Being a military spouse is special. You get to love and stand beside a real-life hero every single day. Watching them continually put on that uniform and go out into the world to defend us all is powerful. It’s also very hard. Military and veteran spouses are sometimes called the silent or hidden heroes for good reason.
Although the responsibilities are different from their service member, military spouses also have a role in serving this country. While the service members are completing their missions, the spouses stay behind to complete theirs. This means maintaining the home-front, solo parenting when there are children involved, working, and trying to take care of themselves all at the same time. Thankfully, leadership understands this and has devoted the last few years to providing resources for military spouses to support them; they’ve never been more appreciated!
In 1984, President Ronald Reagan dedicated a day in May to military spouses. In 1999, the Friday before Mother’s Day became the official Military Spouse Appreciation Day. May was also dedicated in that same year as National Military Appreciation Month. Since then, each president has typically put out an official message thanking spouses for their service and has also issued an official proclamation about it.
There are many ways to celebrate you and all the other military spouses in your life.
Check out your local base
Many bases have done drive-through gift bags, filled with special surprises for military spouses. Look to see what your base is doing. If they haven’t yet coordinated anything, offer to help support the efforts. This will get you out of the house and doing something really special for others.
Remember those with deployed spouses
While all military spouses are to be celebrated, we need to be sure to pay special attention to those with a deployed service member. Here are some ideas for lifting them up and celebrating them on this day:
- Get crafty and make them something special to let them know you are thinking of them.
- Create a special gift basket filled with thoughtful items to make them smile.
- Offer to watch their children so they can take some self-care time. This gift is absolutely priceless.
- Do you like to cook or bake? Surprise them with a homemade dinner or sweet treat! If you aren’t the best in the kitchen, find a restaurant that delivers and order out. You’ll not only be gifting the spouse, but also supporting your local restaurants that have been hard hit by the pandemic. It’s a win for everyone.
In the end, the biggest and most important thing you can do to celebrate a military spouse is to see them and their service. While they don’t put on a uniform, they willingly sacrifice many things to support this country. On this day, celebrate all of the military spouses both past and present by remembering them and the vital role they play.