I had to travel to MN with my oldest son last week. On the plane coming back, I sat down next to a young man who looked haggard and frayed! He was on his cell phone and I couldn't help listening to the conversation. Let's face it, cell phone conversations from the next seat in the plane are impossible NOT to listen in on! His conversation was obviously with a moving company as he was setting up a time for the initial assessment.
Well.....couldn't pass that up! So, I asked him the obvious conversation opener, "So, you're moving? How exciting!" Apparently he didn't think so. He looked at me as if I had just grown 10 heads. "Exciting? Not hardly. I've never moved before and I'm at the end of my rope!!" Ahhhh, a soul in need of some good old fashioned military spouse education!
As is my military spouse duty, I immediately began to work on the important moving details first - FEED THEM! "No, really!" I said as he looked at me with skepticism and doubt. Have donuts there when they arrive and ask them what they want on their pizza for lunch. I assured him the paybacks in saved furniture replacement were well worth the cost.
I think it was then that he took me seriously, because he took out his pad of paper and began writing down every word out of my mouth as if it were gospel. Which, of course, it was because I simply began a methodical regurgitation of all the advise I've come across on our blog!!!! I felt like a SpouseBUZZ public service announcement!
We ended with me talking about Minneapolis (he was moving there from New York - gads!) and all the wonderful things about the city and the people who live there. How exciting it is to move to a new location and all the things I love about every move.
When we finished speaking - turbulence at some point does prohibit friendly banter - he thanked me for all my pearls of wisdom and said that he felt much better about the move and much more prepared to start the next adventure in his life. He even said that he was looking forward to the move!
So... I've been thinking that all these experiences we gather as military spouses really are useful for the public at large. Moving, home repair, separations, homecomings - you name it! This military spouse stuff really does help us support our fellow citizens. Have you ever felt that your military experiences are 'public service announcement' moments!??!