A Lot Can Change In 36 Hours


For 36 hours, we were PCSing unexpectedly this summer.

Upon hearing the news, I had the same type of freak-out that Erin had when she learned they were PCSing from Germany. (Incidentally, this remains my favorite PCS post ever.)

As I lifted my hand off the receiver, a panic rushed over me. OH. MY.GOD. We are leaving Germany. Where am I going to work? What are wegoing to do? The poor dogs! They will be so traumatized on the plane!What about all of my stuff? I need to have a garage sale. Maybe I'llsell it all on eBay. Or maybe I'll consign it at the thrift store. Idefinitely can't keep the entertainment center. My Polish potterybetter make it there. I need to go to Poland one last time. Do I stillwant to join the Army? There's no snow in Texas, right? I hope not. I'msick of this weather. I bet there's like four Walmarts at Fort Hood.When should we ship the truck? SHOULD we ship the truck? When will I goto Seattle for Meghan's wedding? We leave June 1st, and she getsmarried in August. Do I fly to Fort Hood and then to Seattle? Or shouldI just fly to Seattle from Germany, and then drive my new truck to FortHood? If I go to Seattle early, do I get a job for two months? Or do Icontinue to sponge off my husband and my mom? Eww. I don't want to deepclean this house. I can't wait to go to Walmart. Ahhh. Target. I haveso many projects to finish. The baby sweater. The quilt. The dogpillow. The scrapbook. The scrapbooky-type picture frame thingy. Shouldwe rent a house for $700/mo? Or pay an $800 mortgage on a house we cancall ours? I need to call Sarah. I need to call Kelly. Where are theygoing? What am I going to do without them? Maybe we can all go to CapeMay next year. And Peoria the next. Just girls. And then Seattle. Orthey can come to Fort Hood. I'll have a big enough house. I need tolose weight. Especially if we are living in Texas. Heat and fat rollsdon't mix. I want to wear flip-flops in February. Maybe we can go seeDad and Marie on the weekends. But what would we do with the dogs? Howoften can we see Savannah? Will she want to come to our house? Will shestill like me? Will she like the dogs? Gosh, she's growing up so fast.Wow, I sound like my parents. I'm dreading the flight. I need to startusing more spices when I cook. Who knows if they'll actually ship them.Do we have enough money saved up? Maybe we should just stay here. Sike.Breathe in, breathe out.

I started worrying about selling our house in a mere three months. I started worrying about landscaping, painting, and storage facilities. I started to have a mental garage sale.

I also started to freak out because we weren't PCSing to a post I particularly wanted to move to. I started trying to psyche myself up for the good things about going there: living closer to AWTM, trying out a new fertility clinic, and even cold weather, which I hate but it's a better fit for my knitting obsession than the South is. I tried hard not to think about the bad aspects of leaving -- I love my hairdresser, my job is very accommodating, and I finally found a cheap and good dog groomer after trying nearly everyone in the area -- and to focus solely on the positives. I actually started to get excited about moving, even though I knew I was going to have to bust my behind to get ready to go so quickly.

And then the husband called home and said it all fell through and we were staying.

We military families have to do this to ourselves often. We have to always have one foot ready to go and the other ready to stay. We can't allow ourselves to get too attached to one area because we know we'll have to move, but we have to make the most of it while we live there and learn to find all the good. We have to get excited about moving but not so excited that we will be disappointed if we end up staying...or moving somewhere entirely different.

We have to be willing to be happy where we are, but able to be happy anywhere else too.

So I erased all the positives about this new duty station from my mind and reminded myself that I hate cold weather anyway and now I don't have to find a new groomer. I also learned a valuable lesson: When my husband returns from deployment next April and we PCS next summer as scheduled, three months will not be enough time to get ready. I realized that I need to be well on my way to getting the house ready to sell while my husband is still deployed. So at least I learned that from the experience.

A lot can change in 36 hours in this crazy military lifestyle.

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