What is A Military Wife? Very Touching!


I shared a shortened version of this poem by Jane Hubbard Hyde on my Facebook page (www.facebook.com/sdmilitarywife) and it has touched many military spouses. To find out more about Jane Hubbard Hyde visit her page at http://gracenik.wordpress.com/2013/01/11/what-is-a-military-wife/

What is A Military Wife?

by Jane Hubbard Hyde

Copyright 2005

WHAT is a Military Wife?

What IS a Military Wife?

What is a Military Wife?

A Military Wife can be tough to describe


She is a southern belle

a Northeastern Mets fan

a California 3rd generation recycler

a Pacific Islander

She is short or tall

a tomboy

a fashion diva.

a physician’s assistant

a teacher

a Republican

a Democrat (yes, EVEN that!)


A Military Wife is a career gal

a home-schooler

a scrap-booker

an accomplished cellist

an auto mechanic


So many kinds

many kinds

many kinds


What IS a Military Wife?

WHAT is a Military Wife?

What is a Military WIFE?


They may look different

and each is wonderfully unique

But this they have in common

This they have

They have THIS


Lots of moving



moving far from home

moving two cars,

three kids

and 1 dog

all riding with HER of course


moving sofas to basements b/c it won’t work in THIS house

moving curtains that won’t fit

moving jobs and certifications and professional development hours

moving away from friends

moving toward new friends

moving her most important luggage:


her trunk-full of memories

often waiting-



waiting for housing

waiting for orders

waiting for deployment

waiting for reunion

waiting for phone calls

waiting for the new curtains to arrive

waiting for him to come home for dinner




they call her “military dependent”, but she knows better

she can balance the checkbook

handle the yard work

fix a noisy toilet

she is intimately familiar with drywall-anchors and toggle bolts

she can file the taxes

sell a house,

buy a car

or set up a move,

all with ONE Power of Attorney.


she welcomes neighbors that don’t welcome her

reinvents her career with every PCS

locates a house in the desert,

the arctic,

or the deep south

and learns to call them all “home”.

She MAKES them all home.

She is fiercely


Military Wives are somewhat hasty

They leap into




career alternatives


and friendships


They don’t have 15 years to get to know people

Their roots are short but flexible

They plant annuals for themselves

And perennials for those who come after them.


Military Wives quickly learn to value each other

They connect over coffee

rely on the spouse-network

accept offers of friendship and favors

and record addresses in pencil.

ALL Military Wives have a common bond


The Military Wife has a husband unlike other husbands

his commitment is unique

He doesn’t have a job, he has a “mission”

he can’t just decide to quit

he’s on-call for his country 24/7

but for you, he’s the most

UNreliable guy in town!

his language is foreign






And so, a Military Wife is a translator

for her family and his.

She is the long-distance link to keep them informed

the glue that holds them together.


The Military Wife has her moments–

She wants to wring his neck,

dye his uniform pink,

and refuse to move to Siberia.

But she pulls herself together.


Give her a few days

a travel brochure

a long hot bath

a pledge to the flag

and a wedding picture,

And she goes.

She packs.

She moves.

She follows.


What for?

How come?

You may think it is because she has lost her mind.

But actually it is because she has lost her heart.

It was stolen from her by a man

who puts duty first

who longs to deploy

who salutes the flag

and whose boots in the doorway remind her

That as long as he is her Military Husband.

She will remain

his Military Wife.