Moving in the Time of COVID: A Journal

June 24, 2020 Today, we left for the Washington Dulles International Airport, my family’s first stop on our PCS to Camp Humphreys, South Korea. I, again, had to leave so many great people that I have come to know. While I was very sad, I was also looking forward to life at Camp Humphreys. We had just left Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and were on the road, heading towards Dulles. Leaving everyone behind is easily the worst part about moving. I was in the car with my sisters and they were crying. So much for a quiet car ride. My parents decided to stop at this really neat taco place for dinner. "Kiddos, masks on." The restaurant was near empty due to the virus, the city around us was near silent. T

Dogs In the Military!

Dogs play a big part in the functionality of the military! Read to learn how and how you can give back to these courageous canines.

America Isn't Perfect, But...

It was a sunny, seemingly perfect late summer afternoon in 2012 when I lost some of the childhood innocence unique to oblivious children at the hands of horror and heartbreak. My brother, TJ, and I were home with our babysitter as my mom was out running errands and my dad was on a work trip. That afternoon we had drawn with chalk on the front driveway, watched many episodes of Scooby-Doo, and had pizza bagels for lunch. It was as we were sitting at the kitchen table, filling out our weekly reading logs, that I heard the garage door rum open, a car door slam, and muffled sobs. My mom, who has always been a role model when it comes to composure in rough times, had mascara running down her ey

My Perfectly Problematic Pandemic PCS

Hello dear readers! I am very excited to share my recent moving story. It had its ups and downs but was overall pretty decent. This move was different for many reasons, including the fact that it's the last move for my family since my dad will be retiring soon. Civilian life here we come! It all started in May. We were getting everything ready, the tenants had moved out of our house, and we were in the middle of our pre-move prep. We started cleaning the house and going through our belongings, the usual spring cleaning. I like to call it The Cleansing because we pretty much go through every box and bin and drawer we own and throw out trash and get rid of things we haven’t touched since we fi

My Greatest Challenge as a Military Child

Picture credit: My mom made this for a KinderJam blog. Alright, here's a disclaimer: This article is kind of depressing because I got really emotional while writing it, but that's life. If you're looking for something to relate to on a personal level, this is for you. If you're already sad, mad, or "smad" about your life and want to be cheered up, I would suggest reading another article. Happy reading! “Freedom isn’t free - thank a military child”. This quote is inscribed on a wooden plaque hanging above the couch in my living room. Underneath the phrase, there is a picture of my three-year-old brother holding hands with my dad who is in his flight suit going to the airport for a six-month d

Making Friends After Moving

One of the worst things about being a military teen is the necessity of moving often - and one of the worst things about moving is leaving friends behind and ending up in a new place with no familiar faces. Is there perhaps a simple way to have an easier time finding new friends? Although a lot about making friends depends on what kind of person you are, there's a few general things I've learned from my experience as a military teen that could potentially help those of you moving somewhere new this summer. First of all (this is obvious), go do things with other people, rather than just hanging out alone around your house all day. If you're athletic, join a school sports team; if you're music

Still Strong: A Reminder that the World Hasn’t Fallen Apart (And How to Remember It)

It wouldn’t be very controversial to say that 2020 has thus far been kind of a bummer. Our good ole US of A has been the subject of political unrest, wildfires in California, the tragic death of Kobe Bryant, and murder hornets (although we haven’t heard from them in a while…). But perhaps more than any of these things is the elephant in the room that is COVID-19. The virus has taken friends and family away from us and forced people worldwide to seriously change their lifestyle. Schools and many other institutions are shut down, and the simple act of going out with friends presents a potential risk. Mostly we have been made to stay in our homes. Needless to say, it’s not hard to get a bleak o

Advice from a Previously Shy and Anxious Military Kid: Learning to Adapt to these New Changes

As the weeks draw nearer and nearer to what I hope is our upcoming school year, it becomes planting season for lots of military kids. It’s time for us to plant new roots and start over. New year, new friends, new school. Every year, we all go through it. We must learn to adapt and change to this new environment we’ve been thrown into. For some of us, this is much more challenging than what might be expected. Growing up, I was as shy as shy kids come. I often spent my time alone, finding my own ways to entertain myself. I found it hard to talk to other kids and even though I had some friends, I was nowhere near as social as the other kids my age. When I was little, I thought nothing of it. As

The Basic Civic Duty of a Military Child

It always bothered me when someone thanked me for my service. It happened in every setting: at passport control upon entering the United States, after using my military ID for a discount, or simply if someone found out my dad worked for the Army. It was always “thank you for your service” or “thank you for your family’s service," never “thank you for your father’s service." It bothered me because I don’t really do much; I just PCS when I’m told to, and get to enjoy the comforts of DoD education, Popeyes, and the military lounge at airports. I don’t have to deploy, wake up for PT, or carry out exercises in the field. My sacrifices are minuscule; I don’t serve. Or at least I thought I didn’t.

Six Reasons to ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY Appreciate Being a Military Teen

Notice the title of this article. When preparing to write this at 12:16 at night with a cup of tea and Flavor Blasted Goldfish, I was planning on having the word "love" where "appreciate" now stands. But, how insensitive would that be? How could I turn a blind eye to all the friends I've left, the states I've loved, the schools that most benefited me, and the hard lessons learned? Instead I chose the word "appreciate" because not only am I a glass-half-full kind of girl, but I also believe in and recognize the many blessings being a military kid has brought me. In the case that you struggle with finding these things, allow me shine a light on a few I thought up. 1) Stories and experiences (T

Bloom ZOOM Backgrounds

In honor of back to school season, we here at Bloom have cooked up a little surprise for all of you. Many of us are going back to school virtually this year, so we made some Bloom Zoom backgrounds! We have four different Bloom Zoom backgrounds for you to download and use in your Zoom classes this year! To download, click the links below! (If that doesn't work, right click on the image and choose "Save Image/Video As..." to save to your computer!) 1) Garden Bloom Zoom Background Click HERE to download the Garden Bloom Zoom Background! 2) Pink Flowers Bloom Zoom Background Click HERE to download the Pink Flowers Bloom Zoom Background! 3) Proud Military Brat Bloom Zoom Background Click HERE to

Oh, High School Kiddos

As a rising college freshman, I am about to close this chapter of my life. The beautiful, heart-wrenching, yet life-changing experiences that I have been blessed to have. It was just another typical Thursday, but it was spent packing up my room to go to my next destination: college. And we all know that when we start packing, emotions start overwhelming our thought process. Some of you know me as the girl who cries too much during Vida Nueva, a few of you might know me as the girl who takes too many notes for a lecture we won't even have a quiz on, others might even consider me the "mom friend." But anyone who knows me knows for a fact I WILL keep ANYTHING someone gives me for the sentimenta

The Struggle of College Applications

What is the most annoying question to a high schooler? As a rising senior, the most annoying question I get asked is, “Where are you going to college?” First off, I have yet to be accepted into any colleges, or even applied to any. Secondly, I have no idea what I even want to major in college.  Lastly, I have no idea where I even want to apply to! There are over four thousand colleges in the United States. So many choices of where I could go, and I need to pick one? When I talk to all of my friends about their applications, they have everything figured out. They already know the college they want, the major and minor, and even what color bedding in their dorm room. It seems like everyone wen

Post Schools vs. Civilian Schools: What's the Difference?

As a military kid, I've lived in a lot of different houses in many very different neighborhoods and towns. An interesting factoid about my military experience is that I’ve only lived on-post once, at Fort Huachuca. Because of this, I have a lot of experience going to school off-post, and I can tell you based on my experience that it is quite different than attending on-post schools. Maybe you’re a military kid about to be attending an off-base school for the first time, or vice-versa. Here, I've shared my observations in the hopes that you can have a better idea of what to expect. We all know how nerve-racking going to a new school can be, especially if it’s different than what you're used t

Not Up to Standard: Stories of High School Transcript Issues

The main problem with moving from school to school isn't anything that has to do solely with us, but the policies and practices of our schools. I'm sure we've all heard our parents complaining about how the school you are leaving or the school you are going to isn't being very helpful in the transfer of our transcripts. This is an important part of moving to a new school, as it not only mandates what classes you will take, but also gives the school a sense of what type of student you are, and what you are capable of doing. However, since nothing is ever as simple as it sounds, transcripts are one of the largest issues faced when it comes to transferring schools. Some schools don't want to ac

Bloom takes pride in being a safe platform for military kids to share their stories and be empowered. All of the opinions/beliefs expressed in articles belong solely to the author and are not a reflection of the views of the founders and editors of Bloom. Additionally, we understand the struggles and emotions of being a military child, but are not a mental health resource and are therefore unequipped to administer advice and assistance in that area. If you or a loved one are suffering from depression, abuse, or trauma, please visit our Resources page to find help.

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