Today I am so excited to collaborate with Julia from JuliaAuburn.com!
She and I have a lot of things in common and after talking, we decided to do a short Q&A about some of our similarities and differences. Julia is a military wife and I thought I would ask her some questions about the lifestyle she took on after getting married to the man of her dreams last year!
Let’s get started!
Tell me a little about yourself -how old are you, where you live + what your blog is about + how long you’ve been blogging for?
My name is Julie Martinez and I am 23 years old. I graduated this past December with my Bachelors of Science in Agricultural Communications (and no, I don’t talk to cows for a living.) I am from Sweet Home Alabama, but for the past year I’ve been living in El Paso, Texas. I have been blogging at JuliaAuburn.com since May of 2018 (I’m still a newbie!) where I mostly write about my day to day life as a Christian and a military spouse living far from home. Oh and my middle name is Auburn, hence the name of my website, but I also happened to graduate from Auburn University.
How long have you been married & how did you meet your spouse?
My husband and I met in 2015 at a square dance at the church I went to in college. We ended up being partners in the same square and obviously hit it off right away! We just celebrated one year of marriage on June 17th!
What are the best parts about being a military family?
There are definite pro’s and con’s to being a military family, but by far my favorite thing is getting to travel to new places! We currently live in a part of the country I never even expected to visit, much less live in. We are always quick to take advantage of any opportunity we get to get out of the house and explore new places nearby, whether it’s just for a day, or for a whole weekend.
What are the worst parts about being a (military/law enforcement) family?
There are a lot of well known sacrifices that military members make, so I’ll try not to regurgitate all of that here, but there are also a lot of not-so-well-known sacrifices that military families make daily. One of those things is simply an inconsistent work schedule – this can be great when it allows for long weekends, but it’s not so great when it amounts to 12+ hour work days 5-6 days a week for the better part of 6 months. The training schedule can also be pretty intense. Recently, my husband was in the field for training for 6 weeks straight.
How is your job as a wife to military/law enforcement different than other wives?
A lot of more traditional hierarchies still exist in military life and most people don’t realize that extends to families as well. For example, if your husband is in a position of authority in a company/battalion/brigade/etc, you are expected to take leadership roles for family organizations and events. This can be helpful, by having a spouse of a higher ranking officer helping to plan family events. But it can also be overwhelming because it really can amount to a part time job that you are expected to perform just by being married to someone in a certain rank and position. Luckily, I’m not to that point yet, but I have been easing my way into the world of military family organizations, so I have an idea of what is to come.
Did you ever think you’d marry someone in the military?
Nope! I honestly didn’t know very many people in the military before meeting my husband. I’ve always respected military members a lot – but I just didn’t picture my life going that way because I had no personal frame of reference for being a military spouse.
But I’m a year into it and it has been the most fun adventure so far!
What’s the most common misconception about military wives?
I think a lot of people picture military spouses as being super intense. Before I got married, I also heard several stereotypes that military wives are standoff-ish and clique-y. But these things have not been the case at all! Most of the military spouses I’ve met are super down to earth and always down to meet new friends. It’s true that there are somethings that only other military spouses will be able to relate to, but I haven’t run into any cliques that aren’t open to meeting other types of people.
What’s the best advice you have for other military spouses?
Don’t be afraid to try new things. Moving far away from home is practically inevitable if you’re around the military for very long, so learning to put yourself out there is so important. You may be nervous visiting a new church, or gym, or club, but it’s so worth it in the end. Be open minded and willing to build friendships with people that are totally different from you. No matter how short a time you live in one place, the friendships you make in a short time can still make a huge impact on the rest of your life.
How have you changed since being a military wife?
I’ve always been a pretty easy going person, but there is nothing like military life to teach you to be flexible in all areas of your life. As a wife, I’ve learned to be more patient and understanding of my husband’s stressful work environment. I’ve learned to let go of my expectations, because each day truly is different from the previous one. In short, I have learned a lot about myself.
Any advice for people dating military members?
Get ready! Haha, but in all seriousness, the military life is full of ups and downs. Be prepared for time apart, long workdays, stressful work environments, and constant changes. You may think you have a perfect plan for your future together, but the military will throw every wrench in your plans that it can. But if you’re willing to make the sacrifices, the rewards can definitely outweigh the disadvantages. Seek God’s will for your relationship, and be committed to following that. Loving someone well is hard work, but it is such a precious thing.
Again, don’t forget to check out her blog!