Medical Retirement, Really? Who saw it coming?
It has been one and a half years since my husband sustained a traumatic brain injury. After so many fruitful efforts my husband will be undergoing a medical retirement from the Army. At first I was so worried because my husband did not want to retired but the reality is that most of his impairments will stay with him in some way or another so he will never be fit to return to duty. It will be a difficult transition not only because of what the process entails but for me it will feel like a separation, a divorce from the army. This may sound strange or maybe dumb but I am honest in what I feel. For me it feels like another loss, another grief, another reason that makes me sad and wonder...
In the army I met wonderful friends, those to whom I shared so much. When the soldiers deployed, we the spouses were more united than ever, we had Friday nights dinner, Saturday care packages preparation and we always had something to do. It was a family, one that carries the same burdens, worries and joys. Being a military wife can be very rewarding, so I will miss that. My friends will remain friends but one day their duty will take them somewhere else.
Well going back to the Medical Evaluation Board (MEB), a process that takes days for some, months for others like my husband. The first appointment is conducted by the doctor in charge of the medical care and this doctor will review the list of conditions. I was overwhelmed seeing that before my husband had null, zero, nada conditions and now his list is longer than a 4 year old list to Santa Claus. Yes it saddens me but at the same time looking at the positive side I am so blessed to have him with me.
I encourage all spouses of soldiers that are starting or undergoing the MEB to be next to them, go to their appointments (of course if he/she wants to) and be very aware and knowlegeable about the process because whatever happens will affect your future.
For now we just had the first visit and the development of the list of conditions. The next appointment the 27th will be a more thorough review.
Much love and hugs!