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I grew up a Navy Brat and was warned by my mother, “whatever you do, don’t marry a Navy Pilot.” So, that’s precisely what I did.

Navy life was always a great life for me. I never really knew anything else. Husband eventually left active duty and we settled in nicely in the Pacific Northwest. I became a lawyer, and we decided to raise a family. But, after twelve years in the Reserves, Husband’s ticket was up. That’s when this diary of sorts was born. He arrived home safely 15 months later, and we are now in the midst of that lovely process known as reintegration.

If you’re coming to my blog for the first time and don’t understand why I hate guinea pigs, why I never learned to do laundry, or how I know what poo tastes like, you can start from this first post, and keep hitting “next.” Most posts build on the previous, so starting at the beginning is a great way to move through some of the stories.

Disclaimers:

(1) I’m not that funny or dramatic in real life. I’m pretty normal. I really do cry thinking about Husband while he’s away, but usually not in public, and I’m not (normally) prone to fits of violence or borderline schizophrenia. This is my therapy, so writing about it makes it all a little more tolerable. By the time you read my posts, I’ve moved on. All sarcasm aside, I really am thankful for my life, my freedom, my health, my friends, my country, and my family. And I’m glad to have my husband home.

(2) All the events described herein are 100% true, and resemblence of characters to actual people is completely intentional. Trying to hide the identity of those who enter a life and contribute to a story is for wussies.

Thanks for reading.

32 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kathy Spade
    Mar 24, 2012 @ 18:57:04

    My husband is a retired Army Veteran. My Step-son has been deployed 4 times to Iraq and Afganistan. My Father served in the Army in the Korean War. My heart goes out to Kari Bales and her family , All of them, can’t even imagine how their hearts must be breaking. In one moment how your whole life can change, because you snap, for no fault of your own, but because of the pressures that have built up inside and the fear you must have felt, I know they expect so much of our military, but sometimes the mental make-up of just one person has had all that they can take, but our Army does not take that into consideration, These people that we are over there trying to defend are trying to kill us behind our backs, and we don’t know if its a woman or a child. Its a very sad situation. And I do feel sadden for the lives lost while they were sleeping. but my heart also goes out to Sgt Bales and for that I am not sorry. May God grant the Bales family Peace and be with them and May he be with us all in this terrible time in our Country. Amen

    Reply

  2. Nan
    Mar 24, 2012 @ 13:03:30

    Reading Barbara Romans comment, I couldn’t agree more.. I too am a military wife (retired Air Force) military Mom (active duty Navy) also an RN (worked at an Army hospital while we were in Germany). I agree completely that our military services do so little to help these service men and women deployed to these area who suffer with PTSD when they return. It is completely frowned upon for military members to seek any type of psychological help, it threatens to end their career. How tragic!
    Tragic to the extent that when people snap for lack of treatment, they have ruined relationships, commit suicide or murder. Come on America….we know better than this! Let’s start doing it right and provide adequate treatment and resources for these folks and their families!! Certainly with the knowledge the medical community has on PTSD this is more than possible. We have to stop looking at these types of illnesses as “crazy”, they are medical conditions just like diabetes or a broken leg.

    Reply

  3. Barbara Roman RN
    Mar 24, 2012 @ 00:36:10

    For Mrs. Bales, and ALL the wives and husbands and children of our soldiers in the military, and especially in the “hot” zones. My heart goes out to each and everyone of you. Having been an RN for 34 years in the Veterans Administration, I have seen upclose and personal what PTSD can do to a soldier. Our government does not do nearly 1/2 as much as they should to help them when they get home. Why remember back, how long it took the government to admit to Agent Orange !! Sgt. Bales may have made a terrible mistake, but there I believe are multiple factors in this case. In my eyes, he is innocent, unless proven guilty and proven sane at the time. Don’t let our government try to appease the Afgans for political reasons and let Sgt. Bale out to dry. All Americans should care about this case and watch what happens very carefully. Before you know it, Sgt. Bales will be the new Lt. Caley, if anyone remembers back that far.

    Reply

  4. Treecy
    Mar 23, 2012 @ 19:24:04

    Mrs. Bales, I’m sorry for your loss. My words are inadequate but I hope that you find some small measureof peace in knowing that many, many of us do not judge you because of your husband’s actions. I am so very sad for the familes who lost loved ones and babies in this horrible incident and for your loss of a husband and lfe as you knew it. In my prayers, all of you will be mentioned to receive, grace and mercy.

    Reply

  5. Helen Stosky
    Mar 23, 2012 @ 15:58:30

    How very sad that your husband was over there to protect the United States and how very sad that he cracked under pressure. And how very sad that the US that he stood up for is stabbing him in the back for something he had no control over. This is the most outragous, hippocritacal situation that someone who put their life in harms way is treated. I feel for you and wish you the best and I understand totally the frustration that you are going through being the victim of something that is beyond your control. My best to you.

    Reply

  6. Petra
    Mar 23, 2012 @ 15:53:20

    Lady for rearl?? Whats wrong with you ? Im a military wife for over 20 years now put your sympathy toward these killed Children and not cry for wife who although kept her mouth shut when her Husband stole someones lifesavings.
    Do you need some attention? Get a life

    Reply

  7. Eva Jeanine Cruz
    Mar 23, 2012 @ 15:53:07

    I am a former soldier, former Army wife and mother. I know the Military inside and out. I would like to say that I love wittylittlesecret and I am thankful that you guys have rallied around Kari Bales. She to is a victim and casualty of this situation. Anyone with negative comments in regards to the outpouring of sympathy for the Bales family is an outrage. Our military, along with their families sacrifice more than the average human can fathom.
    I am thankful for the band of women gathered to rally around Kari in what is a desperate time of need. Bless the Bales family. ALL of them.

    Reply

  8. Helen Rigas Sineriz
    Mar 21, 2012 @ 14:43:12

    Oh, yes , something I forgot to mention, besides being a military great grand daughter, grand daughter, daughter, I was also a military sister, and now I am a pround military mom !! God help and protect our Service Men and Women, and their Families !!

    Reply

  9. c scarvell
    Mar 20, 2012 @ 06:57:02

    I’m outraged over the sympathy the media is giving to Kari’s family and your monster huband. What about the 16 people he killed? Do you or the media know their names? Where is the sympathy for them? Kari’s husband should be handed over to the Taliban. Oh poor Sgt Bales. He had a nervous breakdown and vicously murdered babies. Oh let’s just forgive him. Think about the afghan father who just that night before put his kids to sleep, kissed his ittle girl goodnight, and told her not to be afraid of monsters. It’s only justice that you should suffer. You sound like all you care about is yourelf. How can you defend this action? You should spend the rest of your life figuring out how to top the suffering. You should dedicate your life to helping the people he murdered. Stop treating them like statitics. And what about the soldiers who obey the laws and have discipline? Alot of soldiers will suffer from his actions. It’s just the excuse the Taliban needs to kill more Americans. They want revenge, and good soldiers are going to be targeted. And now some one else’s father will pay. I dont wish you harm. But I think you should consider dedicating your life to helping those who have been permaanly injured. These people are living in abject poverty. They cant get on the news or blog. They have no voice. Start there. Find out who they are. Their stories. Be human.

    Reply

    • Lori Volkman @ Witty Little Secret
      Mar 20, 2012 @ 07:07:37

      First, nobody is asking us to “just forgive” SSGT Bales. Let me be clear – CNN didn’t mention it, but my job title is Deputy Prosecuting Attorney. What SSGT Bales deserves is a fair trial. I firmly believe that.

      Second, as some comments have pointed out (including by the way Ms. Bales in her own “Open Letter”) we are all equally sorry for the families of the 16 that were lost. Expressing concern for Ms. Bales does not speak one bit to the sorrow felt for those families. It is a tragedy for everyone who died and the families they left behind. Period.

      Third, Ms. Bales is not SSGT Bales. She hasn’t been to war four times. She wasn’t there when it happened. She was home doing her part – being a military spouse – and I don’t blame her at all for what happened. Sympathy does rightly belong with the family. They are being scrutinized by people like you for something that they had nothing to do with.

      Those who have not served shouldn’t try to put themselves in a position of trying to understand what it may have been like. This much, I know.

      Reply

    • Helen Rigas Sineriz
      Mar 21, 2012 @ 14:23:14

      People like you , is what bring misery in this world! Do not critisize the ones that give all to protect misery like you , for if it wasn”t for Warriors like the one you call Monster, you and your family might not been around! War is death, unfortunately, and when our Country commands and sends our Warriors to fight and protect , we love them when they come back in a coffin covered with The Flag, and call them Heroes, when they come home with no legs or arms, or their minds messed up from this War, we say ohh he is a Hero , and then we forget about them! But when we hear the details of how they fought that War that We send them to fight, some people like you critisize them and their families and call them Monsters!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh, by the way, my Grandfathers , and great Grandfathers, on both of the sides of my family, fought and killed a lot of Turks, and fought and killed a lot of Nazi Germans, and Italians under the Mousolini Regime. They and others Warriors like them are the reason we are free!!!!! To Misery people like you they are Monsters, to People like me , they are HEROES , !!!!

      Reply

    • Petra
      Mar 23, 2012 @ 15:54:16

      nicely said
      thank you

      Reply

    • Petra
      Mar 23, 2012 @ 16:00:44

      yep lets not forget the Soldiers still over there and feeling the heat

      Reply

    • Barbara Roman RN
      Mar 24, 2012 @ 00:42:59

      And these people could be Taliban, the children could have bombs in their clothes as they are taught to kill our American soldiers. I don’t believe it is such an innocent story as the Taliban and Afgans would like the world to think. This is political, all the way, and once again, the American soldier is the scapegoat for this fool of a war. These people kill their own people, burn their own wives, acid their wives, rape their female children, in the name of their God, please, lady, get a life, read a book, watch the history channel. Animals eat and kill their young, what do you think these people are doing??

      Reply

  10. lurlene walls
    Mar 20, 2012 @ 06:40:53

    I was a military wife for 12 years and my heart breaks for this woman. I just heard that she has two children. I would like to help her. Is there any way we could make some type of donation to help her out? Please let me know!

    Reply

  11. pat anderson
    Dec 08, 2011 @ 15:57:41

    When I read the article in Reades Digest, I thought for sure you and fam. were sitting at our family table! I especially liked the comment about God, my son yells, at all of us like we are his company, finnaly I piped up and said, I am your Mother, not your soldier.
    I have nothing but admiration for the families at home, and love for all in the military.
    Mom

    Reply

  12. gigi wolf
    Dec 04, 2011 @ 14:51:55

    Alright, I’ll comment! I read about your blog in Reader’s Digest and came to see it for myself. Enjoyed the visit. I don’t write about precisely the same topics, but I did find myself fascinated by my parent’s history during Memorial Day, and wrote about them in my post ‘The Fighter Pilot and The Figure Skater’. I wish my mother had had the time and inclination to write after she became a mother. It probably would have helped her immensely-
    gigi wolf, author of A Woman’s Guide To Everything on ChezGigi.com-

    Reply

  13. Rebecca Crone
    Nov 16, 2011 @ 18:47:56

    I hope you don’t mind me following. I am no longer a military wife but I miss the closeness.

    Reply

  14. Dave Thebigsarge Sivewright
    Sep 14, 2011 @ 10:15:56

    Dig the Blog Lori aand the article that was written up in the Reflector. My family and I are not seperated by a deployment but rather I am stationed in Salt Lake City for the next three years while my wife and four kids still live in Ridgefield. I promised my daughter that the high school she starts at is where she will graduate. I found the Article that Bradny wrote after she had told me about. She was getting some information from me about presenting the US Flag I have been runing with for the last year and a half to the City of Ridgefiled. Anywasy I hope the days go fast until your husband returns. I have another 3 months until my next visit home. Take care!

    SFC Dave Sivewright

    Reply

  15. Terri Lynch
    May 06, 2011 @ 12:33:36

    Hi Lori – Just saw the article about being a finalist for the Military Blog Awards! FAB!! (Great picture too.) I always tell folks that our freedom isn’t free, and the military and their families pay much of the cost. Thanks so much for sharing Randy right now to pay that price! (And for the folks you’re helping with your blog too.) Big Hugs, Terri

    Reply

    • wittylittlesecret
      May 06, 2011 @ 13:32:01

      Well as both an officer and a spouse I think you have the sacrifice piece all sewn up, Terri. It has been a great medium to reach spouses that feel alone, military members that appreciate and wonder what it was like for their spouses or parents, and civilians who don’t have much exposure to the military way of life. It’s great hearing from you. Let’s catch up online.

      Reply

  16. Jen Graham
    Jan 09, 2011 @ 23:30:50

    You made me cry January 3rd. You are in our prayers and thoughts. You are so brave and a great example to me.
    Jen

    Reply

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