In the past week, we heard from young brats and young-at-heart brats, and from dedicated individuals who are making a difference for military families. We look forward to bringing you one story at a time, aimed to encourage, inspire, and honor military children, their parents, and the communities where they reside — until the next change of station. Today our chapter in BRATLAND comes to us from a former active duty member, military spouse and mother of three brats.
Dr. Mari is also a long-time friend to Hope Matters.
A Doctor’s Welcome to a Healthy New Land: Bratland!
Bratland. I like the name. Military brats everywhere will recognize it and feel at home. On behalf of Hope Matters, welcome to a cybernetic home to nurture you!
I had the privilege of serving at a special operations base for three years as a military physician. I cared for countless families that endured the changes and challenges of deployment more times than they’d planned. I was one of the docs blessed to assess the soldiers prior to those deployments. I sent them off with words of blessing (and heartfelt prayers!), and then I cared for the spouses and children they left behind—for a time.
During those three years, as I helped those soldiers and families cope with constant change, I went through significant changes in my personal and professional life as well. They were the most challenging and also the most joyful years, for it was during that time that I began to rely on God as my foundation and lifeline. In a very basic way, I owe my very life to that stretching time in the military. Perhaps you feel the same way.
I remember many faces and stories from those years in the military, and I especially recall feeling like I’d never been around so many brave people in one place. The amount of sacrifice and selfless giving of time and talent was impressive. I also remember fondly a Staff Sergeant who helped me ensure our clinic remained fully accredited during our service there. His professionalism, integrity, and hard work were a blessing and gift as well as a hopeful reminder that heroism is very often hidden from the spotlight.
I am thankful for people like Maryann and the team at Hope Matters who understand the unique needs of military families, especially children. Her stories, articles, and interviews are always full of hope, encouragement, and practical tips to keep people on a healthy path emotionally, physically, and spiritually. As a physician who strives to care for the soul and minister to the spirit while treating the body, I find places like Bratland and Hope Matters to be streams of health and wholeness. I recommend a daily dose!
During my years on active duty, I gained a tremendous amount of respect and admiration for the sacrifices made by young people to defend the freedoms we all enjoy. I know that Bratland will be a positive and encouraging place that gives something back to you. We thank you for your service and will always feel proud and blessed to serve you.
Amaryllis Sánchez Wohlever, MD
Author, Walking with Jesus in Healthcare
Translator & Copyeditor, Hope Matters