Dear Military Mamas (Or Anyone Creating “Home” in a Temporary Place)

military family

Dear Military Mamas, Albuquerque is your home too.

At least for now, right? I have been a military wife for 5.5 years now and have spent 4.5 of those years in Albuquerque. And I’m just now realizing this city is my city too. A lot of my friends who were raised as military kids never call a specific place home, and I can see why. Every place kind of feels like you’re just passing through, but what if we saw each new place as home? How different would we live?

I spent my first 3.5 years here living with the “just passing through” mindset, and it kept me from so much. Living like that kept me from getting to know this beautiful city and all it has to offer. Making the decision to create “home” in a temporary place can be scary, but it is worth it. There is so much to offer with each new place we will live, and we will never regret the memories we make with our families, even in a temporary home.

Here are a few things I have started doing to make this city feel like it is home.

  1. Get off base. When we live on base, shop on base, go to parks on base, etc, the base becomes the local city. This keeps us from engaging with locals and experiencing the local culture. I am so grateful for the community base provides, but the city can have so much to offer too. Albuquerque has so many fun parks, zoos, shopping centers, local restaurants, and so much more. The history, the mountains, the Bosque, they are all so beautiful and unique to this city.
  2. Plug in! Getting off base is just the first step, actually plugging in to the local community is so much more fun than you think. Each place you move to is so unique, and the more you engage with the local community, the more it starts to feel like your community. Community is so essential to a place feeling like home.
  3. Be present. Even though some of us are just passing through Albuquerque, we can still be present. Stop and smell the green chile. Enjoy the live music. Watch a musical at Popejoy. Be present. One day you will move on to the next place, and you don’t want to regret missing out on all this place has to offer.

It can be so hard to adjust to each new place, especially when you have kids. Sometimes the longing to be with family can be overwhelming and make this place feel even less like home. But there is a family here, waiting for you to join them, even if just for a moment.

Military mamas, this is your city too.

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