Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Creative Writing Piece: Madly DC :Shattered Glass

Madly DC: Shattered Glass

Click-Clack-Click-Clack was the sound of Aislinn's royal blue designer heels clicking on the pavement as she heads down Connecticut Avenue. The sun shined brightly and the sky was a clear blue. It was hot and humid, somewhere around here was suppose to be the meeting place where her parents wanted to introduce her to her future. A lawyer friend of theirs who's son happens to be single, rich and interested in politics. Not exactly an arranged marriage but close enough. Her mother would pop one of the pearls of her Chanel suit if she missed this meeting. She runs her hand over her head making sure her hair is smooth and in place going into perfect bun.

“Hello pretty lady, would you like to come in and try some of our fare?” A deep voice breaks her concentration. Aislinn blinks and glances at a man dressed in dark slacks and a coat with tails. A top hat cover his dark black curls. He smiles at her. She glances at the building he's standing in front of, the Madhatter. That’s kinda of peculiar name for a eatery she ponders in her mind.

“The samples are free” His smile widens “Just a little bite?”

Aislinn glances at her watch and sighs shaking her head and turns to take a step a way“I'm running late, I am sorry”

Her Blackberry vibrated in her jean pocket signaling a text message. She pulls it out and glances at the tiny screen a picture message from her sister Clara stating she was already there and had a picture of Aislinn's future beloved. Smiling from the screen was a guy with dark green eyes and pimples.-Can you even get pimples past high school?-She thought. His hair looked horrible and he wore the thickest pair of glasses and had an over bite. He was completely gross looking and Aislinn usually wasn't one to judge off looks only but he already had a cocktail sauce stain on his shirt from the shrimp he was holding in the picture.

“3 courses free to try. One time deal” The top hatted figure watches her.

Aislinn's stomach growls in protest as she tries to continue on. You're already late she reminds herself. But you're stomach is hungry. Your mother would be mad if you're late. But she is setting you up with a toad. Clara could have this rich sparkling diamond in the rough. Plus sometimes you just have to follow your heart through your stomach and away from the dumpy looking rich man your mother chooses to set you up with.

“Fine” She sighs and walks through the glass doors of the building. A melodic classical piece is playing in the background as her heels hit soft plush carpet. The walls were covered with a green paisley print. She takes a seat at the first table and realizes shes the only person here.

“Sir?” She looks around. Maybe this was a mistake. She notices an empty bar with a figure in a vest and white shirt facing away from her. “ Hey do you know where the man outside went? Or a server?”

The man remained silent.

-Weird- Aislinn thought. “Um..Hello?”

“Good Day Madam,” A voice with a slow southern drawl startles Aislinn and makes her jump. Looming next tot he table is a man who reminded her more of Lurch from the Adams Family then an actual person or server.

“Hi, I am here to try the free 3 course meal sample” Aislinn smiles and looks over the menu” And may I get a glass of water...”

Her words trail off as she notices the man is gone.-How could someone so big move so quickly?- She thinks-What about my water?- She leans into the cushion of the chair and it mold around her weight. She closes her eyes for a moment. I hope being late for a meeting with destiny as her mother referred to it was worth what ever the food she was going to get. Well anything is worth free, right? She opens her eyes slowly and sees a plate placed in front of her. On it was a small fist size cake, pale green icing with a yellow trim decorated it. 'Eat Me' was written on the top in white icing. Dessert first she wondered, well it was the MadHatter.

She picks it up and takes a bite. It immediately dissolves in her mouth melting away in a vanilla sweetness.It sends a slight tingle down her spine and the hair on the back of her neck stands up. She places the cake back on the plate.

“Do you like madam?” Lurch returns as silently as before.

“Whats in it?” Aislinn asks, her head spins slightly.

“A bit of wonderment, can you feel it?” He smiles.-Wonderment? What the hell was wonderment some type of drug?-Aislinn panicks- Oh my god this one of those places where they kidnap people and sell them into slavery. SHE DIDN'T WANT TO BE A SEX WORKER!!!-

Aislinn stands without knocking over her chair. The room starts to spin a bit. Without another word she heads to the door.

“Where ya off ta miss?” A tiny voice says. She looks at the oak hostess stand and a small white elephant in a top hat smiles at her.

“Oh god this is awful!” She shakes her head and pushes through the glass door. Her palms are slick with sweat. -This can't be good- She stumbles on the side walk and is caught by someone. She looks up to see the smiling face off the man with the coat tails. His green eyes seem to glow unnaturally.

“Miss you're courses aren't done” His smile widens and widens till it seems to reach beyond the frame of his face. Aislinn pulls free of his grip and turns back the way she came and runs.

“Wrong way Miss” He shouts after her. She glances back at his face, his smile was normal but his eyes glowed like a green screen with a inferno burning behind it. Aislinn left foot catches on something and her balanced is lost.

“Help” She tries to scream as she releases she's falling into an open manhole. Steam rises around her as she tumbles down the man hole. Steam with no heat swirls around her body she feels light. Green eyes seem to haunt her as the colors of the rainbow swirl around her. They seem to pulsate around her matching her own frantic heartbeat. -She was falling but not landing?- She tried to control her breathing as she turns head over blue heels as she falls faster.

Then she stops her body hitting something soft and curly. She grabs on to it.

“Ow” A deep voice rumbles.

“God?” Aislinn blinks

“No, but whomever you are on my head and pulling my hair” It replies. She notices the curls are black and kind of thick. “Here I'll place you on the ground”

A giant hand comes near her and wraps around her. -Giant hand? How is this possible?How in the world did she even fit into the hand was a mystery?- Aislinn tries to remain still. The hand opens and she looks around and sees the Lincoln Reflecting pool. The long stretch of water was surreal. She knew she's been here before on school trips and with family. But the normally blue water that was as clear as any mirror was a bright fluorescent pink.The sky wasn't blue, it was a hazy red and the white clouds were soft pink. The shapes they made were definite shapes, a square, a octagon, a triangle. She stepped off the giant hand and turned.

She screamed. It was Lincoln the statue was looking down at her but it didn't look like a statue he looked human. His suit was dark green and his hat rested on his knee. His skin was skin and not stone. He was moving! The Lincoln memorial statue was moving and talking.

“Stop screaming girlie!” Mr. Lincoln shakes his head at her, “You'll draw attention to us and more importantly yourself.”

Aislinn's mouth shuts “Attention from who?Where am I?”

“You, my dear, are in Norington and you don't want the attention of Red Card Guard.” Lincoln states as if it's something she should have known.

She glances around. -This must be a dream. Like a spirit quest of epic portions.-

“How do I get home?” She asks. If this is some cake hallucination type spirit quest she wanted to get it over as soon as possible. Maybe next time instead of sticking it to her mother and avoiding fat rich men she'll just suck it up and go and get it over with; and like a normal adult cure the pain of the day with happy hour.

“Ask the Great Razlos” He points to the left of the reflecting pool.”Avoid the Red Cards and try to blend in”

“Blend in,” She remarks, shaking her head and looks around. The grass was definitely greener, in a bright crayon box shade of green. But the buildings looked misshaped and odd colored as she passed them.A tree with what looked to be big fist sized apples caught her attention. Their bright red color was like a beacon reminding her that all she had was to eat was that LSD cake.-One bite couldn't hurt right?- She steps off the gray sidewalk and crosses toward the tree and reaches out toward one of the low hanging branches to grab one of the red apple like fruit.

“I wouldn't touch that”

Aislinn turns and glances over her shoulder. A man in a blue velvet smoking jacket and a striped top hat that looked worn, their were seven stripes and each was a different color of the rainbow. He slowly walked his way over to here.

“Who are you? Are you a Red Card?” Aislinn turns toward him fully.”Why can't I eat this apple?”

“I am not wearing red, nor am I card? Plus who are we anyway? Who are you? What is an apple? You can't eat an apple miss because that is in fact a grapple, which are known for biting back when bitten” The stranger says simply.

“I am Aislinn Lowe and I am looking for the Great Razlos and you are?” Aislinn watches him as he circles the other side of the tree. His multicolored eyes , a shade of blue, grey and green in one look at the tree rather than Aislinn. He pulls out a cane from behind his back without answering and in a blink of an her eye he's holding one of the red grapples in his hand.

“How come you can touch it?” Aislinn crosses her arms over her chest

“I am the Hatter” He taps his cane to his hat “And I am not Red Cap or Other. I am a free agent. I know where the Great Razlos. Would be wise to accept this offer?”

“What offer?” Aislinn laughs.

“To take you to the Razlos and “ He tosses the grapple at Aislinn she catches it with both hands “I got you food. It's all how you pluck them. It won't bite now or at least it shouldn't. I think”

“You don’t know” She asks

“Does anyone ever know?”He smiles. Aislinn could feel her hunger mix with her temper. Since he doesn't really answer a question fully. She took a bite of the grapple and turned from him. The juice was sweet but not over powering and it was almost like a candy. She started to head back to the gray sidewalk. He was offering to help which would be helpful if he didn't annoy her so much. In the short time she had to spend around him she wanted to be the biggest bitch and yell at him to just answer the questions she was asking.

“You're going the wrong way” He appears next to her strolling along like she hadn't left him behind. He takes a bite of a grapple and looks ahead.

“Lincoln told me this way” Aislinn shakes her head and continues forward.

“Ted. Ted is only halfway right your going the right direction But you can't stay on a path to find Razlos. You must go off the path and get lost to find the Razlos.”He says.

“And where do you suggest we go?” Aislinn rolls her eyes. He just points his cane toward some overgrown woods between two buildings.

“In there”Aislinn scoffs.

“To find anything worth finding you must first get lost” He replies and walks toward the woods that lie between the buildings space.

“Why should I trust you!”Aislinn calls

“Who else do you have to trust, so that you can not trust me?” He continue walks away. The reality of that statement was true. And the sooner she found these Razlos the sooner she could get home and reluctantly make something up to tell her mother so she doesn't kill her for being late. And it was highly unlikely she'd believe that she ate drugged cake and fell in a manhole and ended up in magical land, Aislinn jogs to catch up to him and follows him into the woods.

They walked. And walked. And walked. The terrain was soft under Aislinn's heels which was a pleasant surprise since they'd been walking for what seemed like ages.

“Almost not there” Hatter smiles at her, his eyes gleaming. Aislinn shakes her head slowly but then a smell hits her. It was soft like a floral perfume but it was smoky. Like if you set a garden on fire and the fire released the sweet scents of the garden into the air on wisps of smoke. Then Aislinn saw it as they kept moving forward. A haze of colored smoke. Red, green,orange, blue and a pure white like untraveled snow, which shouldn't have been so white being smoke but it was.
Her eyes slowly adjusted to the haziness of the area. She sees four figures through the smoke. As they move closer she realizes they are men but one has red skin and white dreads, another has green skin and red dreads and one has blue skin and red dreads, and one with orange skin and black dreads and the one that sat in the center of them all had pure snow white skin and gray and white dreads. The smoke billowed from the pipes they smoked.

“Hatter” The red skinned one said.
“Whom” The green one adds.
“Have”The blue one says
“You” The orange one continues.
“Brought” The white one finishes, they lift their heads and look toward Aislinn and Hatter. They each had heavy lidded eyes but the whites of them where clear despite the smoke in the air. Their pupils were black and wide. Aislinn thought they were dilated to the point where there was not color or were their eyes just all black?

“An Aislinn she was searching for you to ask you a question” Hatter bows. Somehow as he does his hat stays perfectly on his head.

“How do you know I had to ask them something?”Aislinn whispers to Hatter.

“I suggest you bow or they won't acknowledge you at all” Hatter responds. Aislinn grits her teeth and feels the muscle in her jaw tick. This is just a dream Aislinn she remind herself, just a dream. She bows to the Razlos.

“What”The red one starts
“Is” Says blue
“Your” Green tilts his head
“Question?” White finishes taking a puff of his pipe.

“I am not from here. I would like to know how to get home.” Aislinn says matter of factually as she straightens.

“Where” Red says
“Are” Green lounges on what seems to be a rock but adjusts to his body like a bean bag chair.
“You” Blue yawns
“From” White focuses his eyes on her.

“Washington, DC, 2011” She answers. Hatter sits next to a tree and twirls his cane. Aislinn tries to keep her focus on the Razlos.

The Razlos look to each other and speak a language she's never heard before. But their speech grows hushed and then the White one nods.

“A” Red starts...Aislinn tries to hide her irritation at this one word response system of the Razlos. She breathes in deeply.
“Portal”Green stretches lazily.
“Can”Blue inhales from his pipe.
“Be”Orange blows a puff of orange smoke into the air above him.
“Opened”White meets her eyes. The blankness of the blackness of his eyes makes Aislinn feel as if the White Razlo is looking past her completely and into something or someone else.

“How?” Aislinn filter her eagerness in her voice. She's almost home and without meeting anyone she wasn't suppose to meet. Well Hatter was an exception, she could have gone without meeting him for his question dodging and quirks but he was worth trusting because he brought her here.

“We”Red starts. Aislinn stifles a sigh.
“Can” Green grins at her
“Of” Blue exhales his pipe smoke.
“Course” White says finally with a tilt of his head.

“Now?” Aislinn tries to get more information. This was almost as bad as asking the Hatter who he was.

“In” Red inhales.
“Two” Orange looks into his pipe,
“Hours.”Blue shrugs.
“Time”White ends.

“Where?” Hatter asks smiling at Aislinn.

“The”Red laughs.
“Queen's”Blue grins
“Garden” White smiles his lids drooping as the edges of his mouth curl up.

“But how do we get there?” Aislinn asks,” What queen?”

Hatter stands quickly and takes her hand pulls her a few steps away and whispers “One free question and any follow up must be of the subject matter of the same question. The price you would pay would keep you far from home far longer than you'd expect to be”

Aislinn looks into Hatter's face and back at the Razlos.

“A”Red starts his smile turns into a frown
“Second” Blue grins widely showing blackened teeth.
“Question?”White looks at her a thin eyebrow raised. Aislinn gets a sick feeling in her stomach as if an angry colony of bees were shaken and let go into her stomach.

“No” Aislinn shakes her head furiously.”No, thank you”

“Two” Red smiles pleasantly as he inhales.
“Hours”Green adds.
“Time” Orange yawns.
“No”Blue smiles.
“More” Red tilts his head as he exhales
“No”Orange inhales from his pipe slowly.
“Less” White finishes, closing his eyes. And with that the smoke swirls around them and one by one they disappear and all that is left is the scent of a garden set a flame.
“Let us walk”Hatter starts heading to the left of the now open clearing where they now were. -Where'd the forest go?-Aislinn wonders as Hatter holds her hand and guides her along. They walk in silence.

“How do we get into the Queen's garden?” Aislinn asks after the walked out to the other side of the clearing and down a winding path. She knew the walk at least took a half hour which meant there was an hour and half left.

“We don't”

“What in the world do you mean we don't! We have to! That is where the portal will open” Aislinn huffs. Hatter just smiles calmly.

“When you least expect it, it will happen”

“Do you ever just answer anything simply”Aislinn fumes.

“If I did you wouldn't think and how do you know my answers aren't simply more simple and you dear girl, are making them more complicated to cause yourself more strife then simply seeing my answers as they are which is simply, a simple response.”

Aislinn stops and blinks as she tries to comprehend what Hatter had said. Her jaw tick comes back she breathes through her nose and out through her mouth.

“That made no sense!”Aislinn raises her voice. Hatter turns to her and bows with a smile.

“It makes all sense, as will this”

He disappears

“Halt!!!” A loud deep voice calls. Aislinn turns to see three cards, life like cards with limbs cover in red fabric and human faces.

“Don't move” The second one says he has a suit of hearts of his front.

Resisting arrest in DC was never a smart move. But this was a dream. So she controlled it so she could move and run if she wanted to. This was a dream. Aislinn turns and as she does the three card men, mulitply and circle around her baring gleaming silver swords point at her. Maybe this isn't a dream.

As one the red card stepped forward and stuck the point of the sword under her nose.-I think I am in a nightmare- Aislinn closes her eyes.
Two of the guards grab her and guide her steps to a floating table. They float upward into the red sky and toward what looked like the Capitol building. But it was blood red, almost crimson and the windows looked dark and grimy.
The doors open as the table slowly descends toward the ground. The guards guide her into the building. The walls were bright red, brighter than the grapple. It almost hurt to look at. All the doors in the hall were blood red as was the carpet she walked on. The hall seemed to go on forever. The long tall doors open as they get closer. She was pushed into the room, stumbling in and landing on her knees. She lifted her head up and the entire room was a bleached white except for a red stone throne that was raised so that her head in her position reached the foot of the throne. Aislinn sits back on her feet and looks up. And sees a girl with long white hair and a red gown with a dark red beaded bodice. A red heart

“Who are you” She asks her voice soft sounding but commanding.

“Aislinn Lowe” Aislinn stands slowly.

“Your head should be no higher than mine!”She snaps narrowing her eyes. Red Cards behind her shift in place. Aislinn sits a bit away from the stone red throne on the floor.

“Where are you from?” Her voice softer she looks Aislinn over.

“Washington.” Aislinn replies.

“You will stay for my games, we lost a recent contestant is no longer here” She smiles sweetly

“I am sorry you lost a contestant bu-”Aislinn starts.

“I -didn't- lose a contestant, the contestant merely -lost- their head.” The Queen tilts her head as she emphasizes the words didn't and lost. Aislinn remains quiet. “Will you play? Or will you lose your head too?”

“Of course your majesty” Aislinn smiles. How will I get out now she wonders. The Queen smiles and snaps her fingers. Aislinn looks down at herself. Her jeans, blouse and heels were changed into a red knee length dress with white hearts along the edge. Her blue heels were red mary-janes. “Let the games begin!”

The Queen stands and the throne moves from behind her and away. A door behind her throne opens and she heads towards it. Aislinn follows her a few steps behind as Red Cards follow her. They walk into the garden and the Queen turns to Aislinn.

“Go. If you make it to the end of my garden alive. You keep your head. If not.”the Queen draws her hand across her neck.

“Now?” Aislinn gasps. Death or Death or getting to an end of garden.

“Well sooner rather than later the Jabbawocky has already been released.”She smiles. A deafening roar comes from the corner of the garden nearest the building.”GO!”

Aislinn runs into the garden under an arch of red roses.She turns as a low growl comes from her left. The heels hurt as she ran. She slows at a corner and takes them off flinging them behind her. As they land a paw as big as her body lands near them. A face with fur and small red glowing eyes turns her way and it lets out a roar showing it's long jagged teeth. Aislinn didn't want to find out how many or how sharp they were. She started to run again trying to out run the beast behind her. She just need to get ahead enough to be able to lose it. She ran down a straight way and glanced behind her. It was getting closer.

“I want to go home”She pants as she runs. A hand grabs her elbow and pulls her out of the straight path and the beast slides past her unable to stop it's huge body in time.

“Well you're going the wrong way” Hatter smiles at her. Aislinn tries to rain in her temper.

“Where were you!!!!” She hisses lowly.

“Doesn't matter I am here now. Let’s run I don't want to be late to tea because I ceased to be”Hatter pulls her out into the straight way and back the way she had came. They ran and made a few turns and then she saw it.

“The portal!”Aislinn pants. Sweat lightly glossed over skin. The shrub wall behind her fell and leaves and red roses rained from the air and swirled around them. As the Jabbawocky roared and lowered it's giant lower half into a crouch stalking both her and the Hatter with it's gleaming red eyes.

“Run!” Hatter pushes Aislinn forward starting her legs moving she goes. Then she releases he's not next to her as she gets a few feet away. The beast is still watching Hatter.

“Hatter come on”Aislinn calls back to him.

“Go run you sane girl!”

“HATTER THAT THING WILL KILL YOU!RUN!” Aislinn glances between the portal and him.

“You run back to where you belong before the clock ticks past the time you've got!” He watches the beast.

“Are you MAD run!”She shakes her head looking at him pleadingly but he focuses on the beast.

“Quite, actually. Your time is slipping away they will not open it for you again” He smiles at her tipping his hat to her. The beast roared and started to charge. Aislinn's fear restarted her legs to run. She notices the edge of the portal blurring and starting to fade. She pushes her self to run faster. The colors were brighter as she got closer. She could feel the heat from the portal. She glanced back to see Hatter dodging the Jabbawocky's paws using his cane like a sword.

He tosses something from his coat in her direction, it seems to glide through the air crossing the space between them effortlessly and lands in her hand. It was a gold pocket watch. It popped open as she turned it over and blue smoke and a wind that shouldn't be coming from a watch blew past her. It knocked her back and into the portal.

“Hatter!” Aislinn shouts as the last scene she glimpses is Hatter dodging the mouth of the Jabbawocky.
Then everything goes black.

“Aislinn” A familiar voice calls. Aislinn's head hurts as she slowly opens her eyes and sees her mother’s worried face.

“Where am I?” Aislinn asks as she look around. Everything was white and blue.

“The hospital” Her mother replies.

“You tripped near a construction site and hit your head. “Clara smiles.

“I thought I was in a garden and there was a man and smoking men with colored skins”Aislinn touches her forehead and meets gauze.

“Most likely the pain meds they can cause weird dreams Miss. Lowe” A man in a white lab coat comes in “I am Dr. Hatton”

Aislinn's eyes widen as she looks at him. He has eyes that looked three colors depending on how the sunlight hit them. He smiled at her.

“Dreams?” Aislinn blinks. He nods.

“She may need some more rest.”Dr. Hatton looks toward Clara and her mother. The nod and each come to her giving her a hug and a kiss goodbye. The sound of their heels slowly fade down the hallway.

“Get some rest” Dr. Hatton smiles, bowing and turns toward the door and leaves.

“A dream?” Aislinn muses as she turns her head to the window as the sun's end of day light streams through it. A glint of something shines on the night stand near her bed. She reaches and pulls the item from the nightstand. It was round in her hand. She slowly opens her hand.
Aislinn gasps.

A golden pocket watch. A top hat engraved on the lid.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

High Heels and Combat Boots: Deployments

High Heels and Combat Boots: Deployments by Ashlee Doris

Missing someone hurts and is a part of normal relationships. But missing someone you love who is overseas on a deployment is a completely different story. “It's like a long distance relationship but without the ability for long conversations” said Stacey Graves, a military girlfriend with a boyfriend serving in Iraq. “Why spend your one conversation after weeks of no communication talking about anything but how much you miss them? It seems less important to waste the time on anything else”

Deployments are hard and a part of military life, but as military wife Tammy Hazlips-Adam puts it “If you can't take the distance don't date the military”. It's hard and sometimes very lonely. Families can go weeks and even months without contact. And most military significant others have being worried at the top of their emotions list. “But you have to keep being strong because you love someone and this is their job, you basically hope for the best,” Stacey says. “Sometimes the day to day things are hard because the little things that didn't bother you before bother you now because they remind you of how much you miss them”

 The military has programs designed for wives who are dealing with deployments. But sometimes it feels like they don't help at all. Both interviewees expressed that sometimes they feel more alone because some military interactions can be filled with drama and less helpful and leave you with more feelings of isolation. Most of their support comes from family and friends. What helps them through it?

“Planning about when he comes home and focusing on that” Stacey said. Tammy keeps the thought of a safe return in the front of her mind and that keeps her going. That is pretty much what every military significant other hopes for, it is the banner they carry with them. Their loved one comes home safe and they can continue their lives together.

“This deployment makes you see the bigger picture,” Stacey remarks. “Sometime you can't always have your way. It teaches you to compromise and see what’s important and it's your relationship and that person’s safety”

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Behind the Pen

Behind the Pen by Ashlee Doris

“It's always a challenge to ask the right and important questions.” Lori Potter, a reporter for the Kearney Hub in Nebraska say when asked what is the hardest thing about being a journalist, “Accuracy is important”

Ms. Potter has been in the journalism field for 25 years and is a member of the National Organization of Press Women. In her years of providing news for the Hub, Ms. Potter who is a believer “rural folks are just as interested in and deserving of good journalism as anyone else” and that’s what she provides. She uses her skill with photo journalism and reporting referring to herself as a 'professional note-taker' she delivers stories to the area she's close to.

From her experiences in the journalism world she's seen the differences between older editors and new ones, where older editors used to view female reports only good enough to be “society editors” to where now there are more opportunity and chances for “women journalist to fully use their talents and answer their calling in whatever field they choose.”

Female journalist have come a long way from 30-40 years ago when women were treated differently we've come a long way. Now that the average percentage of women journalist is 38% which means journalism and feminism are taking a step toward equality. Especially since ten years ago a study done by IFJ, International Federation of Journalist study showed the statistics for female journalist at 27%. With the numbers on the rise and organizations like National Organization of Press Women and Journalism & Women, they'll be another of generation with support of the last making full use of their talents in the field they choose.

High Heels & Combat Boots

High Heels and Combat Boots by Ashlee Doris
When you're involved with someone in the military it means you don't have much say when to go on vacation or where to live or when you see your significant other says Army spouse Aracely Jimenes-Hendricks. She adds "It's not easy and it's not like the show Army Wives"
It's not an easy task; there are many military girlfriends and wives stationed throughout the United States and foreign bases. Their job is keeping the home fires burning and keeping their families together while their solider is away. For wives on base according to Queen Waddell, the center coordinator for the USO of Metropolitan Washington, there are lot of programs for wives such as the Enlisted and Officer's Wives Club but for girlfriends who don't hold military ids there are some public events to try to ease deployments and new military stress. One of the most popular programs is the Hearts Apart program done by the USO, which is open to both wives and girlfriends.
Stacey Graves, military girlfriend said that the difference between what the military provides for wives over girlfriends is noticeable like sometimes not being acknowledged by the military as his girlfriend. But the common thing is the fear that deployments bring, Stacey's fear is if he's coming home  in one piece which is shared between wives and girlfriends, but as she views his involvement in the military as something that would make them stronger as a couple and as individuals.
Mrs. Jimenes-Hendricks states that there are lots of programs on base to give and get support during deployments and just being comfortable with the military because nothing really prepares you for being a military significant other. And despite the misconception that the show Army Wives shows solder’s as almost having a 9-5 job when the truth is the military controls your life and they aren't being paid a lot or have tons of vacation time or benefits. Being a military spouse is job and sometimes you aren't acknowledge for what you do and sometimes it's lonely but the thing that keeps you going is love so in turn you can support and keep the home fires burning for the one you love.