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The Sisterhood, What It Meant To Me, Gaby Juergens

I started Homefront Girl® a few years back with absolutely no knowledge of really, what I was doing; my husband at the time had retired after 25 years and moved us to a very isolated community in the Midwest.

My son went off to high School and my husband took off the camo and boots and got into civvies and I was left wondering what do I do with the rest of my life? Up until then, I was pretty much the same as many of my brethren who married into this life for love; I devoted my life to my family and my other family which was the military family. So being a professional volunteer was what I knew, and I was very proud of my years of service in doing so.

So in a nutshell I looked around and decided I could veg on a couch and eat my way through every type of cheese and wine in the area, watching Bravo and
the Housewives (yes, guilty pleasure, don’t judge) but instead I knew I wanted to do something that still had me engaged in shining a light on what was fading more and more in my rearview mirror - my former life. 

I’d spent my life with a front row seat witnessing selfless service, sacrifice on both sides of the brave and the only thing at my disposal was the journals I’d kept of observations over the years, moments that I wanted to remember and will never forget, of that bravery, of the faces and the families and the
soldiers and their stories. So, I dipped my creative pen into that inkwell of inspiration and created Homefront Girl® my studio from where I would create inspirational artwork that I would license to companies that would then create products that spoke to this way of life.

Along the way, I was happy that I could pay it forward with the collections to countless military charities such as Hope for the Warrior, Lone Survivor foundation, Final Salute, Operation Homefront, Homes for our troops and most
recently with my candle collection, United Through Reading and countless times our many military spouses org that work very hard to raise money for military scholarships that make it possible for our spouses and children to follow their dreams.

Many times, the idea of Sisterhood has come to mean a bond of something that is shared, experiences, emotions, pride and more. In the military when you marry into it, there is a Sisterhood that in no way I feel should minimize the contribution our Male spouses also share, the term “Sisterhood” is just one that could as easily be called brethren or brotherhood. A few years ago, I wrote a small gift book, titled, Military wives a Sisterhood. I illustrated it with Homefront Girl art and when I wrote it (it’s a simple little book no great American novel here) I wanted to write something that could be shared with a battle buddy, a new bride, or one leaving this life and its traditions. We may leave the military, but it never
really leaves us. Ah, there is that bond that binds.

I want to share it here with all of you. I dedicated it to the other half of the Brave- the Sisterhood.

“Blaze a path that is your own and lend a hand to those that follow you.”
Who are we?
A bond we share forged in experiences only we can understand because we lived the life.
Get ready... we are joined together in a sisterhood of loving someone who serves their country.

It won’t be easy, but, you will grow stronger and help your sisters along the way.
Moving Day: It begins “Don’t Forget the Pink forms!” You’ll understand why! And, careful they don’t
pack, the cat, the dog, the kid, or the hamper filled with dirty laundry.
Always remember in the end, the military is a revolving door: It’s not good-bye, only, “see you soon.”
There are our Battle Buddies. What would we do without them? I shudder to think. Murphy’s law seems
to religiously strike when the deployments start or the training exercises.
There are somethings only a battle buddy can understand and relate to... one thing to remember... your
family just got bigger. Battle buddies will understand OPSEC, the need to always have on hand, wine,
chocolate and an ear
even if the call you place or accept is at 3am and their response is, “I was up any way.” These are
“Foxhole Friendships” forged in common experiences we share.

Who are we?

We are an Army of one... it was a great slogan and guess what it applied to us as well. We are career women, moms, carpool duchess, organizational queen, Family Readiness Group leaders, mentors, PCS has nothing on us and
In the end we muster up grace under fire when we least thought we could. We wear no Rank...just strength. We are an Army of one because we have to be.
What will she wear? You’ll discover the need for the Little Black Dress and its claim to fame in the Military Wife Hall of Fame. Never has one garment performed so well, so many times in so many locations. It’s “Old Reliable” and it
will be your go to from luncheons, Farewells, Receptions, Retirements, Dining outs, Formal? Semi-Formal? Yep, we know what’s in the Sisterhood closet!


If there is a recipe for who we are here’s a partial of how would it read:
3 cups of an adventurous spirit, 2 cups of Wisdom, 1⁄2 cup of Grace under Fire, 1 cup of Hospitality, generous sprinkles of laughter (A good sense of humor is priceless), Equal measures of Hope and Faith, a few drops of gardening skills because she’ll Need to bloom in many a foreign soil. (The rest of recipe is in my other Gift book, “Recipe for a Military Wife”) next blog!

We travel the world and along the way we shop the world. “We came, we saw, we maxed out our weight limit!” Yep, been there and done that! We fell in love with a prince in uniform and we proudly chose this life. It’s who we are.

Sometimes it is difficult but then we “Slap on a little CamoTM” (makeup) or we put our big girl “Fatigues” on and deal with it, because we are the only ones who can.
And we have the cutest pair of “fatigues” around! Many times, you will hear the word, “dependent” but we are anything but dependent. I’ll break it down in military speak:
S1- She is all the manpower you need and then some
S2-Intel is her middle name- She is the eyes and ears of her family.
S3-She is Household 6 and her Ops is together
S4- PCS much? She’s got this. She has to.
S5-Organization and planning makes her the Queen of Squared Away.
She is the Full Staff. So, in the MilSpouse world she is an Army of one.
Along the way, we are tested, and we show grace. It’s a hallmark. We understand what Full Honors means, what sacrifice truly means, we have seen it up close and personal. We understand that two of the most precious words we can hear are, “I’m Okay.” Across the stretch of a phone line.
This is us.

How it began... a Prince in Uniform stole our heart (we stole their last #four) but  the story continues, may yours continue. Make it a good one.

Love,
Gaby

 

 

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7 comments

  • We always have a spare guest room, couch or patch of floor for anyone that needs it. We keep fresh linens on stand-by and the wine cooler fully stocked. The freezer is never without ice cream. We listen to Christmas Carol’s in July because it makes us happy when we are lonely and just want to scream, “Dear God PAHLEASE give me a little more time with my man”. We keep our passports on us at all times and have learned how to protect our family in every way (even spending a bit of time at the firing range).
    And…if its generational, as it is in my family, we stay current on all of the social media apps. Hovering in the background and commenting occasionally with one of two words:
    OPSEC
    LANGUAGE
    Lol, but please be aware that we do this with love, respect and admiration for the guy in the uniform that we fell in love with…and produced more of them…omg…I will never be out of this fabulous, exciting, lonely, multicultural life!

    AND THAT’S OK!!

    Much love to our Doe Eyed Girl,
    Tammy

    Tamara Mooradian
  • I love the breakdown of military specialties as applies to spouses! I used to call myself the Kitchen CINC.

    Sharon
  • Oh, all the feels — sraight to the heart! <3

    Karen Godfrey

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