The New Wifestyle Profile | Kim
we are currently on our way home from china back to portland right this very second! i hope you celebrated ‘veteran’s day’ by thanking all of the veterans of our country, past and present because we are afforded so many freedoms because of their sacrifice. with that being said, i am so pleased to introduce you to kim and captain chin!
kim and i actually went to middle school together for a hot second and then reconnected in college and she is sharing today how different life can be when you’re married to someone in the military. from moving across the country (and most likely the world eventually) to deployment to her struggling with anxiety-she shares it all!
Let me set the scene for you. It was our first date, our first words to each other after saying hello:
Starbucks June 2011.
Jeff: “Sorry if I’m squinting a lot.”
Kim: “It’s okay, is something in your eye?”
Jeff: “I’m Chinese.”
Kim: uncomfortable silence…
Dry sense of humor, check! We laughed and I was slightly uncomfortable, but it was the beginning of our love story!
Fast forward to 2013 when he proposed! We had a wonderful two week engagement then decided we should “just do this thing” and we went to the court house. Well, maybe it was more romantic than that, but you get the idea. Our honeymoon was a wonderful trip across the country in a U-haul and truck with our scared cat, my Dad and brother, and possibly no place to live once we arrived. This fits us perfectly and there is not one thing I would change!
Jeff and I met while he was stationed at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs. We’ve been together 3 years, married for 1 and currently live near Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
Our marriage is unique in that my husband is a Captain in the US Army and so our lifestyle is a slightly different. Some say we laugh a lot, we say we move a lot. We laugh a lot too because frankly sometimes it’s either that or cry. Laughter at least brightens the mood when you realize you have just left your hometown for the foreseeable future.
We talk about our plans for the future (short term and long term) frequently. Jeff is the one who usually begins this conversation. I do not have enough words to say how much I appreciate this because it allows us to express fears and excitement in smaller doses.
Support, trust and understanding! These three words have shaped our marriage.
We support each other’s career goals and personal goals. His love for being in the Army, my desire to start an Etsy shop. We will help each other navigate these goals with unwavering support.
Trust, when Jeff’s job has him arriving home four hours later than scheduled and he wasn’t able to call. After freaking out that maybe something happened to him when he calls I know and trust he would’ve called earlier if he was able. Him trusting me to follow him and his job and not leave him because of the stress of military life.
Understanding that some days are tough and Jeff knowing that I will always love and support him, but allowing me to have time to express annoyances with military life. Also understanding the frustrations Jeff feels about my anxiety.
These three words, while not always easy to practice, will continue to be the foundation of my ‘wifestyle’ and our marriage.
The Army has been the single most amazing and frustrating part of our relationship. Through Jeff’s job we will get to live all over the US and possibly the world! Um hello Germany or Italy, I’m looking at you! At this point Jeff has to gently remind me that just because I wish to go there doesn’t mean the Army has to listen. Say what! Living all over the country is amazing, but it does come with issues!
A struggle we face is that I have anxiety and thankfully I have a loving and supportive husband who will help me through! He smiles as I show him my packing list organized by color and number (so I can find things quickly and make our new house as homey as possible, as fast as possible). He helps me think through social situations where I only know him and keeps me positive. I am learning to have patience because he is having to deal with my anxiety too, which can’t be easy!
Another obvious issue is deployments. While we’ve only been through one deployment together it was an experience that truly shaped our relationship for the better. We learned so many things in those nine months. Like how to be a good listener about what he was going through. I had the love and support of family and friends within driving distance, he did not. He had fears and anxieties I could not relate to, but listening was all I needed to do. We also learned things like I shouldn’t watch the news before talking to Jeff each day because my mind somehow placed him everyplace something terrible was happening.
In the end though, that welcome home ceremony was worth all the time apart. When he called from Alaska I broke down in tears in a restaurant because he was back in the US and SAFE! Our waiter gave me a strange look so I felt compelled to tell him it was not the food that was making me cry, but happy tears that Jeff was almost home. Then I missed the dismissal because I dropped my camera then looked up to a sea of camo rushing the stands, thankfully Jeff saw me and headed straight for me, chuckling because he saw the whole thing! That moment was magical!
What three words would you use to guide your marriage?
Awkward first date conversation with your now husband/wife?