The Military Spouse: We owe them love, gratitude, respect

Photo Illustration by 45th Space Wing Public Affairs

Photo Illustration by 45th Space Wing Public Affairs

Our military spouses embody ideals we cherish: strength, loyalty, and commitment. They stand beside those who stand behind our flag, giving their all and making tremendous sacrifices. They shoulder the burdens of countless moves and stressful deployments, and they uphold their end of the bargain. On Military Spouse Appreciation Day, we celebrate the force behind the force and show these homefront heroes the full support of a grateful Nation.  (U.S. Air Force graphic by James Rainier) (Information used is from Presidential Proclamation -- Military Spouse Appreciation Day)

Our military spouses embody ideals we cherish: strength, loyalty, and commitment. They stand beside those who stand behind our flag, giving their all and making tremendous sacrifices. They shoulder the burdens of countless moves and stressful deployments, and they uphold their end of the bargain. On Military Spouse Appreciation Day, we celebrate the force behind the force and show these homefront heroes the full support of a grateful Nation. (U.S. Air Force graphic by James Rainier) (Information used is from Presidential Proclamation -- Military Spouse Appreciation Day)

Graphic by the 45th Force Support Squadron

Graphic by the 45th Force Support Squadron

PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- While all military observances carry great importance, I can't think of any more fitting - and more justified - than the one we will officially celebrate May 8.

That's when we'll join hands with military installations all around the world celebrating Military Spouse Appreciation Day here at Team Patrick-Cape.

It would be practically impossible to put into words how much our Air Force cherishes and respects our military spouses, both those serving now and those who did in the past.

They may not have raised their right hand and sworn to protect and defend the constitution but their commitments are no less real, their zeal no less enthusiastic, and their contributions are no less vital.

In the Air Force, we like to think we're pretty good at contingency planning, but we have nothing on our spouses when it comes to adaptation.

They are proven experts at dealing with everything that gets tossed their way -- whether it be rapid deployments, a seemingly last-minute PCS move to who-knows-where, or a half dozen unexpected guests showing up at the dinner table.

Spouses can keep a home, balance the family finances, coach a T-Ball game, help with homework and work a full-time job.

Many of our spouses are active duty or reserve Airmen. These dual military couples do double duty for their country, and they do remarkable things on a daily basis.

All spouses are professional jugglers, even when they run out of hands.

Let's be crystal clear on this: military spouses stand behind no service member. They stand alongside each of us, making our jobs and our personal lives more fulfilling.

They prove on a daily basis that one does not need to wear a uniform, either to serve or to persevere.

And they do both so exceedingly well. 

We owe our military spouses so much more than one day in their honor. We owe them our daily gratitude and love. Even more, we owe them our respect.

We're just incredibly thankful we have them in our corner.

So from Eddie and myself, from the bottom of our hearts:  thank you, spouses -- to each and every one of you.

Stay Focused, Sharks!  And go thank a spouse right now, especially yours!