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A Q & A With Military Kids - Little Legacies

A Q & A With Military Kids - Little Legacies

The team at Legacy Kids knows it is important for military kids to be able to relate to one another. When we hear about another’s experiences, we start to feel a sense of belonging. It is within that belonging that we find community, and in the case of military-connected individuals, a shifting community. In this space, children will find that transitions are common, change is inevitable – and resilience is the outcome. This week we get to hear from the resilient Charley Yates, Evon Yates, and Kiley Atkins and their take on life as a military kid.

What is your favorite/least favorite part about being a military child?

Charley & Evon:

Most favorite – Seeing new places, traveling and making new friends, the adventure -“we live a crazier life than most people”.  Also, moving and scrapbooks (one of our favorite things over the years that we continue to add to)

Least favorite – leaving our friends and church (but we do have new “framily” wherever we go)

Kiley:

Most favorite - Getting discounts

Least favorite - Moving so much.

 

What do you wish others knew about the experience?

Charley & Evon:

  1. People think it is such a bad thing to move so much and it is not. We have had so many cool experiences.
  2. Military kids can make friends fast – it is a great skill! Sometimes, it is hard to make friends with kids who are not military because they do not make friends the same way.
  3. Growing up is different than civilian kids, but neither one of them is bad, they are simply different.

Kiley:

You never get used to all the moving around and trying to start your life over.

 

What advice would you give to the parents of military children?

Charley & Evon:

Do not freak out because then your kids will freak out.

Make it fun for them – like we do a “treasure hunt” when we move, looking for the house, church, and friends God has for us.

Include the kids in looking for houses and other transitions.

If you have young kids, there are older milkids around who would be happy to babysit!

Kiley:

Give your children more grace, let them grieve if they need to and be patient with them. Give them a little more freedom. Ask your kids how they feel more often. 

 

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself?

Charley & Evon:

Be bolder in making friends.

Even if it is not a place you want to go, look up the place you are headed and get excited. There will be fun adventures (you may already know someone that already lives there!).

Kiley:

Do not fight with your parents about moving overseas because you will meet your best friend there. 

 

What has been helpful/unhelpful throughout your journey?

Charley & Evon:

Unhelpful – When family overreacts when we move to a new place. Instead, try to be a part of decisions - like what we pack (going with us, storage, and unaccompanied baggage), where we might live, etc. Even if they do not make the decision, they just like to be included.

Helpful – when family comes visit so we can share with them where we live.

Kiley:

It helps to know other kids who are in your shoes, so you don’t feel so alone. Sometimes, there are people who do not understand what we go through or how we feel being a military kid and can make comments out of ignorance and it has been hurtful or upsetting. Trying to fit in can be difficult also.

 

Do you have a favorite family memory or tradition?

Charley & Evon:

Traditions: Going out to eat on Christmas Eve and leaving an extra-large tip, sausage balls for Christmas breakfast, paper hearts on floor for Valentine’s Day, balloons on the floor for birthdays, green milk on St Patty’s Day. Also, all things that we have been able to keep – even in hotels!

Memory: Traveling in Europe especially when we went with friends and stayed in an Airbnb together. We loved walking miles and miles and exploring big cities, traveling with friends in Europe. One time, our stuffed animal got thrown out the window onto the canopy of the restaurant below (minor catastrophe).

Kiley:

Tradition: Donut day every Saturday 

Memory: Going to Venice while living in Germany

 

Cheers to these three for providing so much insight!

   

  

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