Thursday, November 15, 2012

Wishin' and Hopin' and Thinkin' and Prayin'...

This is big. In the next four weeks (or, really, any length of time as the Navy sees fit), John will get his next orders for his station after deployment, and we'll start planning our move to Wherever the Navy Sends Him, USA (or Not USA, who knows?).  The possibilities are almost endless, which is a freeing and absolutely terrifying idea. We have done our share of talking about possibilities, figuring out our dream locations and our least favorites, as I'm sure all couples do. But, until November hit, I'd really tried to not to think about stations and orders and PCS-ing and all of that stuff that I know nothing, absolutely nothing, about.

There's really nothing to do but wait and let some guy (or gal) in an office somewhere decide our fate for the next three years. For John, this decision is also the decision of when, where, how, and if he'll deploy again. For me, it means updating my resume, weighing career paths and options, and contemplating life after Summer 2013.

It is absolutely mind-boggling to think how much of my life will change over the course of four weeks in less than a year. So many of the changes that most sane people spread out over a few months or years, we'll hit at warp-speed. I'll go from single to married. From a Pennsylander (since my life straddles Pennsylvania and Maryland at the present) to a I-Have-No-Idea-What-er. From a drive of two hours to my parents to a drive (or flight) of Who-the-Heck-Knows. And, most likely, from employed to jobless. John will deal with reintegration, a new job, and a crazy wife.

But then again, it's par for the course. We never seem to do anything normally or easily. We seem to seek out (or rather, are sought out by) extreme situations. If there were a competition at the X-Games for Extreme Decisions, we might not take gold, but we'd get on the podium. I couldn't just be a teacher. I just had to work in a school in one of the most difficult systems in the country. John's deployment just couldn't be an average one; instead, it just had to be longer. We couldn't just date each other after our first date seven years ago; we just had to fall out of contact and then start our relationship during all of the crazy of John's first year in the Navy. It's comical. Of course the biggest changes in our life would all come down to four summer weeks. I wouldn't expect anything less than an extreme version of that, either. At least I know that we're fighters and survivors.

That's really what life's about, though, isn't it? There's always a choice-- sit back and let it happen to you, or take charge and make it your own.

For now, there's nothing to do but wait... and wait... and wait... until some guy in an office somewhere clicks a button and solidifies our fate for the next three years. And then, I can either buckle in and hold on, or strap on a helmet and lean into the curves. I'll be leaning. Hard.

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