Growing up as a Military Bart

Growing up as a Military Bart

I can remember my first day at Fayetteville Christian Academy. I was four years old and Ms. Perry was my teacher. The day I arrived, I remember Ms. Perry saying I was her twelfth disciple because I was the last student in the class. I arrived late in the year, the other eleven students started at the beginning of the class. My family moved from Germany and my parents were now stationed at Fort Bragg North Carolina.
To give you a little history of my life, I was born in Heidelberg, Germany in the Heidelberg Military Hospital on Nachrichenten Kaserne which has since closed. I was not only a military brat of one parent, both of my parents are military retired, SFC (RET) Vivian Harper-Hampton and MSG (RET) John Hampton.
One thing you learn at a early age as a military Brat is how to adapt. I’ve lived and I went to School in Fayetteville, North Carolina (Fort Bragg, North Carolina), Heidelberg Germany ( My mother was assigned to 30th Medical Command), Elizabethtown Kentucky (Fort Knox Kentucky) , New Kent, Virginia (Fort Lee, Virginia) and now boarding school, at Fork Union Military Academy, Fork Union Virginia. There’s no way I could have been successful without being able to adapt to a new environment. Some of the values my parent enstool in me at a young age were Integrity, discipline, loyalty, respect honor and selfless service. As military brat’s attending school abroad, we all lived these values.
Growing up in a military family wasn’t easy at times, but as I grew, I found ways to cope. The greatest copping meganessmis was knowing you were not alone, most of my friends were facing the same problems. This allowed us to depend on each other.
Staring a new school, making new friends, and getting caught up with class work was always tiresome as well as difficult. What made it easier was when I would meet other military brats because we were going through life in a similar way. We, the sons and daughters of military parents that would end up getting close, because our parents were deployed or on a field training exercise. For instance, my mom would become friends with another woman whose husband got deployed and they would have that commonality and it was nice, sort like having an extended family. I’ve formed a brotherhood of military friends over the years.
One thing I learned growing up with military parents was respect. I learned how to respect my elders, my teachers, my classmates, and team mates. Saying, ‘Sir’ or “Ma’am was instilled in me.’ It was definitely something that both my parents ingrained in me, and I’m glad they did, because it has served me well in life thus far.
Brats are taught to be independent, to work hard, and to take the opportunity to work hard even if it doesn’t look like an opportunity for growth. I got enough practice shaking hands and making small talk that by the time I made it to the ruthless social experiment that is life after primary school, networking was easy. Brats learn the value of connections, and because they’ve done long-distance relationships growing up, they can keep those connections without too much strain.
Military brats have seen and experienced more of the world than most other kids, and have a great appreciation for history. We have a collection of stories and gems from different locations that other kids are not afforded the opportunity by living in one place their whole lives.
We have different ideologies, we try different foods, and appreciate different forms of art. As a result, we develop intellectually and ideologically rounded views of the world.
Diversity is a big part of our lives, experiences of a military community allows military brats growing up to appreciate the differences of perspectives, different dietary traditions, and heathy completion in sports. Now that I’m older I give these experiences the credit of allowing me to view other things like political differences with a greater sense of appreciation and respect.

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