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How to Cope with an Active Duty Child

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  • How to Cope with an Active Duty Child

If you have a child that is on active duty, it’s very easy to get stressed out. It really is.

Now, you may be thinking that if your child is on active duty, but stationed in the mainland of the United States guarding some sort of facility or, better yet, working in the field, maybe your child is doing office work somewhere, that the chances of anything bad happening to that active duty child is quite low.

Well, given the tremendous amount of terrorism and the fact that terror can strike at any time and at any place, you can kiss all those old assurances goodbye. They simply go out the window. That’s how crazy our modern world is. That’s how much the rules have changed.

Back in the day, you can almost rest assured that if your kid qualified for a military job that involves shuffling paper, the worst injury your kid can expect to suffer in the span of his or her military duty takes the form of a paper cut. Not anymore.

There are many cases of recruiters simply showing up to a designated place and getting shot up by somebody that they were completely unaware of. This happens quite a bit, and it’s quite alarming. And that’s why you really have to have some sort of coping strategy.

I would suggest that you adopt a mindfulness practice. By either counting your breathing or visualizing an alternative part of your memory, you train your mind to focus on the moment.

This is crucial. This should be a groundbreaking or watershed moment in a stressed out active duty child parent. Why? Well, you’re no longer thinking about things that could happen in the future.

They haven’t happened yet, but here you are, burning a tremendous amount of brain cells, knocking around all sorts of possibilities in your head. The only thing that you’re managing to achieve is to run yourself emotionally, physically and mentally to the ground. Stop it.

Practice meditation. Practice mindfulness. Do whatever you need to do to focus on the moment and get some emotional distance from what could be by focusing on what is.

Similarly, when you adopt a mindfulness practice, you free yourself from the tyranny of the past. You know that there were certain things that happened to your child in the past. You know, from your own past experiences, about a whole range of negative things that could happen to your active duty child.

By focusing on the present moment, you let go of the past. It no longer has a hold on you. It no longer forces you to worry. Instead, you focus on you love for your child and you send out good vibes that hopefully would translate into an optimistic attitude that can help make things easier, not just on yourself, but on people around you.

Project positivity and you’ll be surprised how quickly this can turn into a self-sustaining process. You won’t miss your old mindset. You become part of a system that is able to give, uplift, and encourage on a long term basis.