Wup, wup, wup, wup, wup, WUP, WUP,
The weary warrior’s heart expectantly races as the once dull thuds become
increasingly louder. She surveys the airspace above, locates the helicopter
that smoothly descends downward to the earth with the supplies she desperately
needs. She takes the supplies and eagerly cracks the wooden crate open. Finally, supplies to complete my mission!
Eagerly she rummages through the
packaging where she digs out her supplies: bowling pins, a disco ball, water skis and a clown costume. What is this? Why’d my team even put the
helicopter in the air? This stuff doesn’t help me at all…it’s pretty bad if
spam would be more useful and welcome at this point!
Here are some unhelpful things my
warrior friends Kim, Missy and Linda said did NOT help them while their spouses
were on long term deployments.
Here’s some help in the
“try-not-to-do’s” when supporting a weary warrior, who’s left to defend her
home front alone. Here’s the “low
five” your friend just might not need!
Don’t leave your buddy behind.
“Let me know if
you need something” or “I’ll pray for you” are often overused phrases used to
let the messenger feel good about herself while the warrior is left
hanging! Instead of saying you’ll
pray (which you may or may not actually do), pray with her right then and
there. Missy said, “Praying for me
and my family over the phone touched my heart”.
Don’t ask her to watch your platoon too. One platoon’s enough in war time!
A friend that you’ve felt
comfortable swapping childcare with doesn’t have the same stamina while in
battle. Consider, just while the
spouse is deployed, to allow a one way child care situation to flow.
Don’t compare battle scars.
On the battlefield
everyone is busy, but the ones on the
front line, in particular, have their hands most full! Linda provided, “I’ve been meaning to
call you but we are so busy” is hurtful as she felt quite busy herself. In the same respect, don’t try to
compare your husband’s week long business trip to your friend’s six month (or more!)
deployment. It’s like comparing a
boot blister to a land mine amputation!
forget your compass. Be specific about the direction of your help.
Instead of a wide
offer, be specific about the direction of your help. Kim (who had her third son
while her husband was deployed) said the following examples would have been a
tremendous help: “It must be hard
to get any yard work done when you have to keep an eye on the kids. Can I cut
the grass for you?” or, “I noticed that school gets out during your baby’s
naptime. Can I pick up your child
for you/meet them at the bus stop?”
5. Don’t forget that war is hairy
Don’t let your
friend get to her wits end or have too many split ends! Keep an eye out on your
warrior friend. If she’s looking
“follicular challenged” offer to watch her kids so she can get her hair
cut/colored. When she picks her
kids back up, have them already fed or prepare a dinner to bless her with.
“A solider signs up to join the fight, a warrior stays until
it is finished.”[i]
friend finish strong, and stay by her side until her battle is finished!
 Holly Wagner, Warrior Chicks,
(Ventura, CA: Regal Books, 2007), p. 20.
Wagner, Warrior Chicks
, (Ventura, CA:
Regal Books, 2007), p. 20.