25 January 2012

" Remember that silence can sometimes be the best answer. " - Dalai Lama

Well haven't I been riding the slack train for far to long! it's been 2 weeks since I have shared my amazing-ness with you all...how rude of me...I do apologise!

SO! what do I have to write about today? well nothing overly exciting...but still something is better than nothing right??

While sitting here checking out FB talking to some friends I got to thinking about said friends, then about friendship in itself which then led me to of course friendships within Army life. Even just Defence life in general, I figure the same thing occurs with partners in other services and even between services. I have friends that are RAAF wives and Navy wives also, and met them through Facebook!

Whenever I mention my FB Defence wife friends to my husband it usually goes along these lines...

Me - One of my friends blah blah blah....

Him - What friend?

Me - One of my Defence wife friends on Facebook...

Him - OH! one of your 60yr old-pedophile- axe murderer-friends? you do realise that they are not real friends?!

Me - ah, yes they are!


Him - *rolls eyes* O.K :S


So anyways...about these friendships...Some of the lovely ladies I have had as facebook friends for around 3-4 years...they probably know more about me and my life than friends I have had in my life for years. And no its not because I share my entire life on FB, rather because if I do happen to write something about being frustrated or annoyed or angry they are the first ones to ask if I am ok or what can they do to help...They understand, to an extent what I am going through because they are in similar situations themselves. If I write about something awesome, or that I am happy about...they are the first to 'like' it...or tell me how great it is, or how happy for me they are. This to me is what real friendship is about. You don't have to see people in person to be their friend, you don't have to have met someone in person to be a supportive caring friend.

I have met some of these women in person and I am so grateful I have. Partly to prove to the husband that they were not 60yr old-pedophile-axe-murderers! And mostly because, well turns out they really are bloody awesome chicks! Now if it wasn't for Facebook alot of these people I would never have even crossed paths with as we have never been posted to the same location. Or if we have been in the same location at one time or another, we never met being our husbands are in different units it is very rare to meet wifes/girlfriends outside of your husbands unit. (unless your the playgroup kind of person, which I am not) So yay for Social Media!!

Now on the other end of this awesomeness is some shitness (yes shitness is now a word... I just invented it) unfortunately with the amazing friendships that come with Defence Life and Facebook, there is also the not so amazing people. I am sure most of you have come across it at one point or another. This part is the downside to social media...or really just Facebook. As much as I love it (sshhh don't tell anyone) Things were alot less dramatic without it. I have seen SO much drama in 'support' groups it's not funny. I have been in a few over the years and have witnessed some crazy antics. Mostly I laugh, because really some of these women take life/FB WAY to seriously and complain about the most inane stuff! I have read stuff about people bitching about admins and being removed from groups, yes group's' plural...Then I wonder, well really if you have been removed from multiple groups do you not think that maybe your behaviour is the problem, not the actual admin...LOL seems only natural to me...I have also seen people complain about not only having to deal with having a husband deployed and all the other issues in their lives but also having to deal with all the bitching in FB groups...Um newsflash, no you don't...no one makes you be in FB groups, no one makes you get involved in drama...If you have so much other stuff to deal with in your life, why are you bothering getting involved...get of FB if you find the drama stuff such an issue. It is actually easier to ignore posts/people you don't agree with or are not interested in rather than take the time to comment/post about in a negative way. The irony in this though is they then go to another group and start bitching about other people! And again I sit there thinking seriously!?! Do you not see anything wrong with what you have just done! I can not be the only person seeing this can I???

I think I have said it before that as big as the Defence Force is, it is also just as small, especially on FB.
Check out another awesome Army wife's post on the same topic here. (nb. We are friends, before anyone wants to come up with some insane reasoning behind us both writing about a similar topic...it is just one of those awesome moments between awesome people that we just happen to be thinking along the same lines!)

While sure you may have a couple of people that might comment agreeing with your bitching, there are more than likely alot more that are quietly not agreeing...just because people don't comment or post does not mean they are not there reading.

It really is a shame that certain people can be so darn nasty. Especially those that have this defence life in common. It is completely ok to not agree with other people. Not all people that disagree are being nasty. They just have a difference of opinion. What is so wrong with that. How extremely boring would the world be if everyone agreed about everything all the time! People are either just way to sensitive or just extremely bitter. I believe in Karma. Strongly. So these people that go out of their way to bad mouth others will have their day/s. Others will eventually figure them out and like my friend wrote in her post they are making their own lonely beds to lie in this lifestyle.

The people I find that are the saddest of them all are the bandwagon passengers, these are the people that actually have no idea who it is the nasties are bitching about yet add their 2 cents worth anyways or they do know them by name but have never communicated with the person themselves...sometimes I want to ask why? why are you jumping on this bandwagon when by your comments it is clear you don't even know exactly what it is they are talking about, but I don't really want to get involved, and mostly I don't know either and don't really want to know, so when I see the bitching I sit back in amazement watching it unfold and watching the bandwagon passengers pretty much put a target on themselves, alienating themselves from making new friends with normal people. Sometimes the groups are like a terrible train wreck...you know you shouldn't look but you just can't help watching.

Best advice I have is be careful who it is you are making friends with. My amazing Defence friends that I have met on Facebook are proof that there are some awesome wives out there. But the High School antics in groups also proves that there are also a few not so awesome ones...Luckily they are few, and really if you pay attention, it's not hard to figure out who they are...Just remember that when you jump on the bandwagon of the people that are bitching about others, think about what they are then possibly saying to others about YOU!

Written in the wee hours of this morning, this post was brought you by our friends at James B. Beam Distilling Co. only being published right now due to my still having the sense enough to wait till today to proof read and make sure I didn't get too ranty!.....still not entirely convinced it made much difference though!


07 January 2012

"OPSEC"....OPwhat??!!

I've been around a while. Living the Army life with the Husband for over 10 years. Had friends before that with husbands in the Army etc. Never in any of that time, not even anytime during my husbands deployments have I come across the term "OPSEC", and rightly so, I'm NOT the one IN the Army. I'm NOT the one that goes out on Operations. It wasn't until probably the last 2 years in some new Facebook 'support' groups for Defence wives and girlfriends did it start popping up. I have been in one particular group for over 4 years and nothing. However the extent that this term is thrown around these days absolutely ASTOUNDS me! why on earth do wives and girlfriends find it so necessary to constantly be bringing this term into a post or conversation?

For starters, there is no actual OPSEC document relating to wives that says 'rule 1. don't do this,' 'rule 2. don't do that.'* OPSEC is 'Operational Security.' If you know anything about OPSEC then your defence member other half is the one that has breeched OPSEC!. In the grand scheme of the ADF it has NOTHING to do with you as a wife or partner. If you ask anyone to link you to specifics you'll find they link you to something from the US. Last time I checked we were Australian, not American.

Secondly, why are wives and girlfriends even discussing anything that warrants the OPSEC nazi to rear her ugly head and, to quote a very good friend, throw in a sickly polite "just be mindful of OPSEC rules ladies :)"
You should already know what you can and can't post about from your husbands/boyfriends....and if for some really strange reason he has not had the conversation with you about this then really commonsense should kick in and tell you that you should not be telling anyone about his current or upcoming deployment ANYWHERE online, closed group or not. Even your personal profile.

Operational Security is just that, about operations. It is not about what corp or unit your partner is in and certainly has no relation to his/her rank. Certain units of course, for security reasons can not be discussed by anyone that is apart of them, though any wife that runs her mouth about being part of those units is probably on her way to being divorced. Mentioning your partners Unit is not a violation of anything (except as previously stated about certain units). If an admin of a Facebook group says you can't mention it then they are more than like one of said OPSEC nazi's. The Corp thing usually just comes down to Grunts Vs Pogues. And occasionally particular units in the same corps don't particularly like each other either, which is a whole other story that really has nothing to do with wives anyways. So really you don't need to get all argumentative over it in a FB group. I find nothing wrong with asking what unit someones partner is in if there is a likely chance that it may be the same as yours partners and they might even end up knowing each other which then makes it much easier to make new friends! unless the husbands don't like each other....awwwwkwarrrrd!

This then leads to the rank thing. There is nothing actually wrong with mentioning what rank your partner is. Unless you are mentioning it to big note yourself, these women are supposedly known as 'rank wearers', which to be honest I have never come across myself and really rather despise the term. I truly believe it is talked about more than it actually happens! and you will also find those that are constantly going on about 'rank wearing' are those whose partners don't actually have any rank, but when they do get it those wives will more than likely be the ones that turn into the mythological 'rank wearing creature.'  The rank thing, I have found in discussions usually is an ORs (other ranks) and Officers thing. The boys have their reasons for this for exactly the reason that they are the ones that live it. I also don't find anything wrong with asking someone that you are making friends with what rank their hubby is, he maybe the same rank as yours and you might find yourself in the same location and at the same events! (ie. dining in nights, they are usually the only rank specific events) much better to go to them knowing that you know someone else, especially if you are new to a location. So again another topic that is not a security risk and one wives should not be getting all argumentative over.

SO! If someone gets their nose out of joint because you mentioned a Corp, Unit or rank you are not doing anything wrong! (again except for the certain units as previously stated) it is their own issue that they need to get over. Just don't talk about O/S deployments in detail and you don't have a problem.

What it really comes down to when talking on FB to a group of 400-800 women that mostly you have never met before is not worrying about whether you are breaking the rules of some fictional document, rather what you really should be worried about or thinking about is "will my husband really appreciate me talking about him and his job to all these strangers?" you'll probably find the answer is "Hell, NO!" Though of course you are well within your wifely duties to rant about the fact he has just come back from 2 weeks out bush and has dumped his stinky cams on the floor for you to pick up and wash. Or has spent the majority of his leave carving out a nice arse dent in the lounge while watching episode after episode of American Dad or Family Guy or playing the playstation/Xbox! These kinds of discussions are highly encouraged in order to save your sanity and the likelihood of you committing murder.

P.S feel free to rant away on my Facebook page if you want! :D you can find it by clicking right.............HERE!

*I am more than happy to be corrected if I am wrong, I have searched and asked particular people and am yet to come across such a document. Link me to it if it exists and I will stand corrected!

02 January 2012

Change your habits...

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and all that jazz....

So a new year begins....hmmm any new years resolutions...I thought about it and started with the usual lose a few kilos, get fit...haha the same one everyone makes every year. I thought about some realistic ones (not that the weight/fit thing isn't realistic. Just requires more will power) and thought you know what why do I need to? why do I need to NOW?! There are a few little things I want to achieve, sure. Though why do I need the excuse of a new year to do it. I have realised while thinking about writing this post that we shouldn't need an excuse such as a new year to change things in our lives. If you really want to change yourself then do it. If you really want to do something, then do it. I have watched a couple of different TV series over the past couple of weeks and some things that were said really clicked with me. The first saying being "I am what time and circumstance made me" to an extent I very much believe this, the extent being that I also believe we choose to be who we are also. I am a huge believer in everything happens for a reason and the things that happen are due to the choices we make. So being in a particular place and time making the choices that we do is what leads us then to the next time, place and choice. Yes, I can hear some of you saying but this happened to me out of my control or that happened to me and I didn't choose it. These things I just put down to lifes little mysteries, while we may never know the reason for everything that happens to us there is always one and it is always just another part of life that we need to just get through and learn from.
So this brings me to the next one. "Change your habits" If you don't like the way your life is going, the crappy things that seem to recycle in your life all the time. Change your habits. This is another realisation that I had. The same crap keeps happening because I keep doing the same things or keep letting certain things get to me. A minor example would be, "I keep sleeping in till almost midday losing most of the day because I keep staying up till 3am". So that sounds like a habit that is an easy one to change, just go to bed earlier. But those first couple of nights wont be easy, wont be able to sleep straight away on account of not being tired yet. The first few days wont be easy either. Getting up earlier and not having as much sleep the night before will make you tired during the day. So as easy as it sound to 'just go to bed earlier' your body still needs to be retrained to a new habit. The smallest things you want to change will not be as easy as you think. BUT does not mean you should just give up! and there lies another habit to change....everything is connected to the next something.

Wow that was a little bit of a self-help-esque, rant! The point is you don't need an excuse like a new year to do these things! just make the decision and do it! So this is my resolution, not new year resolution. It's just a resolution to start. I am sure things will happen during the year that need to change or new things I want to start. And then those will become my resolutions also, because I want things to change at that time. Not because it's a new year, not because old traditions says I should, but because it really is something i want to do or change at that moment!

So off you go!...Go make a change!