When December ends, we have the chance to reflect on the past year and see how we want to move forward in the upcoming year. And on New Year’s Day, military families can decide what family resolutions they want to set for the new year. It’s one way we can establish a common goal to work toward even though the family may not be together for parts of the year.
Family spoke with Marissa Bolado to gather insight into how military families can best make resolutions that will stick. Bolado was an Army spouse for 15 years, and she now resides in Fountain, Colorado. For Bolado, having New Year’s resolutions and following through with them is crucial to maintaining personal growth and mental well-being. It’s also a chance for her and her family to fulfill their passion for helping others.
How do you and your family decide and set New Year’s resolutions?
“This year our family is learning how to adjust to the new normal. Big sister, Marison (18), is in North Dakota with her dad SSG Matthew Wentling. She is pursuing her culinary degree. And Kaleb (12) and I chose to remain in Colorado. He loves playing TCG Pokémon. Plus, he plays baseball, loves to skate, and is passionate about playing the drums.
“Our family dynamics create a space for us to have open conversations about going about life after the military. 2023 will be a year to work on communicating our individual and family needs and how we can each give back to our community. In 2022, we decided to step back from constantly being on the go. It gives us the time to focus on our mental and emotional health.”
How do you follow up and keep your resolutions throughout the year?
“We went and purchased fancy calendars to fill out. Ironically, we tend to buy them but then don’t fill them out. Knowing this, in 2022, we ended up working more on personal goals. Over the years, we found the resolutions became rigid, which is not why we made them.
“Personally, I love serving the military community. And that will always be a part of my yearly goals and resolutions. Wherever there is a need for support, I will reach out to those organizations. Because of my experience, I am able to see how that bridge can be built to fill the gap.”
In 2018, Bolado was named the Fort Benning Armed Forces Insurance Military Spouse of the Year. Plus, her family was named the Center of Excellence Volunteer Family of the Year. Both honors came shortly after her team of volunteers with Operation Homefront earned the prestigious honor of being named Non-Profit of The Year not once, but twice. These honors were a huge accomplishment and showed just how great of an impact this organization had in their continued support for Fort Benning and the families it served.
As of right now, Bolado is currently serving in a variety of positions that help her accomplish her desire for helping military families. She is the Vice President of Family Programs with The Pikes Peak Chapter of The Association of the US Army, a Kiwanis of Fountain Valley Strategic Ambassador, a Volunteer with Care and Share Food Bank for Southern Colorado, a Member of the South East Food Insecurities Council, a Volunteer with The Warriors Redistribution Center on Fort Carson, a Giving Tuesday Military Ambassador, and lastly, a Team Captain for Operation Homefront. These opportunities help her not only reach military families but also help her uphold her annual New Year’s resolutions.