After Amanda Huffman left the Air Force in 2013 after 6 years of service, she traded in combat boots for a diaper bag. But the change from full-time Airman to stay-at-home-mom wasn’t smooth or easy. Amanda felt adrift and without purpose.
“I needed something because I was going crazy being a stay at home mom,” she says. “I lost my identity when I left the military. I needed something to do for me outside of taking care of my son.
During her deployments, Amanda had loved writing letters home, creating a record of her experiences on active duty for herself and her family. Jumping off from there, she launched Airman to Mom to help people understand her journey and build a community of support.
“For a long time, I didn’t want to write about being a veteran” Amanda explains. “I tried to write about travel and be a mom blogger. People were more interested in that stuff.”
Air Force Veteran Shares Stories of Women in the Military
In 2017, she found her mission and her voice sharing the stories of fellow female service members and veterans. That year, Amanda launched a 31-day series focusing on publishing women’s military stories.
“I started collecting deployment stories in 2017 for a 31-day series focused on deployments,” she shares. “I ended getting responses from primarily women and I was fascinated by their stories.”
This one 31-day blogging series was the launching pad for Amanda’s book and podcast.
“I wanted to hear more stories,” she says. “A friend suggested that I just do it as yearly series and just do one a week. Then we started talking about podcasting.”
Sharing Female Veterans’ Stories Becomes a Mission
One thing led to another and in 2018 Amanda took the next step.
“I took all my original interviews and turned them into the book, Women of the Military, which is on Amazon. A lot of those are anonymous. A lot of them are still in the military or have hard stories they don’t want to share publicly.”
Amanda launched her podcast, Women of the Military, in 2019. Initially, women seemed hesitant to share their honest stories of military service.
Some are still on active duty. Others have tender or intensely private stories that they don’t want shared publicly.
“Only two of my original interviews wanted to be on the podcast. Now I have people knocking down my door to be on the podcast!”
Supporting Female Veterans & Future Service Members
Amanda’s main mission is to show that women serve fiercely and proudly. Doing this work feeds her soul and fuels her passion to collect more stories.
“I love to learn and it filled me up. I loved to learn about the history of the military and women’s history.”
Sign up to share your story on the Women of the Military podcast!
Podcasts listeners include current and former military members, as well as those considering military service.
Whoever is listening, Amanda’s goal is to show the many ways that women serve the United States.
“I want people to know that the reason why women are doing what they are doing today is because of what women have done (in the past),” Amanda explains. “Women have been doing all this stuff. We could go into places that men couldn’t go because we’re women, so the military changed the policies.”
So many of the stories on Amanda’s podcast dispell myths about what women can or can’t do. Sharing these experiences might help other women consider military service.
“Sometimes when you are a woman and you say you want to join the military, your family says ‘No,'” she explains. (It’s r)eally good to connect (with) the next generation with women who have served. (The podcast) helps the young women who are looking to join find resources and connections.”
Amanda hopes that by listening to the podcast, everyone will learn more about the true history of women in the military.
“(It’s c)orrecting people when they say things you know aren’t true. I think by listening to the podcast, they’ll learn a lot of the history of women in the military.”