Even before and after the interview we spoke endlessly. We had so many topics to cover; from weird things that happen on base, to military IDs, to saying goodbye to friends… but the funny thing is, is our actual experiences were completely different.
Moriah’s dad was Army. As an Air Force brat I never really met very many Army kids. Our bases/ forts are in different places and the lifestyles are, in general, fairly contrasting. However, even though we did not grow up in all of the same places, go to any of the same schools, or even enjoy the same sports, we still had a lot in common.
This is one of the wonderful things about our “military brat” community. Even though we are spread out all over, when we meet a fellow mil-brat, it creates a feeling of mutual understanding.
My last blog referenced the book Third Culture Kids, by David Polluck and Ruth Van Reken, quite a bit. So someone gave me the book as a gift! It is a great read and I highly recommend it to military families, parents and children alike. One of the things it hits the nail-on-the-head about is forming a sense of identity. When children are moved around so often during their formative years (age 0-18) it is hard to form a “sense of self”. Experiencing so many cultures may mean that you understand the culture, but you do not truly identify with it. As such, TCKs often feel like misfits.
Preach! I have the hardest time figuring out where I feel like I’m from. I don’t feel like a southerner, or a mid-westerner, or a westerner. So something I loved that Moriah said in our interview, is that she is just American. When you live in a collectivist culture like the military, maybe this is an important aspect. We all need to feel like general, run-of-the-mill Americans so we have pride and faith in the country that we have seen every nook and cranny of.
Talking to Moriah was a wonderful, insightful, and a truly humbling experience. This is a short snip-bit of our interview. I will be posting more small interviews with other mil-brats and stay tuned for updates on my upcoming documentary! Yes, it is finally happening, and I could use all the support I can get on this project. So send your stories my way and spread the word to your fellow military friends!