Posts tagged ‘Army’

Two things….

Women in the Army have to endure at least two things that men don’t…

Sports Bras & Buns… Hair buns that is!  These two things alone usually scare males and females alike… but to females they are especially harrowing.

Sports bras are needed for physical training (PT) and recommended for daily wear under ACUs.  While mostly comfortable, they can be constricting or too loose, unflattering (uni-boob), and difficult to put on.  The stretchy fabric usually doesn’t come in a lot of color choices or sexy designs.  Frankly, a woman feels a lot more like a woman in a lacy, underwire bra!

Hair buns – allowed in the Army so that females can maintain a feminine appearance while keeping their hair secure – need to be tight, clean, and pretty much plastered to your head.  Buns have to be low enough on your head so that you can easily put on your covers and helmets, but high enough that they don’t fall below the top of your shirt collar.  They are sometimes so tight that you end up with a headache halfway through the day and you feel like your eyes have been pulled back like a child making a bad joke.  The amount of product that must be used per day to keep a bun in place could glue the rearview mirrors back on a lot-full of junked cars.  And washing it out daily is a pain in itself.

There are plenty of other things that females have to endure that men don’t… “that” time, ill-fitting uniforms, exemption from infantry (some see that as good, some don’t), cat-calls from the idiot males, a possible glass ceiling, other females in the barracks… I’m sure there is more!

My point is these two things… 1. women are inherently different from men, and 2. the Army should allow women to be women.

It used to be that females in the Army had to act like females.  WAACs wore skirts, hose, heels.  But they were also limited in their Army careers.  Now, we have a lot more rights in the Army (and society in general), but something seems to be missing.  Women in the other service branches except the Marines (they are a bit hard core) have uniforms that show them off as women much better.  They are flattering, in a sense, and allow a female to act as a female.

I am a woman/female, right?  But I can’t act like that in Army, even though I still have to maintain a feminine appearance.  Looking at me in uniform, the only things that would definitively give me away as a female are the blonde bun on the back of my head, and the slight bulge on the front of my uniform. I don’t think that we should be allowed to wear our hair loose, or that heels should be mandatory, but I think the Army needs to rethink how they look at females.  They went from one extreme to the other, and didn’t even hit the middle… now they need to work their way back.  Allow more fitted uniforms, allow us to act as females, allow us to work in all divisions of the Army… doing so will allow us be ourselves, to achieve more personally and professionally, to grow into our roles as adult females in society.  Let us have our cake, and eat it too!  I promise the Army will be much more productive in the end.

I would like to be recognized as a female because that is who I am.  In civilian life, I am about as girly as one can get.  I realize that the Army wants us to seem strong and independent and able to do anything.  But I already am strong, independent, and able to take on the world, and in a skirt to boot!


May 6, 2009 at 9:11 pm 2 comments

i get so mad…

Communication in the army sucks…. SUCKS!!  I don’t know if it is the caliber of people, or the way we are trained, or just certain people.   But it is close to implossible to get  a straight answer to a simple question.  Yesterday, I emailed my unit admin with some basic questions (it was actually a second email sent with the same question since the first wasn’t answered).  She emailed me back with the most confusing email… I wasn’t sure if I had to report to my unit on Saturday or Monday and she contradicted something she had previously told me.  I was so confused and so upset… if I had to be there Saturday, I would have to leave Friday (I live 6 hours away from my unit).  That would change and ruined a lot of plans, not to mention really affect how much packing and planning I got done before I left.  I sent her a very quick, pert email asking her to clarify and stating that I was very confused.  I was so upset that I ended up getting very little done last night, and I have a LOT to do!!

This morning, she responded, but still did not clearly answer my questions and proceeded to insult me by questioning my reasons for joining the army!!  First of all, that is not her business.  Second, how does that become part of a conversation about when to report?

I was sooo mad, I just wanted to call her and tell her that SHE made me not want to be part of the unit.  Luckily, she didn’t answer…   I did get a chance to talk to her later and clear things up.  I also slyly added that I was excited to get to NJ and that it would all be an adventure. 

That is only one instance of bad communication in the army.  The same communication issues were rampant in training, and they weren’t even over email!!  It is definitely something the military needs to work on.   I hope that is something I can possibly have  a hand in.

P.S. Dave says he is not amused [at my blogging].  GO CUBS GO!!!

April 28, 2009 at 11:00 pm 2 comments

Less than two weeks…

I just found out yesterday that I have less than two weeks before I leave for my first deployment.

When I first found out, I kinda freaked… I was a wreck!  And at work, none-the-less!  But just about 36 hours later, I am quite happy.  Of course there is a lot I am sad about… but from the pros & cons list I made yesterday, there is more to be positive about!

Here are the details:

  • Leave for training: May 4th
  • Training at:  Ft. Dix, NJ
  • Deployment Date:  June 7th
  • Deployment Length: 1 year
  • Deployed to:  Iraq, not sure where exactly yet
  • Job:  Psychological Operations Specialist
  • What does that mean?:  I will help develop US Army/Coalition materials for distribution to Iraq civilian population – similar to marketing.

My plan is to keep as many of my friends and family (and whomever else wants to follow) in the loop while deployed, and hopefully help you all understand what soldiers overseas really deal with.  I don’t know any of it myself yet, but this should be interesting!    Feel free to leave comments and questions!  I can’t wait to start this adventure… well, I can, but I don’t have much choice! 😛

April 21, 2009 at 11:05 am Leave a comment

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