Everyone Wants To Thank Our Troops, But I Sacrificed Myself For His Military Career

Maria Alvarez
Maria Alvarez

I love him more than I ever thought I could feel for someone, anyone. He makes me never want to leave his side. I want to move in with him, sometime, now, later, sometime. I can’t stop touching him, kissing him, thinking about him and how he makes me so happy. I become happier when I see that he is content to be with me too. I want to live with him so that every morning I can roll over and see his beautiful face. I want to live with him so I can touch his beautiful body whenever I please. I want to cook for him, and I want him to cook for me. I want to be with him.

We are not the same people. We don’t have the same interests. He has no passions, no distinctive qualities, nothing outside the army. The army is him and he is the army. I don’t even like the army.

They’re too bureaucratic, overbearing, crude, harsh. That’s just the environment. The culture of the army is gruff, emotionless, and old-fashioned. I am finding myself to be more and more a feminist; boys and men in the army look down on women, expect the gender-stereotype, and have an overall negative view on women.

Yes, not all women cheat on their significant others while they are deployed or stationed elsewhere. A single sentence from him can wrap this up: He’s been divorced three times because his wives couldn’t handle him being gone all the time. Looking at this sentence, I see a bias against the women. “They’re supposed to be (army) strong and be there for him all the time because look he had to go and fight with his life for his country.” What about her, and her, and her? Those women got married because they wanted to be with that man for the rest of their lives. Being married by yourself is wrong, and they had every right to stand up for themselves.

Yes, soldiers have obligations that take them away from home.

Their job requires them to shoot someone or another, or jump out of this or that.

What about the woman? Is this not the modern day and age, where women and men are the closest to equality than ever before? I want to have my life, my job, my family. Is it so bad to want that? He wants to make the army a career. He wants to make General. He tells me “We’ll get through this hump.” Only it’s not a hump, it’s a plateau. It doesn’t get easier, because it never ends.

In a reversed situation, let’s say a man and woman marry. Her job takes her away across the world for nine months out of the year, every year for five years. She has a child while she’s at home, and she leaves that child at home for the father to take care of it by himself. On top of that, her company requires her to move around to shitty towns across the United States every two years, so for six months every two years she’s at home in the shitty town. Now the man would protest; he would say “what about the job I want? What about my life, my marriage, my goals, dreams, and aspirations?” No one, I fear, would say to him: this is the life of a husband married to a working man, suck it up, she’s doing her job.

During the times when I want to convince myself that we can do it, we can stick together, I can live with him and move around with him and be home alone most of the time when he’s off doing God knows what, I remember my old self. This old self is not that old, she only ceased to exist when I met my man. I wanted to do the impossible, be the greatest. I had dreams and visions for myself. I wanted to go to Washington DC and change the world. I wanted to move to Paris, perfect my French, and be free. Live in a small studio and live on a meager salary and live in my NYC apartment. I wanted to do it all, and I felt it was within grasp.

Staying with him means giving up everything that is me.

There would be no Paris, because I would be moving around with him.

There would be no career in Washington because I would be moving from base to base with him.

There would be no dream job other than the ones on base, because I’d be just another significant other of a U.S. Army soldier.

I love him. I love him so much. But I love myself more.

I’ll stay with him through the summer, and until I earn my degree from college. We talked about plans after I graduate; about me moving in with him, or rather, me living at his permanent address. Because I wouldn’t be moving in with him at all, I’d simply be moving. I wouldn’t be cooking for him, because I’d only be cooking for myself. I wouldn’t be sleeping with him, because the other side of the bed would be cold. I wouldn’t be in a loving relationship with him, because I’d be in a lonely relationship by myself. TC mark

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