Tamika Diaz

by Stripes Korea
Stripes Korea

Name: Tamika Diaz
Age: 32
Years in Service: 8
Rank: Sergeant
Years as Mom: 14
Children: Journi, 14; Survis, 6
Current Duty Station and Job: Yongsan. NCOIC at the JMMT postal Sergeant

Q. What are your key responsibilities at work?
A. I am responsible for training, supervising and mentoring two NCOs who have nice soldiers amongst them. I work at the Joint Military Mail Terminal (JMMT) in Incheon. I enforce the mail procedures, preserving the integrity of the mail that comes in and out of the country. I ensure the mail is dispatched to the various APO post offices with zero delay and free of incidents. And the outbound mail is processed expeditiously by class of mail to their respective locations.

Q. What are your key responsibilities at home?
A. Besides ensuring their basic needs are met, having daughters that are 8 years apart they don’t always share the same interest. I make time to spend with each of them separately, focusing on their individual interests and doing what they like. Journi is into shopping, getting her nails and hair done or just watching you-tube. Sur’vis enjoys playing outdoors and playing with her dolls.

Q. How do you balance work and family?
A. I pray! And of course Journi is my rock. She has been my biggest supporter during my tour here in Korea. She helps me out tremendously, whether picking up her sister from the CDC, or helping her with homework. What gets me through both roles as a parent and a Soldier is incorporating the two without combining them. Meaning, when I am work, the mission is always first. However, I am able to connect with my soldiers because my maternal instincts kick in often: “You know, moms knows everything.” So I am able to detect the good things and no so good things, I am able to tap into my empathetic side if need be. Being a leader, there is no on or off switch. So, when I am at home, my girls and I discuss our day every evening. By doing so, I get a glimpse into their world with school and their interaction with friends. By me sharing my day, they get a better understanding of my role as a soldier, so when I have to go in on an off day or break from having family time to take a call, they get it. Lastly, personal time. Moms need “me time” to just love on themselves, too. Whether it’s lying in bed all day lol, or getting my hair done, I make time to relax, regroup my thoughts, refocus and reinforce my plans.

Q. How do you keep in touch with family when you are TDY or deployed?

A. I am vocal; I enjoy making phones calls because it’s personal connection for me. I love hearing my families’ West Indian accents when I call, it’s very nostalgic
for me. It takes me back down memory lane of our lives back in our birth island of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. And hearing my voice, comforts them knowing I am doing Okay.

Q. How does the military community support you?
A. The Child and Youth School Service has been a big support for me here in Yongsan. I depend on their Before and After School Program to facilitate taking Survis to and from school, as well as keeping her safe until I am off work.

Q. What’s the best part of being a military mom?
A. For me, it’s the ability to be an individual, a woman with financial freedom, it gives me independence and an opportunity to serve my country. Then add mother to that, that’s a very Power Woman. So the best part for me would be the strength both roles have given me to combat and conquer all Life’s experiences.

Q. What do you want for Mother’s Day?
A. Journi, girl I hope your reading this lol Mommy wants pajamas.

Q. Anything else you’d like to add?
A. I would like to wish all Mothers, a Happy Mother’s day. Though the journey is never easy, but nothing good ever is. Keep the faith, stay strong, and keep trotting on.

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