Our monthly "What's Your Story" contest has been an amazing success and we want to thank you for your participation. Each month, the essays have amazed and inspired the SpouseBUZZ authors. Each month, it's been difficult to choose a winner because the entries are just that good. January was no exception.
January's topic was "What I've Learned About Myself Since I Became a Milspouse." The winning essay was written by Stephen.
It's really difficult to even know where to begin. For 18 years of marriage, I was the bread winner of the family. Tracy worked a few outside jobs but for the most part, she hasn't worked outside the home in almost 12 years. Nothing against my wife in that, though. We just decided that she would be the stay at home mom and I would be the one who worked outside the home. Even though I helped her some, she did the majority of the "house" duties.2006 started just like any other year but by February, there were changes on the horizon. My wife had decided that she wanted to do something and that something was joining the Army. Being prior service, I was proud of her for this. It wasn't until she got closer to leaving that the reality sunk in; I was going to be the one responsible for the "house" duties. I tried to show a strong face that I was going to be able to handle it but deep down I was a little concerned. I mean we have 5 kids ages 4, 6, 7, 12 and 13. I was working a full time job plus doing consulting work for another. On top of that was just trying to keep the house clean. Well, guess what? I can do it. I mean I made a few mistakes in the beginning and I still make some now but for the most part, I have it under control.I can make sure the kids are dressed nicely (and match).I can pull the little girls hair up into ponytails and all.I can cook something besides hotdogs and chili.I mean, I can do this!What I have learned the most out of all of this is that I love my wife more than words could tell. She really is my soul mate and I miss seeing her and being with her. After having been married so long, I have found that a lot of people get complacent and don't appreciate what their spouse does. I have to admit that I had gotten that way in certain aspects. I'm not that way now. I now know I need her in my life to make me whole.
WOW! Stephen's wife must be so proud of her husband.
Stephen - great job. You'll receive your prize package soon.
As always, we want to thank USAA for donating a very nice gift to the prize package.
We'll announce the topic for February's contest very soon. Stay tuned.