Why Didn't You Tell Me Budget Wars Feel Personal?

Why didn't you tell me I would feel like I was the only one still upset that our heroes are still in the middle of an endless budget fight?

Am I like you?

I am a military spouse. Like many of you, I feel a great sense of pride, seeing my husband wear his uniform each day. Like many of you, I baked countless pans of brownies and rolled out the cookie dough (eating some of it in the process!) for FRG fundraisers and meetings.

Like some of you, I have eaten many dinners "for one" and celebrated holidays and special events with the other person in my life--my cat-- instead of my husband.

Like countless others, I have had that pit in my stomach when my husband had to deploy, missing my best friend, trying not to watch too much TV news (but just enough to know what's happening in the world).  I have prayed never to get that "knock on the door."

But when it comes to these budget fights, I wonder if I am like you. We, as a country, have looked to our men and women in uniform to fight and protect our freedoms. They go to faraway lands, in less than ideal conditions, to do a job that the vast majority of Americans would not want to do.

They volunteer to leave, many times at "0 dark 30", missing countless milestones and holidays. We spouses support our soldier's missions and this way of life, because, in addition to protecting our country, our loved ones would not want to do anything else.

What I am wondering, though, is am I like you in feeling that in this day and age our loved one's hard work is good only for a photo op?

Am I like you in thinking that once the  patriotic holidays come and go, the next sound bite about the military will be how expensive and overly "generous" it is to compensate and aid in the general well being of a soldier?

Am I like you in feeling frustrated when those sound bites about how much it costs to provide some form of care for our brave veterans comes from those who have never put on the boots to fight a day in their lives?

Am I like you in wondering how a human being who serves with duty and honor and has a family by their side who has sacrificed just as much is instead little more than a number on a business board spreadsheet?

Am I like you in wondering why are our soldiers good enough to risk their lives but then not good enough to be treated as a partner in the economic solution, instead of a problem that needs to be swept under the rug?

I don't know if I am like you. I may be part of a few that feels this way. All I know is that I'm a military spouse who is proud of her soldier, but not so proud of how our heroes have gone from being "soldiers" to being "pawns."

Becky is an Army spouse stationed in Europe who is doing her best to navigate this military life, one article and brownie at a time.

Why Didn’t You Tell Me is a weekly feature that gives our readers a space to tell their own story.  If you have a story for us, please submit using the contact button above. All stories must be original and unpublished.

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