Finding friends in the Army can be very difficult for spouses. There is so much gossip, drama, and other crap among Army wives these days. I have figured out, over the last several years, that many people you meet will become acquaintances and a select few will become actual friends. Those friends will become so special and the bond will be unbreakable. Between the deployments, struggles, and stress, you learn to lean on each other in hard times. You each share the good times and precious memories.
But…you soon learn the bitter part of Army life and friends. We all have to move away.
A very dear friend of mine is moving at the beginning of the year. We both knew it was coming, but being prepared for it is another thing. It happens to all of us, but it never gets easier I guess. We keep in touch with the friends we’ve made and dread having to start over making new ones. I know I dread it.
I have a few tips on keeping in touch and making the distance fun though.
1. Phone calls. Keep in touch on a regular basis and continue to share each other’s struggles and good times.
2. Set aside a coffee date. For example, Tuesday mornings at 0800 you pick up the phone, fill your coffee cup, and settle in for your weekly date/catch up phone call.
3. Face time/Video calls. You get to see each other and the kids can also “visit” with each other.
4. Depending on distance, plan a get-together once a year or so. Renting a cabin or something is a great weekend getaway to relax and catch up.
5. Penpal journal. One journal shared between the two of you that you mail back and forth.
6. Crazy competitions. Include your husbands and kids in little competitions throughout the year with Halloween contests and such. It’s a good way to swap photos and the kids will have fun dressing up. Each month could be a different theme too.
Anyway, those are just a few little ways to keep in touch and keep it fun. Friends don’t let a little distance get in their way. Be creative and take the time for one another. It’s really worth it in the end!