Carpe Diem!

Carpe Diem!

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Image: – – Macho Spouse


EverettDaughter-220.jpgCarpe Diem is the Latin term for seize the day.  I've seen on social media, and the news, some folks complaining about the “would've/could've” aspect of their life.  Far too often people talk about things they wish they could have or should have done.  Being married to the military, I find myself slipping into that trap more and more often because my wife's Navy career can keep me from pursuing certain passions.

From under-ways and deployments to the duty days where my wife can't travel more than 20 minutes away from base; at times, my wife's career has stopped me from doing things I want to do.  It's been tough learning how to adapt to this type of lifestyle because up until a stressful duty assignment at NAS Lemoore (2008), my wife and I really didn't have to deal with duty-days, deployments, and other hindrances.  I understand many other families have it worse than we do, but that still doesn't make it easier.  Dealing with the Lemoore assignment, however difficult it was, helped me understand a valuable life lesson...Carpe Diem!

In 2008 we were stationed at NAS Lemoore.  That whole time there was very trying on the nerves of this family.  We were very limited in our travels because my wife was one of two respiratory therapists at the Naval Hospital in Lemoore.  So two people divided duty and pager duties.  When one person left, all the duties were left to one person.  So this greatly limited what time we had away from the base and even those times away had to be scheduled a month or so in advance.

In 2011 my wife received a blessing in her orders and we PCS'd to Florida.  She is going to school to become a commissioned Navy Officer.  I'm pretty proud of that! But the road here has been tough with many ups and downs.  One of the downs was my having to give up on a hobby I truly love, marching music.  Between my wife's career, our family and location, there wasn't really an opportune time or place for my music. Did I say I love marching music?  I enjoy everything from marching bands to drum and bugle corps. I even like to see an occasional winter guard show...maybe even a winter drum line show too.  Earlier this year an opportunity to march with a group from Inverness, Florida came up and that's when some problems arose.  You see, if I wanted to pursue this passion, it would come at a cost of alienating the delicate balance of time and commitment I have with my family.  I had to come to the realization that my time here in Florida is about supporting my wife, not playing tuba.

So here's where the Carpe Diem fits in.  I could've just sat around and got mad about the situation, or I could try and make it work. I chose and am focusing on the later.  I'm happy to report that I've been able to connect with some really great musicians who turned into great friends.  I think this is the most I've ever been connected to a community outside my home state of California.  And ever since I got myself plugged in to this local community, I'm now able to take advantage of musical opportunities that pop up every now and then; just as long as they don't interfere too much with my wife's study time. I'm ok with that.  In fact, an opportunity to join a group from Orlando for a parade in Winter Park just popped up and I grabbed it.  They were looking for another marching tuba and I was able to connect with a Florida friend to make that gig happen.  I've also been able to perform with two groups here in the Jacksonville area on a limited-time basis.  So instead of succumbing to a negative situation and NOT playing at all, I embraced my reality and have found groups that understand my crazy Navy lifestyle.  It isn't perfect, but I'm ok with that.  I've had to miss some rehearsals here and there, but that's OK because I would rather have the opportunity to play a little rather than not at all.

What I'm trying to say is, we've got to try and change our mindset.  Don't give up when things seem hopeless.  Look for what can be done instead of what can't...then do it.  Don't have “would've, could've”regrets.  Flexibility, family teamwork and some understanding can go a long way with the pursuits of what make us happy.  Carpe Diem!

(About the author:  Everett is a male military spouse, stay-at-home-dad, and Macho Spouse contributor.  His wife is active-duty Navy currently stationed out of Jacksonville, FL.) 

See also...

image for Military Spouse Appreciation Day Virtual Career Fair by Veteran Recruiting Services

Military Spouse Appreciation Day Virtual Career Fair by Veteran Recruiting Services


Did you know that there are virtual career fairs held that allow you to meet and interact with recruiters from the comfort of your own home? Check out this press release from Veteran Recruiting Services about an upcoming virtual career fair for military spouses.

PHILADELPHIA, May 7, 2013 -- /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- Veteran Recruiting Services, the recognized leader of virtual career fairs for the military community is pleased to host the Military Spouse Appreciation Day Virtual Career Fair in support of the White House Joining Forces Initiative on May 10th.

Military Spouses from all over the world with have an opportunity to meet and interact live with recruiters in the virtual career fair, and from the comfort and convenience of their home or office. Each employer will have a virtual booth that will provide everything the spouse will need to consider when looking at their next career choice.

Thirty of America's leading employers will participate including: 24 Hour Fitness, Aetna, Airgas, Citi, Comerica Bank, Convergys, DaVita, DialAmerica, DISH, Exelon, Graybar, Intercontinental Hotels Group, Lowe's, Military Spouse Employment Partnership, Nordstrom, Penske, Pfizer, Progressive, Sears Holdings Corporation, The Mission Continues, Travelers, TSA, USAA, Union Pacific Railroad, Verizon, Volt, Walgreens, Waste Management, Wells Fargo, and Xerox.

Military Spouse Appreciation Day

Friday, May 10th

1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Join us for a great event exclusively for Military Spouses, and be entered to win some great prizes such as;

$50 Visa gift cards every 30 minutes

$200 Coach gift card


Register Here

image for Top 5 Ways to Show Appreciation to Military Spouses

Top 5 Ways to Show Appreciation to Military Spouses

MSShirt.jpgA few weeks ago AT&T contacted me about writing a couple blogs on how best to appreciate a military spouse. Now, since Military Spouse Appreciation Day is on May 9th, I thought this was a great gesture by one of America's largest corporations to ask this question specifically of male spouses. Plus, AT&T offered a couple iPad gift baskets in exchange for my thoughts. The deal is that I have to share one of those iPads with you guys. I felt that offer was a no-brainer, so here you go. My top five ways people can acknowledge the sacrifices military spouses make on behalf of their families and nation. Before I begin, I want to make it clear that the following list is how I want to be appreciated; we're all different and I know other guys have different ideas. That's great! If you add your ideas below this story, I will put your name in a hat for a chance to win one of those AT&T iPad gift baskets (the only disclaimer I'm putting on this is that you must have your entry in before midnight on May 4th.)

One more thing, I feel a little self-conscious writing this because I really don't think anyone needs to appreciate me as a spouse. I'm happy and proud to live this lifestyle without any recognition. Tens of millions of people go to work everyday, many in not such great environments and/or circumstances. I do believe military spouses have it more difficult than most, but we're just doing our part to help make this country great.



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