41 Things Military Families Are Thankful For in 2016

“What are YOU thankful for?”

I’ve been asked this a few times. Many times in fact. So have you. But this time I’m going to stop and truly think about my answer.

I’m going to dig a bit deeper than merely stating the practice can-do answer. That’s too generic for a life like ours, right?Ok, here goes:

I am truly thankful for last minute TDY orders where my husband will be gone a few days/weeks. I can be lazy and make Ramen instead of Lasagna and then binge on the newest horror movies on Netflix. That sounds awful, I know, but when my husband IS home, I am doing my best to be ‘present’ because he deserves my attention, and I deserve his. (Besides, he hates scary movies anyway!) The gratitude I feel for moments apart make me feel even more grateful for moments together.

I decided to poll some of our fellow mil-spouses to find out what THEY were thankful for and they came armed and at the ready! You’ll probably identify with at LEAST one of these, but I’m betting you’ll be nodding your head at most of them! If you feel like sharing what YOU’RE thankful for, we would love to hear it!

I’m thankful my friends don’t care if I have hairy legs when my husband is gone on deployment!  –Anonymous

I am thankful for neighbors and friends who take other spouses under their wings while their service member is deployed. Especially during the holiday times when sometimes you are too far away from home. I’m thankful for the strong friendships that it creates. –Emily M.

Today, I am especially thankful for the strength and resiliency that our community and our country shows in the face of challenge. –Michelle A.

I’m thankful for the travel opportunities that the Marine Corps gives us. It opens your mind to other cultures.  -Adeline M.

While I complain about my children misbehaving, they have kept me busy and going (during recruiting duty) and for that I am more than grateful. –Joyeslin B.

I’m thankful for strangers who allow me to put them down as my emergency contact when we move to a new location. –Rebecca R-H.

I’m 100% thankful for Marine Corps Family Team Building and their classes like Hearts Apart (deployment support group) because through them I was able to form amazing friendships that will last a life time! –Jamie H.

I’m thankful that the military is progressing more quickly with the acceptance of our LGBTQ family members.  The family dynamics may not look the same, but they serve just the same! –Anonymous

I am thankful for my daughters. Especially my oldest for defending a little boy with a disability from bullying and the great work she does at school to help. –Jessica A.

I am thankful for the health care that the military has provided my family. Without it my son (who had an immense amount of medical issues and almost died several times) would have left us with several hundreds of thousands of medical bills. –Catherine M.

I’m thankful for the Marine Corps for bringing not only my family together but many of my friends as well. Without the Corps, I would not have my parents, husband, and the friends I have today. –Theresa N.

I’m thankful for my Military Spouse of the Yearfamily. Every day I connect with a SOY who positively changes a little part of me. These spouses share so much light and shiny happiness. –Susan R.

I am also thankful for the extra Halloween candy that I stashed in the basement freezer. –Michelle A.

I am thankful for Murphy, and clueless neighbors, and people who say stupid things with good intentions. I am thankful for all that I have lost and all that I’ve cried over as much as I’m grateful for all I’ve gained. Because in the process, I found ME. I found my strength and with it, my ability to help others find theirs. –Randi C.

I am so thankful for the incredible opportunities our military lifestyle allows us. I am thankful for the challenges we face that in the end, make us stronger. –Lindsay B.

I am so grateful for technology so that our little ones can know Daddy and he can see them even when he is gone for a year right now! –Roxanna H.

I’m thankful for all the regular things, like family and friends, health happiness and security. But this year I am especially thankful for active military spouses! Without you, I would feel like a lone banner flapping in the wind, with no inputs and feedback. Ya’ll make me feel useful and not alone, and that I cherish above all this year! –Dave E.