My Army Wife Life & Essay Writing

At some point in your studies in college, you will inevitably come across such a task as college essay. However, sometimes students are leaving this task for the last moment as they feel like they are stuck and have absolutely no idea of what story they should share with their teacher. This is known as the writer’s block, which is quite hard to overcome, but it is still possible to achieve with the help of a few valuable tips and tricks.

Leave your comfort zone and stop sticking to the boring routine

First and foremost, in order to get rid of the writer’s block, it is important to just step out of your comfort zone and get away from the place you feel most comfortable, like your own bedroom. Just move to another place and change the scenery in order to get a few fresh ideas and come up with a fantastic story for your college essay.

Refrain from spending hours on end in social networks

Just switch off your smartphone and stop reading the updates on Instagram or Twitter. You will have plenty of time to proceed with your activity in social networks, but only after you are done with writing your college essay. Social media is an extremely distracting factor, so just shut it down.

Get acquainted with the topic of your essay and start writing

Just open a brand-new document on your laptop and start writing whatever comes into your mind. But don’t forget to take a few breaks every now and then in order to stretch your legs and make some exercises. This will help you to come up with new ideas and overcome all your worries about the outcome of your writing.

If the above recommendations didn’t help you to overcome the writer’s block, just order a paper on our website and get a masterfully written college essay for a reasonable price!

Top Writing Resources for Writing College Essay

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DADT And The Kutteles Family

by Brittany on August 19, 2010

in Army,Military,Politics

Hello Internet.

I know I’ve been a bad blogger. There is no excuse, other than life has been craaaaazy around here lately. I was going to write a nice fluffy piece about what I’ve been doing, and then I checked my email.

I received an email from a set of parents — Pat & Wally Kutteles. There son, Pcf. Barry Winchell was murdered 11 years ago at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, as a result of a violent beating. All because he was gay. They were thanking me for speaking out against DADT. In their words:

Barry lived by the values of respect, selfless sacrifice, integrity and honor throughout his service in the Army. With the continued commitment of supporters like you who are working to repeal DADT, we can make sure that Barry’s legacy of courage and love for country lives on.

You can read their story here. Every year, they travel to D.C. to push for the repeal of DADT, so that other families don’t have to go through what they went through.

So, instead of a light, fluffy piece, I’m going to bring another post back from the archives. Not from my personal site, but a piece that I wrote a few months back for LeftFace on this very subject. I’ve been hesitant to post it here, but I think now is the time. There have been so many developments in this recently, and I hope to comment on them soon. But until then, enjoy the archives.

Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT) — To Repeal or Not to Repeal
Originally Published on February 24th, 2010 on Leftface.Wordpress.com

If you know me personally, or have read my personal blog at all, it’s pretty obvious that I am a big fat hippie-loving, granola-eating tree hugger. With that, I believe that all people are equal, regardless of their choices. I may not agree with somebody, but that doesn’t make me right and them wrong. To each their own, I say! Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT), specifically, is a big issue right now, especially those of us attached to the military community. My personal opinion is a complicated one, because I can see both pros and cons to the repeal.

What I’ve been told in the past by people (i.e. people currently serving in the military) who feel very strongly against the repeal of DADT is that I have no business having an opinion or making efforts to repeal something that does not affect ME directly. I don’t have to serve with “them” (insert any slew of derogatory words and phrases here. Actually. Don’t. Because it’s not nice, Internet.)

But the problem for those people is that Gays & Lesbians CAN currently serve in the military. Which means that to those of you who are currently serving, you probably have worked with quite a few Gays and/or Lesbians and not even realized it. My husband has said that he has known more than a few over his time in the military, and most importantly, IT DOES NOT EFFECT THE JOB THAT THEY DO, nor does he think that it will effect their job if they are allowed to fully “come out.” Initial studies through congress and through other avenues have also shown that others serving in the military, who have experienced these same situations, feel the same way. There are obviously those who think it should stay the way it is, but regardless of their personal opinions (supporting a gay lifestyle or not), the general consensus is that being gay doesn’t matter, as long as the job is done correctly.

I think the fear, at least from those that I know that are severely homophobic, is that every gay man currently serving in the military has a closet full of pink feather boas and sequined mesh tops waiting to be busted out, that all of a sudden those who are gay will be hitting on people left and right, and “forcing” their feelings and such onto others. You will know longer be safe in that fox hole down range because OMG he’s staring at your ass instead of trying to get the job done. Well guess what — if he’s gay, he’s probably already taken a glance at your ass. And look — you’re still alive. I have known many, many gay men in my life, and trust me — those who DO own pink feather boa’s and sequined tops are far too girly to ever serve in the military.

The issue, however, is causing more of a debate between those in office then I think those it would actually affect, and the switching and whipping around of ideas and opinions is enough to make my head spin. So why do we care what Congressman Joe Blow in office feels about this? We all know that congress is full of double standards. How many preach moral and family values, but then cheat on their wives? John McCain, one of the loudest opposers of repealing DADT, has said in the past that the top military officials should be the ones to make the decisions, but recently has changed his tune saying they should be left out of it. It’s confusing. And honestly, who cares? Adm. Mike Mullen, the Chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff has said the 16-year-old policy needs to be repealed, and has vowed to take a good look at how it would effect our military before doing so. So how about we let him do his job, huh?

The Cons of Repealing DADT

But what about the con’s about repealing DADT? The biggest argument has been to not mess with the military — to do a “social experiment” — in the time of two wars. Isn’t that just an excuse, though? Aren’t we ALWAYS in some sort of conflict? The United States Army is essentially the police of the world, and we are always somewhere, doing something. So if not now, then when? Iraq is in the process of being phased out, and Afghanistan — well, we don’t really know when that is going to be over. There will never be a “good” time. So why not now?

Then there is always just people in general, and the dynamic of some of the people in the military. It’s no surprise that a large population of the military are born and raised red state residents. With this comes a typical stereotype that I hate to bring up, but have seen proven to be true more times than not. My personal fear, and this is why part of me believes that the repeal of DADT may not prove to be as good as we hope, is because there are a lot of idiots out there who would do something stupid and harm an innocent person just because they don’t agree with their lifestyle choices. Case in point, my husband, who is currently out-of-state on training, told me that because one of the guys in his training unit is “suspected” to be gay. To him, it’s no big deal, but to others it apparently was. Said soldier came back to his room one night to find a very derogatory word written on his door in shaving cream — it had been on for some time, and shaving cream has a way of taking paint/stain off of a door. Which means after he cleaned it up, he continued to have to look at it.

It’s those type of actions, and the ones that I fear that will be much worse, that scare me about a repeal. Because all it takes is one. 99.9% of services members may not have an issue with it, or may not act on disapproval. But its the loud ones — the ones who will treat them differently because all of a sudden they are “out,” or say crude things, or even worse, physically hurt somebody — that scare me the most. I would hate to see a good person, who is just trying to serve their country and do right by what they believe in, and do their job. It’s disgusting, and it’s sad. But there are people out there who would do something. Something bad. And it’s that fear that makes me wonder if it’s a good time. However, my own counteraction to that argument is that there are ignorant, close-minded people out there NOT in the military. People are still burning crosses for Christ’s sake. People are ugly and mean. No matter what your job is.

I think, overall, the policy needs to go away. You’re uncomfortable if one of your soldiers brings a same-sex date to the dine in? Deal with it. I’m uncomfortable knowing that you sleep with a different woman every weekend, or that you’re cheating on your wife (which I have seen more times than I care to talk about).

You shouldn’t have to hide who you are. People should be allowed to be themselves. Whether you agree with their choices or not. It’s not up to us.

******* Update: August 20th, 2010 *******

Michelle Martin on NPR’s “Tell Me More” this week did two segments on DADT. One FOR the repeal, and one AGAINST the repeal. There were both excellently presented, and I definitely recommend that you all check them out.

In The Line Of Duty Or Discrimination? (Pr0-Repeal)

An Argument For Discrimination: DADT

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This was originally posted on April 10th, 2009; I was knee-deep into my husbands deployment at the time. This post has, for whatever reason, seen a lot of traffic lately so I thought I would resurface it. It also is something that I still feel to be very true. Husband & I are in this weird transition period where sometimes he’s here, sometimes he’s not, and even though he’s home we seem to be unable to plan anything because of his crazy schedule. Enjoy!

I had a conversation with one of my husbands long-time friends the other day, and we briefly talked about a lot of things husband related: his choice to re-enlist, why I don’t mind the Army or it’s lifestyle [anymore], how it grows on you, how his potential new career path in the military will have him deploying more, but for shorter amounts of time, and why we’re ok with that. At the end of this, she said something to me that struck a chord and made me twitch just a little.

“You’re so strong.”

Now, I know what her intentions were when she said that (and T, you know I love you!) and I know that she meant nothing but good things about my character when she said that to me. But in all honesty, I hate hearing that from other people.

Because the truth of the matter is that no, I’m not strong. I hate that my husband deploys. I hate that his life is on the line every single day. I hate that he’s away from me, and the only way we can continue our marriage is through phone calls, emails and gmail chat. I hate that we have essentially put US on hold for a year until he returns. And trust me when I say that I have my fair share of breakdowns when I miss him so much that my heart could explode. Strong? Definitely not. This is not a word that military spouses use with one another, because we all know the truth. None of us are really “strong.”

Independent? Now that’s a word I would use to describe me.

Now, I hope I don’t offend people here, and if I lose a few readers because what I’m going to say, than I’m apologizing up front. But I have never understood the spouses that are so dependant on their husbands (or wives if your wife is the one in the military, although it has been all wives that I deal with here!) that they put their entire life on hold for that entire deployment, whether it’s six months or a year, because they just can’t see life going on without them. I love my husband. So much. [See above.] But sitting in my empty house, night after night, crying about HOW MUCH I miss him, pining away and wasting my days … no thank you.

I simply don’t see the point. I look at it as, it is what it is. I knew before my husband and I got married that deployments would be a part of our lifestyle. Do I love that fact? Nope. But again, it is what it is. It does me NO GOOD to do all the things I mentioned in the last paragraph. I live my life. I work. I hang out with friends. I do all the things that I would do whether he was here or not, because what is the point of not? It certainly doesn’t make the time fly by any quicker. If anything, it just makes it go by slower. We own our house. We have dogs and a cat. This is where our lives are. Time does not stop just because my soldier is off fighting a war. Bitching and whining and complaining about it does not change the situation at hand, either. It does me no good.

And I think it’s safe to say [and Hubs, feel free to comment and correct me if I'm wrong] that he likes it this way. I’ve never been a super clingy person. I mean, I definitely have my moments, and I’ve broken down a couple of times after phone calls with him, because I didn’t want to end. But I think with me being who I am, and being so independent, it puts him at ease, he doesn’t have to worry about me. He knows that I’m not out doing things that I shouldn’t, but he also knows that I’m not sitting at home … waiting. Because that’s not healthy, either. I’m trying, a lot harder on the occasional bad day than on some, to make the best of the situation at hand. Because really, that’s all we can do.

That’s all I can do.

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Love Vigilantes

by Brittany on August 3, 2010

in Music

So, y’all know that I am a big music buff. LOVE music. If you have never heard of this band, Iron & Wine, you MUST must must check them out. It’s not really a band, per say. It’s really just one guy [who very oddly resembles Zach Galifianakis.]

But he is fabulous & I love love LOVE his music. Twilight fans, you my recognize him from this little diddy. Or if you are, perhaps, a fan of Garden State [one of the best movies EVER, & in which Iron & Wine forever won my heart] you may recognize this version of a Postal Service cover.

Seriously. Listen. It’s my new favorite. [even though it's a cover of  New Order song!]

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I Heart New York.

by Brittany on August 1, 2010

in Travel

Last weekend, I took off to NYC for a few days to hang with my mom. We had been planning this trip for a few months, and it was definitely a girls weekend. We ate well, did a TON of walking & caught three [THREE!] Broadway shows over the weekend.

Friday night, we got tickets to Memphis, which just won the Tony for best musical. It was awesome! A very heavy show, but worth every penny. Saturday I dragged her to see Mamma Mia! and I’m not going to lie — I was disappointed.  Maybe we just caught a bad show, but it was definitely less than mediocre.

But Sunday’s show — oh, blissful Broadway — was Promises, Promises. If you have not heard of it, it has Kristen Chenowith [hello ... MAJOR GIRL CRUSH.] and Sean Hayes [the guy who played Jack on Will & Grace].

It. Was. Fabulous.

FABULOUS!!!

Hands down, the best show of the weekend. It was light, funny & Sean Hayes blew both me & my mom out of the water. That man can SING his ass off. I was impressed. I know we both had a smile on our face the entire show. If you can make it to NYC, I definitely recommend seeing this show if you can. It was amazing.

Anyways — it was a great weekend. I posted some photos below for your enjoyment! Hey, did you all know that the Soup Nazi is back up & running again? Awesomesauce! We happened to be staying a few doors down from his shop, but he’s not open on Sundays, when we decided we wanted to try him out. Bummer. Also, you MUST check out the Union Square Farmer’s Market.  It was so cool to see such a major city be so supportive of local produce and hand crafted items.

I’ve been a horrible blogger lately, and an even suckier commenter. I finally logged into my google reader today and had, oh, about 1,000 blog posts to go through. So I’m getting there. I promise I will start commenting again! Until then, here are a few of my favorite shots from NYC. I will post the flickr link later today when I am doing going through and editing the rest of them. Enjoy!

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Eff You, MyCAA. [My Expanded Thoughts!]

by Brittany on July 21, 2010

in Military Wife

When I posted the previous blog yesterday, I was sort of hesitant about saying what I *really* felt about the new program. I saw the news, I did sort of a silent “hooray?” with emphasis on that big, fat question mark. We’re supposed to be excited that MyCAA is up & running again, right? And, and … helping military spouses work towards a career! Great! Right??!

And then I logged onto Twitter. Aaaaaand made my way around the blogosphere. And quickly realized that the rage I was trying to hold in was completely warranted and deserved to be let loose like a fiery beast.

For the past however many months, military spouses from far & wide have been patiently waiting for the MyCAA program to start back up again [*ahem* I was one of them. I was sort of looking into adding to my credentials!]. You all may remember that is was very abruptly shut down not too long ago because they couldn’t handle the enormous amounts of milspouses that came flocking forward, wanting to expand their education. $6,000 a year? HELL YEAH. Money that I can use towards a career & a bachelors degree or better? Even sweeter.

Oh, wait … brakes. The DoD did a really shitty job of researching how popular this program would be. I’m pretty sure they didn’t actually talk to any military spouses out there. If they did, they would have known. So major fail on the DoD’s side for not researching their new projects. But we already know that.

Their press release this week stated that they are merely trying to help the military spouses with the ”greatest need,” hench the new restrictions. Let’s break this down, just a little.  in my area, the difference in monthly pay/BAH between an E6 with 7 years of experience [*ahem* ... my husband] and an O1/O2 with two years of experience is a whopping $100 dollars, give or take a few bucks. But yet, they qualify. I don’t. Call me confused. What makes the wife of an O1/O2 more privileged, more “in need” than I would be [or anybody else in my situation?] How are they in greater need than a family in our rank band? Because they make a few bucks less every month?

This “let’s help some, but not help everybody, but claim that we’re doing EVERY. SINGLE. MILITARY SPOUSE. this greeeeeeat service” is total crap. It is not for the career-minded as they love to state. If they had done any research whatsoever into life in a military town for a spouse who actually wants to work, they would see that the job market is FLOODED. There are not enough jobs available for those who want to work. I have a friend who teaches three counties away because that was the closest teaching job she could get, and even then it took two years for her to find a job. And then there are people like Tucker, who had a fabulous job, who had a career & the education to go with it, who took a massive hit when they had to relocate because there was no job availability.

And I’m sorry. Earning a certification or a two-year associates degree is not a career. It is a stepping stone. Earning a four-year degree? [which, you could do, but no longer can under this program] That is working your way towards a career. And those of us who are on a TRUE career path? We struggle to find those jobs. It took me two and a half years and over 150 job applications to get to where I am now. And what happens when the inevitable happens, and we have to PCS? With my masters degree, I’m completely over-qualified for ANYTHING. I can’t get a job at a coffee shop if I wanted to. I happen to love my career, and love my job. I LOVE what I do. The DoD’s answer? Dummy yourself down. Get an associates degree! Then you’ll be good. But don’t ask us for help. Your husband is too high ranking.

By encouraging military spouses to reach for the bottom — to do the minimum, to not reach higher for your education — and by SUPPORTING this notion that military spouses should stay at the bottom, they are reinforcing ideas from 50 years ago. You’re not worth it. You don’t deserve a higher education. You don’t deserve a career. Make a little spending money to make yourself feel better, but you’re a military spouse. You should be cutting hair, and doing makeup. Plain and simple.

Let me just kick off my shoes, get knocked up & make sure that the house is clean and dinner is on the table by 6 p.m. I’ll be sure to be standing by the door in my apron to kiss you, honey, when you get home from work. Can I get you a drink? Would you like your slippers? Children — don’t bother daddy. He’s tired from a long, hard day at work.

Look, I get that there are other avenues to get your education, so before you bring that up — I know. TRUST me, I know. I have $80,000 in student loans that I will be paying off for the rest of my life to prove it. But my friend, Jessie, in the comments from the previous post, brought up a good point. Aren’t the lower income military families — the junior enlisted and such — the ones that are eligible for pell grants & such? Isn’t there already a lot of help out there for those who truly can’t afford college? And even though I am LUCKY enough to have found a job in my career field here at Bragg, and I bring in a substantial amount of income to our family, there is no way in hell I could afford to pay out of pocket for any sort of extra education.

And regardless, it’s the simple fact that you promised 136,000 Military Spouses this money, but then told 44,000 of them that their ambitions were too highand the DoD didn’t want to support that. Who knows how many of the other spouses out there will now be booted from the program because of their husbands rank? The DoD, because of their lack of research and their lack of concern, took something that could have been truly wonderful, truly supportive of military spouses, and took a huge crap on it. Way to go, DoD. Thanks for caring.

***** Authors Note: Thursday, July 22nd *****

I would just like to clarify that I am not taking a dig at stay at home spouses, spouses of lower enlisted ranks or lower officer ranks, or anybody who is HAPPY with their choices. If you chose to give up whatever you gave up, if you are happy with the way your life is, and you are totally fine with switching careers to make it work. Then good for you. Seriously. I absolutely do not have an issue with people that are happy with the choices that they have made in life.

However.

I love my husband. I also love having a career. And I think it’s pretty fucked up that as a military spouse, I am expected to choose one or the other. This is my own, PERSONAL opinion. I worked hard for what I have, for the education that I have, for the job that I have. And the message that I am hearing from the DoD is that what I want does not matter. That in order to do my part, I need to settle for something that THEY deem appropriate for this lifestyle.  I don’t want to be a medical tech, I don’t want to go to cosmetology school. If this works for you, and you are happy with this, than I have no problem whatsoever.

But I see way too many spouses who have to live in seperate states in order to keep up their career goals (To be perfectly honest? I WOULD be that spouse that lived elsewhere for the sake of my career. Because it is that important to me. Which probably makes me a horrible person.), too many spouses who have to settle for working in a boutique, or a coffee shop because that’s the only job they can get. And for those people that AREN’T happy with having to settle?? That’s who I’m fired up for. It’s my right, and it’s my opinion. So if you took any offense to anything that I said, my DEEPEST apologies. I am not any better, nor am I any worse than any of you who disagree with what I have to say, regardless of what your path in life is. And if that path is different than mine? I definitely don’t think any less of you.  But I have a right to my opinion, same as you. So, that’s all I have to say about that. :)

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MyCAA Up & Running (but with new rules)

July 20, 2010

Military OneSource has posted the new rules/regulations/qualifications for the “new & improved” MyCAA program. However, before you get all excited, from the looks of things it has some drastic changes. See for yourself: The Department of Defense has completed the program review and will be making the necessary adjustments to resume the MyCAA program beginning [...]

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Just a Quick Announcment/Whine Fest

July 19, 2010

I HATE THIS HEAT. I am telling you, people, it is way to fucking hot here for me!! I am a Pacific Northwestern girl, which means I am happy with 75-80 degree summers at the MAX. This 100 degree shit has Got. To. Go. I have been here for four years now, too, so you [...]

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