have volunteered too... when it came to my husband he was "ready" for it, he said the same thing about wanting to use all of his training but at the same time he wasn't excited to go or standing at the front of the line to leave me and the baby behind!

The LT's Wifey said...

I have reserved myself to leaving this question unanswered. It is not a question for most of us to answer, I feel that the servicemember (in my case-my Husband) answers this to himself quietly everyday. Rationale and reason aside, he made this decision many years ago to be a soldier no matter what. This commitment to his country is what I find most attractive in him. The mystery of whether he wants to go, or goes out of duty is part of the attraction I have to the quality of his character. He quietly honors his duty to the Army, his country and his family. He says things "I'm ready" and that is all I need. And like you, this is a quality I do not myself possess.
And since I am new to your blog-I have let you know, I lived in KS for 5 years and never once saw a tornado. However, 6 months after I left a tornado tore off the roof of the house I used to live in.

Sara said...

Very well said LT's Wifey. I figure it's not a question that has one set answer. Just some insight would be nice.

And the thing about your house, WHOA!

The LT's Wifey said...

If I had any insight into the mind of that Soldier of mine-lol-believe me I would share! Slightly neurotic, a bit of a perfectionist and still can't remember to pick up his clothes off the bathroom floor. Joes-can't live with em'-can't live without em'!

AimeeJ said...

Imagine finding something that you really wanted to do as a career and training up to do that. Extensive training. And then, imagine that you were told you could never go to work and actually put your skills to use. They are soldiers. They train to fight b/c that is what they want to do. They want to go do their jobs. The hardest part as a spouse is learning that the two aspects of this (going to war & leaving your family) are just that...two completely separate issues. If they say they want to deploy, you can't take that as them saying they want to leave their family. THey simply want to go do their job.

Knuckles said...

Good question and I truly wish I can answer this. I think growing up I've ask this question many times before and all Dad would say is...

It's my job and I can't leave the other guys out.

I know this may not be the answer you are looking for but I don't know, personally I wish my Dad can give me a straight answer someday.

I think it really all depends from soldier to soldier but soldiers like my Dad, he wants to deploy. He WANTS to be able to do something and not just training after training and then have it all just put to waste.

If I remember right, Dad volunteered to do a lot of things and deployments may be one of 'em. I think personally think in ways he just wants to do his job and in others, he just wants to get away.

As far as the wife question, I don't know. I wish I can help you with that one too. But I think after being married to the Army and the love of your life for so long, you learn a lot about the person and what s/he wants to do. I don't want to say "deal with it" because that make it sound bad but I don't know how to phrase it to make it sound better.

Just wish I can find out the answer for you but unfortunately, I can't.

Hopefully you'll get your answer soon.

Anonymous said...

It's because when you join the military, you do it to make the world better. It's not until you deploy that you feel like you are actually making that difference. You don't WANT to leave your family, but you NEED to do your part to fulfill that need you felt when you signed up.

Anonymous said...

My husband is not excited to leave me or my son behind. However he did have a choice in this deployment. He came home when he was asked to go and we discuss it at length before he said yes. We knew being apart was going to be hard. He knew leaving our son would tear him apart. However he has said this is his job and he wants to do his job. He hates being at a desk and doing nothing. He also knows that saying yes is a good move for his career. He said he had been home for 4 years and felt it was his time to go again.