Articles

Deployments and Random Acts of Emotions
http://elliekay.com/blog/1116/deployments-and-random-acts-of-emotion/

How Parents of Warriors Can Support Reintegration
http://www.realwarriors.net/family/support/parents.php
It’s exciting to have a warrior in your family. Your son or daughter is important to our country and you should be proud of them. However, you may have mixed feelings and emotions about a son or daughter’s deployment to Iraq, Afghanistan or elsewhere around the globe. But as the parent of a warrior, you are not alone — there are many resources to help you support your service member as he or she reintegrates after a deployment.

When Our Children Deploy
www.survivingdeployment.com
A military mom shares tips for parents of deployed service members.


____________________________________________________________________



Books

A Civilian's Guide to the U.S. Military
A comprehensive reference to the customs, language and structure
of the Armed Forces
Author: Barbara Schading, Copyright @ 2011
Ten-Hut! Get Your Details Straight! If you are thinking of writing a nonfiction article or an espionage or mystery novel involving the military, this is the ideal reference to have on hand. (And even if you're not, you'll find this book is very hard to put down especially in light of today's world events.)

'As a reader and writer, odd details of military life have always intrigued me,' says author Barbara Schading. 'The idea for this book came about as I sought useful information about the American Military, but found it wasn't available in a simplified, cohesive source.' Schading covers the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard, and special forces in great detail. Information for each branch includes its mission, background, ranks, uniforms, joining and training information, weapons, and more explained in terms that are easy to understand and make for fascinating reading. For example, did you know Marine recruits are always brought into Boot Camp in the middle of the night to add to their nervousness, fear, and intimidation? Or that upon graduation, every Special Forces soldier is issued a 'Yarborough' knife, named in honor of General William Yarborough, the 'father of the Green Berets.' Only current and former Special Forces are allowed to purchase the knife whose blade is engraved with the name 'Yarborough' and its serial number. This all-inclusive guide also includes information about Military law, decorations and ribbons, laws of war and the Geneva Convention, special honor guards and their duties, and several glossaries and appendices that contain slang expressions, acronyms, pay grades, ranks, and a thorough listing of each branch's military equipment.


A Prayer Journey Through Deployment
Author: Donna Mull, Copyright @ 2010
When a soldier serves, so does the family. Donna Mull saw that statement on the shirts some military wives were wearing at a Fourth of July parade as they marched with their husbands. Suddenly, that statement had become personal. She had heard stories about mothers whose faithful prayers had changed lives. When her son received his orders for deployment to Iraq, she wanted to be one of those mothers. Equally motivated by love and pain, Ms. Mull embarked on a year-long journey of prayer, writing weekly devotionals that focused on the specific needs of soldiers and their families. She then forwarded them to friends and family, who used them as springboards for their own prayer times. If you have a loved one in the military, chances are you are engaged in a battle of your own. Will your loved one survive? Will you? How will you cope while your soldier is away? When your soldier returns, will he or she be changed? 


Battles of the Heart
Boot camp for military moms 
Author: Tracie Ciambotti, Copyright @ 2012
What happens to our natural instinct, as a mother, to protect our child when he or she is ordered to one of the most dangerous places in the world? What gets us through the day? How do we survive?

Tracie Ciambotti's son, Josh, enlisted in the Army two days after he graduated from high school in 2005. Five months later he was on his way to Baghdad and the reality of war began to sink into the depths of Tracie's heart. She had no idea when or if she would ever see her son again. As the weeks passed, fear became the master of her days. Josh had received the best training in the world for his new job as a combat soldier with the United States Armed Forces, but Tracie had none for her role as the mother of a service member. While her son was fighting a war in Iraq, she was marching-unaware and unprepared-into her own battle at home.

Battles of the Heart reminds us that freedom is not free. Every American needs to understand the sacrifices that military families endure for our freedom. Journey through two deployments and discover along with Tracie how to survive the challenges that military families face daily.


Closing the Gap
Understanding your service(wo)man
Author: Yvonne Jones, Copyright @ 2012
If anyone could understand us, it should be you. Yet we continue to drift further and further apart…

Written from the military family members’ different perspectives, Closing The Gap: Understanding Your Service(wo)man is designed to reconnect military families with their non-military friends and family members at a time when they need each other more than ever. For the first time, facts and common misconceptions about the military lifestyle have been accessibly presented and composed in a manner that specifically appeals to friends and families of military families. This book is meant to apply to all families and friends of our service(wo)men of every branch within the military. It was written in order to make a positive difference by giving people within the civilian world the information they need to understand the experiences of and reconnect with those that protect their freedoms and rights.


Courage After Fire for Parents of Service Members
Strategies for coping when your son or daughter returns from deployment
Authors: Paula Domenici PhD, Suzanne Best PhD, Keith Armstrong LCSW
Copyright @ 2013
Parents of returning service members may sometimes feel that their voices are not heard. The media is saturated with stories about troops returning from deployment with mental health problems like post-traumatic stress, depression, and substance abuse. Some also return home with physical problems including traumatic brain injury, physical pain or more severe injuries like amputations. Almost all returning service members experience reintegration challenges such as readjusting to family and community, finding employment or attending school.

But rarely do we hear how parents are taking on the role of supporting their sons and daughters who have served our country. In countless ways these parents provide help—and when their military child suffers significant physical or psychological injuries, they may once again become their primary caretaker. For mothers and fathers and others in a parenting role, it can be overwhelming at times, and resources are limited.

Courage after Fire for Parents of Service Members provides a compassionate and accessible guide for the parents or guardians of returning troops. This groundbreaking book acknowledges the significant contribution and sacrifice parents have made for their military children, provides strategies and resources that will assist them in understanding and supporting their son or daughter, and will validate their own personal experiences.

Recommendations for helping them care for their returning service member are woven throughout the book, as well as education about the importance of taking care of themselves to help prevent caregiver burnout. Vignettes and reflections from parents who have had a child deploy offer a sense of hope and community.

Even in the best of circumstances, parents play an instrumental role in helping their sons and daughters successfully reintegrate after deployment. This book is a valuable resource for any parent who is seeking to better understand and support a returning military child while caring for themselves.


Deployed Grandparents Being Parents
Author: Debbie Nichols, Copyright @ 2010
Deployed Grandparents Being Parents is a true story of a working empty nester grandmother raising her granddaughters during her US Air Force daughter deployment to Afghanistan. Debbie and her husband moved the children to their home in California. Enrolled the children in school, changed their empty nester lifestyle, changed roles from grandmother to mother, dealt with the fear of her daughter in harm's way, learned what it meant to have a family member deployed. Dealt with her mixed emotions of being in this situation. She learned how to keep communications going between her daughter and granddaughters, dealt with raising kids today vs. 30 years ago, tried to make her granddaughters stay a positive experience. Debbie learned how to change back to her original role of a grandmother. And faced the biggest challenge of all reuniting the family back to their original roles prior to deployment, and having a empty nest again. Debbie looked for information on guardians caring for military deployed children and there was none. Not having a military base close by and no support of what to do during deployment. Debbie granddaughter's had a positive experience living with her and her husband. And in her book provides helpful hints for those guardians caring for children.


Everyone Serves
A Handbook for Family & Friends of Service Members
During Pre-Deployment, Deployment and Reintegration
Author: Blue Star Families, Copyright @ 2013
Link to FREE e-book download
This handbook has been designed to address a subject that’s not discussed enough: the full spectrum of emotions that accompany a military deployment life cycle. That means not just looking at post-deployment reintegration but also examining other parts of the equation: pre-deployment, deployment, and reunion periods.

This FREE guide helps you:
  • Build resilience
  • Strengthen relationships
  • Learn coping strategies
  • Prepare for and manage reunion and reintegration

Includes video, checklists and resources


Everything About ME (Military Personnel and Families Edition)
A guide for my future caregivers
     Author: Dee Marrella, Copyright @ 2011
With the huge numbers of American soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with injuries requiring long-term care -- possibly life-long care, this book (print and electronic versions) provides individuals and their families with a way to create a true tool that can be used by any caregiver who ever works with this person. Since family members might not always be available to be the caregiver in a veterans life, this guide will provide even a total caring stranger with a lifetime of knowledge, information and guidance on what the individual desires in the way of caregiving. This book, when completed, will tell all who use it every important fact about them: how "I" feel about life support, my favorite foods, the TV programs I dislike, how I'd like to have my obituary read, and my funeral conducted. When the time comes that a once vibrant individual required round-the-clock caregiving, and may not have a "voice" left o speak with -- this book can be that "voice" tell all who use it everything you want known.


I Want You to Know Me
Love, your American hero
Author: Vickie L. Mullins, Copyright @ 2007
Are you messy or neat? Are you a deep sleeper or a light sleeper? Can you roll your Rs? Do you ask for directions?

While our country’s sons and daughters are away, they desperately need to know they are still connected back home. Through this book, I Want You to Know Me … Love, Your American Hero, every day mom and dad can see their hero’s hand-written words describing how he thinks, feels and looks. Yes, he has a cleft in his chin; it’s just like his grandfather’s. Mom and dad can touch their hero’s heart from a distance.

The American hero’s husband or wife can hold the dog-eared copy of their spouse’s book and picture the answers without opening the cover. Yes, he did a flip off the diving board, and we spent the night in the hospital repairing the damage. Their relationship grows stronger.

We feel I Want You to Know Me … Love, Your American Hero, is our most important book so far, because, in times of uncertainty, it is so important to bring a sense of peace to everyone touched by the lives of our American heroes: mom and dads, grandparents, spouses, children.


Love You More Than You Know
Mothers' stories about sending their sons and daughters to war
45 powerful, personal tales of love, faith, and courage
Authors, Editors: Janie Reinart, Mary Anne Mayer, Copyright @ 2009
In these stories, 45 mothers of U.S. service men and women open their hearts and share what it feels like when your son or daughter leaves home to fight a war.
Some were stunned to learn one sunny afternoon that their baby had enlisted. Others had long been familiar with military life. But all of these mothers knew their world had just changed the day their child called home and said, Mom, I m being deployed . . . 

They discovered the strange mix of pride and fear. The anxiety of not knowing exactly where in Iraq or Afghanistan your son is, whether your daughter is facing mortar fire or enduring heat and boredom. Elation at the arrival of the briefest postcard or email message. The daily dread, when returning home from work or a trip to the grocery store, of seeing a government car in the driveway and two soldiers at the door . . .

Any parent who reads these stories will feel their power--and will gain a greater understanding of the sacrifice made by parents as well as their children in our military.


Minefields of the Heart
A mother's stories of a son at war
Author: Sue Diaz, Copyright @ 2010
How do combat veterans and their loved ones bridge the divide that war, by its very nature, creates between them? How does someone who has fought in a war come home, especially after a tour of duty marked by near-daily mortar attacks, enemy fire, and roadside bombs? With a journalist's eye and a mother's warmth, Sue Diaz asks these questions as she chronicles the two deployments to Iraq of her son, Sgt. Roman Diaz, from the perspective of the home front.

Sergeant Diaz's second deployment put him south of Baghdad in the region aptly termed the Triangle of Death. There his platoon experienced extraordinarily heavy casualties during the height of the Iraqi insurgency. That unit has since become the focus of considerable media attention following events that made headlines in the summer of 2006: an insurgent attack at a remote outpost on three of their own--one killed at the scene, the other two kidnapped, their bodies found days later; and a terrible war crime committed against an Iraqi family by four soldiers from First Platoon. 

Minefields of the Heart adds a very personal dimension to the larger story of this Bravo Company platoon from the 101st Airborne's 502nd Infantry Regiment, a unit known since World War II as the "Black Heart Brigade." Diaz recounts the emotional rollercoaster her family and other soldiers' families experience during and after deployment. She explores this terrain not only through stories of her son's and family's experiences connected to the Iraq War, but also by insights she's gained from other veterans' accounts--from what she calls "the box" that soldiers returning from any war carry within. This added layer gives her narrative broader meaning, bringing home the impact of war in general on those who fight and on those who love them. 

Minefields of the Heart is a story of innocence lost, understanding gained, and hope reaffirmed. In addition to veterans and their families, this book will appeal to anyone who wants to understand war's impact on individuals as well as on the fabric of our society. 


Mom's Field Guide  
What you need to know to make it through your loved one's military
deployment 
   Author: Sandy Doell, Copyright @ 2006
website
When Sandy's son was deployed to Iraq in 2004, she felt overwhelmed with fear and anxiety. She couldn't help but worry. To keep herself busy, she turned her energies toward finding ways to support her son from the home front. After thousands of hours of research and her own first-hand experience along with many lessons she learned from other military families, she wrote Mom's Field Guide: What You Need to Know to Make It Through Your Loved One's Military Deployment. She shares what she learned with other families in the same situation.


My Son Is A Marine
   Author: Jo Anne Allen, Copyright @ 2005
website
After enduring grueling weeks of boot camp, 18-year-old Marine Lance Corporal Aaron J. Allen threw his Class A cap into the air at graduation. He was ready to be deployed to the fiercest battle zone in Iraq, where terrorism has replaced conventional warfare and there is no clearly defined enemy.

Confronted by these conditions and the horrifying nightly news reports of fatalities, what can a mother do to protect her son from thousands of miles away? Jo Anne Allen chose to sustain herself and keep A.J. strong and safe using communication. In this timely book, she reminisces about A.J.'s childhood and the precious memories that are forever embedded in her heart. She uses her words to recreate the wonder of those times and replace the hugs and kisses of the past with stories full of love and faith. 

Young Marines fighting for their lives alongside her son also find solace in Jo Anne's spiritual beliefs, nurturing hearts, and incredible peanut butter cookies.


9 Miracles
One mother's amazing journey home after seeing her son off to war
  Author: Leigh Watson, Copyright @ 2011
When Leigh's husband is unable to accompany her to see their Air Force son, Luke, off to Iraq, Leigh mentally prepares herself to make the trip alone, knowing she will have to be strong for Luke's sake. Along the way, she encounters extraordinary people and incredible circumstances that could only be defined as heaven-sent. Rejoice, how as one exits - another appears, carrying her on the wings of mercy all the way home.

Join us now on this amazing journey as you witness the grace of God's loving hand upon a mother's aching heart. Discover to what lengths God will reach, proving the depth of His love and concern. Rest in the knowledge that HE will provide the strength you need to get through even the most difficult day.

God is willing to work a miracle in your life today, if you will only trust Him.


1001 Things to Love About Military Life
Authors: Tara Crooks, Starlett Henderson, Kathie Hightower and Holly Scherer
Copyright @ 2011
A first-of-its-kind celebration of military life, 1001 Things to Love About Military Life chronicles some obvious and not-so-obvious traditions, advantages and experiences military members, veterans and their families share.

Full of heart-warming vignettes, laugh-out-loud lists, stories and quotes from military members and family members, and photos that speak a thousand positive affirmations, this inspirational look at those who dedicate their lives to serving perfectly illustrates why it is a profession and lifestyle to love.

You'll find practical truths most service members wouldn't want to live without and learn the unique outlooks, services and advantages military life provides. Military or civilian, you'll experience the community and personal growth that the military offers.

Whether you have a friend or loved one in the military, you're a service member ready to head out on duty, a spouse gearing up to take charge of the household, a veteran in need of a few good laughs, or a new recruit looking for encouragement, this book provides inspiration and insight into the lives of today's dedicated and courageous military families.


Strength for Today While My Soldier Is Away
website
Author: Carol J. Channer, Copyright @ 2008
Also available as an e-book download
While her only son prepared to join the Army, Carol Channer began to scour stores for a book on the subject of sending a child off to war. Finding none, she began journaling her own feelings, fears, and frustrations, as the Lord began to plant an idea within her spirit to pen a devotional book aimed directly at the heart of our military families.

Strength for Today While My Soldier Is Away is a compilation of thoughts, reflections, poetry, Scripture, and prayers intended to move the reader away from worry and fear; redirecting their attention to the wonderful provisional grace of the Lord.


The Mom's Guide to Surviving West Point
Authors: Lisa Browne Joiner and Deborah L. W. Roszel, Copyright @ 2012 
Sending your son or daughter off to college is never easy, but sending your pride and joy to the United States Military Academy is downright scary. There are so many unknowns-from Beast to boodle to all those confusing Army acronyms! That's where The Mom's Guide to Surviving West Point comes in. This book is designed to guide you as you figure out how best to support and encourage your cadet through the next four years.


When the Eagle Invades the Nest
Empty nest military families
Author: Rebecca Lynn Green, Copyright @ 2010
Experience what it's like to watch your child grow into serving his/her country. A personal account of the events that lead a child to adulthood by way of the military. Stories and recounts of other military parent's knowledge to help you through one of the most difficult time in your life....letting your child go to war.


Your Soldier, Your Army
A parents' guide
     Author: Vicki Cody, Copyright @ 2007
Download for free in English or Spanish
Army wife and mother Vicki Cody has written a 64-page book to help parents of soldiers have a better understanding of life in the military. The publication is aimed at soldiers’ families and in-laws and covers a variety of topics from deciphering military acronyms to understanding what takes place during a deployment.

“I have an advantage of having been part of this system for the past 30 years,” Cody wrote in the preface. “Still, I know how scary it’s been for me having both sons in a combat zone, and I think about all the parents out there who don’t have that background. This must be very confusing and frightening for them.”

Her sons were deployed at one time to Iraq in the same unit, and the older went back soon after while the younger was preparing to deploy at the time she was writing the book.

“This is a stressful time to have a Soldier in your family,” she wrote. “It takes a lot of courage to be a parent of a Soldier and especially to send one off to combat.” Cody wrote that she hopes that by reading this book families can better cope with deployments and other aspects of military life.


____________________________________________________________________



Compassionate listening service

Stephen's Touch - Free, compassionate listening service for military family members living without a loved one
www.stephenstouch.org
The Stephen Ministries is a non-denominational ministry that provides a one-on-one confidential listening ministry. Since starting in 1975, more than 9,000 congregations from over 100 denominations are involved in Stephen Ministry.  These congregations come from all 50 states in the U.S.A, 9 Canadian provinces and 21 other countries.  

Stephen Ministers care for people who are suffering some difficulty or trauma in their lives. Stephen Ministers don't give advice and they don't proselytize.  If the person receiving care wishes, the Stephen Minister may say a prayer during the session for them but that is totally optional.  

The caring listening is being offered to spouses, parents, adult children and siblings of those who died or those who are dealing with separation due to military service.  Please pass this information along to others who would benefit from the caring listener.


____________________________________________________________________



Mother's Day canvas photo

Operation Hi Mom! - Free fine art canvas on Mother's Day
http://cool.canvasondemand.com/category/operation-hi-mom-honey/operation-hi-mom-10/
Operation Hi Mom awards hundreds of our deployed men and women a free fine art canvas, printed from a favorite photo, which will be presented to their moms on Mother’s Day. Deployed soldiers can simply go to a specially-designed webpage to submit a request, write their mother an endearing message, and upload a photo. It’s a way for soldiers to say to their mom, I love you…and it’s a way for Canvas on Demand to say to our troops, Thanks for a job well-done!


____________________________________________________________________



Resources

Military OneSource
1-800-342-96471-800-342-9647 
www.militaryonesource.mil
Information and support resources for parents of service members - As the parent of a service member, you are likely to have questions about your son's or daughter's military life. For example, you may want to understand what role you can play as your son or daughter transitions into the service. You may also have questions about what to expect when your service member returns home.


____________________________________________________________________




Service flags

Service flags
www.serviceflags.com
Sells service flags in addition to custom and stock products including flags, coffee mugs, t-shirts, yellow magnets, lapel pins, vinyl banners, envelope stickers and more. 


____________________________________________________________________



Welcome home banner and cards

Build A Sign - Free welcome home banners and jumbo cards 
www.buildasign.com/Troops
Build A Sign has given away over 275,000 free banners and jumbo cards to support our Troops at home and abroad. Just pay shipping costs.
Resources for parents of military personnel
__________________________________________________________________
HomeAbout usTestimonialsContact usContest

Resources specific to
  • Military supporters
  Toolkit, practical insights in
  caring for the military,
  interest-based support listing,
  free Thank You cards, military
  charity check

Military community resources
  • Christian encouragement
  Bibles, devotionals, studies
  Bible verses that offer hope
  Of grace and gratitude
  Prayer
  Word & Worship Wednesday
  • Deployment support for
  Military personnel
  Military spouses
  Military children, teens
  • Downloads and printables
  Brat Town Bugle TM
  Coloring pages
  Flat Brat TM
  Military house ornament

Operation We Are Here
Follow us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter
Follow us on Pinterest
Follow us on
resources
Copyright 2008 - 2014 Benita Koeman, Operation We Are Here.  All rights reserved.
Operation We Are Here is a HUB of RESOURCES for the military community and military supporters.
Military support is not a concept to embrace; military support is sacrificial action. Visit our military support TOOLKIT.