Breast Pump Through Tricare

If you’re a spouse of an active-duty service member (or you’re in the military yourself), Tricare will pay 100% of the cost for a breast pump for expecting or new mothers. (Thank you Obama — this has been the law since 2013.)

I have Tricare Prime. Their policy on breast pumps are:

You need a prescription for it, and you’re only allow one pump per pregnancy (but you get up to 3 years of supplies for your pump, like storage bags for breast milk, etc.). The prescription also must state what kind of breast pump you’re eligible to get; whether it’s manual, electric, or hospital rental.

The best thing about Tricare’s breast pump coverage is that you can choose any brand you want, and from any retailer or supplier that accepts Tricare. It doesn’t matter if it cost $50 or $500, or if it’s a store-brand pump or a Medela, Tricare will pay for the whole thing.

I Google and went with a company in Ohio called 1NaturalWay; I read a Military.com article, and they had a sponsorship blurb in the article. I then read the reviews on their FB page.

It was easy enough to use, and fast service too… I already had my prescription on hand, so everything was done all in one morning. Shipping is free through regular USPS with tracking, arrives within a few days to a week (depending on where you’re shipping); definitely faster if you’re shipping in and around OH area — I did it Friday early morning, everything was approved and ready to ship by the afternoon, and delivered on Monday.

My only complaint is that I had four different people emailing me to send my prescription through various methods, and each time I submitted it, I got an email congratulating me and telling me my order has been approved by my insurance.

If you have your benefit number, you do not need to put your sponsor’s SS# (which, if you’re in DEERS, you should definitely not ever have a need to put it, since the beneficiary number is on the back of your military ID card) — just in case you’re worried or wondering about what personal info you need to fill out.

A bit of caution though, be sure of the brand you want, because you’re only allowed ONE pump per pregnancy; so if you ordered a Medela but decided the SpeCtra is better, you’re out of luck (and money) because Tricare won’t pay for another one — not even if it broke on its own, that’s something you’ll have to go through the manufacturer, and hopefully they have at least some sort of typical one year manufacturer’s warranty that will cover it. (In case you’re curious, I got the SpeCtra S2.)

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CPT. America

Congratulations to my hubby — he has earned his German proficiency badge, gold level.

To add on to his stellar Army career: the Army called while we were on our honeymoon last year to give him the Bronze Star Medal for his deployment in Afghanistan; he has completed Air Assault and Airborne, Ranger, and served with a LRS company; and he was recognized by the commanding general when he was at Fort Hood for earning his EIB (because he came in first for the 12-mile ruck march and Objective Bull)… oh, and earning his MBA.

Two more jumps and he’ll qualify for Jumpmaster (I am hoping he’ll be able to get his jumps in while we are at Campbell); I know he was disappointed that he wasn’t able to get two more jumps in before heading to Afghanistan — he would have gone to Pathfinder School if he hadn’t spent a month doing the selection process for SFAB at Bragg; but thank God because the branch manager called to tell us he has a choice of his top picks (Campbell or Hawaii).

We are all so proud of him. ♡

Ode to my hubby ♡

In a previous post, I wrote about overcoming disappointment — I’ve always said that God loves me the most…

My hubby was given his top two choices from his branch manager, Hawai’i or Kentucky. Now, I know you’re probably thinking that’s a no-brainer, but the thing is… Fort Campbell is only four hours from Cincinnati, where my hubby’s from… and it’s where I wanted to go.

I know he’s extremely disappointed, and he felt very much forced to give up Hawai’i — which I know is everyone’s top choice and an amazing opportunity; but I rather be closer to family with a new baby on the way. Also, it would have been very expensive for me to travel back to NYC like I do now, and the flight would have been like 17 hours long or more from HI.

Besides, Campbell is better for his career. He will most likely deploy to Iraq or Africa, and as an infantry officer he needs to be deployable to various locations… yet, I can’t help but have remorse, regret, and feel very guilty for making him give up Hawai’i.

I appreciate him so much for doing everything he can to make me happy, and I wish this didn’t make him so miserable. I know he feels like he’ll never get another chance at HI, but what are the odds that luck would have given him his top two choices anyway? It’s not as if we were choosing HI vs. any other location other than Campbell; I mean, of course then I would have said we’re definitely going to HI… but what happened was we didn’t even choose Hawai’i as an option originally.

See, I told him to not even list it as a choice for the branch manager because no one ever gets HI, so he put Campbell down as his first choice… but a few days later the branch manager called to tell him that there’s two available openings for him, Campbell and HI, and that he needed an answer ASAP (by the next morning).

He was already excited and intent on going to Hawai’i, and he told me on the phone that we had two choices to pick from, but he wouldn’t tell me what they were. When I came home, he gave me a list of pros/cons because it was unbelievable that we got our first choice and a top location choice to pick from.

We discussed it for over two hours, and eventually he gave in and I got what I wanted… but I know he feels a bit of regret and resentment for giving up Hawai’i to go somewhere like Ft. Campbell, KY. I love him so much for it though.

I told him that he can always hold it over me — if we get into a fight, he can always say: What about the time I gave up Hawai’i because you wanted to live in Kentucky!?

Grandpa ♡

Grandpa was one of the last few WWII veterans left. He was drafted at 18 years old towards the end of the war into the Army; he had wanted to enlist at 16 because his two older brothers were already drafted into the war and were MIA (thank God they were found after the war; one was with the Marines in the Pacific and injured during the Battle for Okinawa, but both were eventually accounted for). His oldest and youngest sons, Uncle Ed and Uncle Tom were both in the Airforce; with Uncle Ed being a pilot during Desert Storm.

He was very proud of his service. (Dan got to carry Grandpa’s flag from the Color Guard after the ceremony.) ♡

Identity Theft from Afghanistan to NY

The mister called. I’m not sure if it was because he missed me or if he thought he might get injured or killed today… they took IDF hits today. About 3 rockets coming from somewhere in the mountains, landing about a couple of hundred meters from their building. I won’t hear from him for 10-20 days while they’re doing whatever it is they’re doing over there — advising the Afghan army??? I mean, the coalition forces are gone, and anyone over there now is only on as “advisors”, right?

I couldn’t log on to Hulu. The subscription was put on hold… apparently someone stole his credit card information and bought over $500 worth of stuff at a Home Depot in NY. He got an alert from his credit card company about the charges, and called his credit card company on his phone to find out what was going on — I hate to think what that call cost! I’m thinking that this probably happened when he was buying his Afghan rug for a few hundred bucks! Don’t be fooled… just because they walk around with goats and live in tents doesn’t mean they’re not digitally savvy — how else do you explain all them IEDs that they rig up by pressing a button on their cell phone!?

He said that the thief tried out the card at a vending machine for $1 to see if it worked before going crazy at Home Depot… definitely a man, I mean, what woman would spend that kind of money at a store like that??? Besides, Home Depot is probably the place to shop if you’re wanting to build a home-made bomb with money that you stole out of a deployed officer’s credit card — without ever even having to go through their wallet!

It’s crazy. Before you used to have to worry about walking down a dark alley with your wallet… now people can rob you without even getting out of bed and in their underwear!

The Case of the Goat

The mister called today while I was at work, very unusual as he knows that I’m at work… I answered because I hardly get to talk with him. I figured it must be important. He called because he had a bad day.

His men were firing mortars today, and some Afghan nomads are claiming that their mortars burned down their tents and killed a goat (or goats???)… he’s stressed out about it because now there will be an investigation. The men think that the Afghans set their own tents on fire just so they could get compensation from the military. It’s hard to prove or disprove because the Army isn’t going to send CID to investigate on a goat. It could definitely be worse, they could be claiming civilian casualties or injuries.

I told him it’ll be a better day tomorrow. I’m sure it’s not the first time that occupied people are claiming dead goats via military fires. I told him to be careful for what he wished for… he wanted to get on this deployment roster.

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The Midnight Call

I haven’t heard from the mister in a week. Yesterday, after we came back from dinner I fell asleep… I had the dryer running for 10 hours! The weekends are my time to catch up on sleeping because I never get enough sleep during the week days.

At midnight, I hear the Skype ring on my phone. (Thank God, and Microsoft, for Skype!) I was so happy I didn’t miss his call. It was about 9AM in Afghanistan, and he had to go PT soon. We talked about my new school, how much I hate the commute, my neighbor Frank, the kids in my class… and the usual I love you and I miss you like 10x back and forth to each other.

I’ve been sleeping with my elephant ever since he’s left. I wanted to tell him to watch Better Late Than Never, it’s hilarious.

Baghran

The mister text me super early this morning. For some odd reason I went to sleep around midnight and woke up around 3AM. Why???

He told me they’re flying to their FOB today, and they took some rocket hits in Baghran, but thankfully no one got hurt.

I try to text his mom with updates because he usually spends his free time just texting me instead. They were stuck in Kuwait for a few days because the heat was so bad that their flight was cancelled due to the plane being too hot, making it too heavy to fly.

The guys had left last week, and it was also the day that I got my essay results for my license. Sometimes I feel bad when I send his mom updates because I don’t want his family to feel ignored by him or second place, but I think they would rather know what’s going on with him over there than had no update at all about him.

Every day he sends me a text to tell me that he loves me and misses me. He’s definitely my motivator when I get out of bed at 05:30, and leave the house at 06:20, just to get to work around 07:30… ugh, I haven’t done an hour commute for work since I worked in NYC! I only signed a one year contract with the school district, and we’re preparing for Georgia next summer. (I’ve never been to the peach state before!) ♡