'SpouseBUZZ Live' brings laughter to Nehelani
November 22, 2010
SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Nearly 300 military spouses shared laughter and stories at the "SpouseBUZZ Live" event, Nov. 8, here, at the Nehelani.
SpouseBUZZ, a virtual military spouse support group, travels to different military bases four times a year. This year was the first in Hawaii.
The day began with a panel comprised of military spouses who blog at SpouseBUZZ.com. Entitled "A humorous look at the military spouse experience," the discussion focused on deployments and military life in general.
The stories ranged from run-ins with a mother-in-law to a husband's first experience with laundry gone awry. With a mixture of humor and, at times, a touch of sadness, the common thread running through these anecdotes was resiliency. The message from panelists to the audience was to choose "better" over "bitter."
"You can't choose what gets thrown at you, but you can choose how you react," said Ruthie A., a SpouseBuZZ blogger known as "airforcewife." "For instance, I would not have chosen for my Russian mother-in-law to lose her mind when my husband was in Afghanistan.
"That was really not a high point, but I can choose to make fun of her at every SpouseBUZZ live event we go to," airforcewife joked. "There are people all over the United States that know my mother-in-law is insane."
"There are things that you don't have control over when your spouse is in the military," she said. "You can spend a lot of time fighting against it, or you can kind of figure it out, and your life is a lot easier."
The lone male panel member who blogs as "MaintenanceToadOne" is a retired Air Force colonel whose active duty spouse who has been deployed. He remarked that he's gotten a dose of reality from his fellow SpouseBUZZ bloggers as to what life is really like for the spouse at home during deployment.
"If I knew then what I know now," he told the audience, laughing.
Maintaining the panel's humorous tone, he regaled the audience with stories of washing his spouse's belongings that were dry-clean-only garments. The audience laughed with recognition.
The panel solicited stories and advice from the audience that would be appropriate for a theoretical book aimed at new military spouses.
One spouse recommended placing a father's worn and unwashed T-shirt in a newborn's crib. She said that when her husband, a new father who had never met his son, returned home, the baby went right to him "because the baby recognized the scent."
Other event activities included a buffet lunch, drawings for prizes and an appearance by Mollie Gross, a military spouse comedian.
View more photos on <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/usag-hi/sets/72157625259223967/with/5172758891/">Flickr</a>.