Wendy Poling
Frequent Contributor

As both Chazz and Briana have shared in their previous posts, USAA is currently running a campaign that asks its members to share their personal story in just Six Words. Sharing your life story in just six words is tricky. It has me thinking, would I be funny or creative or serious when picking the tone of my six words?


How would you tell your personal story in Six Words?


Military life isn't for everyone; it's unpredictable and there are many things we have no control over. The sacrifice is great and the pace is fast. We experience the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. Especially when my spouse is "over there", living without fear is something that I work on everyday. In a world where we don't always get to control our surroundings, the places we live or even the schools our children attend, it is easy to live cautiously. The opposite side of that equation is we know first hand how precious life is, the importance of making friends fast and we learn to live in the moment. Fear can also creep in and cause us to stay in our own world and isolate, especially after a big transition like a cross-country move or during an especially lonely deployment. What I do know for sure is when I cast away self-doubt, pursue my passions and dare to make a difference in the lives of others, a funny thing happens - my energy increases, my perspective brightens and my creativity goes up.


Experiencing the military lifestyle we all can get caught up in our own issues or stresses of the day and start to feel like we are alone in our struggles. Maintaining an attitude of thankfulness can put our troubles into perspective and realize we have more than we need, are rich in love and overflowing in blessings. Being thankful for the little things can put everything into proper perspective. When I have an attitude of gratitude, I find myself trusting something greater than myself. My Faith is what keeps me grounded and steady when the outside influences try to create chaos in my life.


How would you tell your story in Six Words?


Here are some of my favorite phrases shared by other USAA members:

Extraordinary moments in an ordinary life - Richandkristi
Retired, wild, happy, free -thanks USAA! - Nappygranee
From the worst, comes the best - Beastwheels


When it comes to picking my six words, I had thought about picking: Faith, Love, Family, Helping Others, Encourager. In the end it was so hard to decide.


Here are the Six Words that tell my personal story:


Living with gratitude and without fear


These two concepts are a foundation for following my dreams and making a difference.


My military life story includes moving three times in the past six years. Having the opportunity to work as a civilian for the Army, Air Force and as a contractor for the Navy. I've had one military marriage not survive. I learned to pick up the pieces and move forward. Learned to love again and build a new a life. I've learned to appreciate all the opportunities this military life has offered me despite the struggles of saying goodbye to friends, getting kids settled into new schools, continuing higher education goals and starting my career over. After all, these experiences have all brought me right here to this point in time.


Gary Allan said it best when he said, "This is right where I need to be."


What six words tell your story?


I encourage you to share your personal six-word story on this blog.


Related story:

Pursuing Beautiful Dreams; Service, Friendship, Fulfillment - Inside the Mission Blog