a frequent conversation these days

Over the past week or so I have randomly run into a few acquaintances here and there and in one form or another they have had the same reaction to the news that "we know we are moving sometime this year, probably - but we don't know when or where."

"Oh man - I just couldn't take that - ya know? That would just drive me crazy... that MUST drive YOU crazy"

And I have the same response to them.... "No, it doesn't really drive me crazy at all."

What really drives me crazy is people thinking that it drives me crazy. Or that if it doesn't drive me crazy it is because I posses some special anti crazing driving gene or medication or something.

Moving with the military is relatively easy. They tell you when and where and then you go. There is no worrying that we may or may not have a job a few months after we move to a new place. There is no fear that we won't have enough money to make the move. There are no families feelings that are hurt because we choose to live near one parent and not the other. And we know that where ever we end up won't be forever. The house doesn't have to be perfect, the weather doesn't have to be perfect the schools and churches only have to make do for a few years.

I can't imagine moving like regular people. Most people move with in the context of a problem or loss or tragedy. You graduate college and now you are on your own, someone loses their job, a parent is sick and needs more hands on care or someone has died. Then you have to find a new job and there is the worry about if you will be able to find one, how much will it pay how long will it last. You have to pack and move yourself out of your own pocket and find a place to live.... the house you will live in for the rest of your time in your new location. How long will you be in the new location? What if you get there and it stinks.... you have to make the decision to move again or just deal with it. To me that seems infinitely harder.

I think people in that type of situation think they have more control over where they go than people in the military. But that control is just an illusion. Because just as fast as our orders could get changed - their job could fall through or a family member guilt's you in to changing your mind or money is so tight that you can't take the job farther away.... etc etc etc No one is really in control of that situation ... everything is just hanging by a thin sting of 'if this happens then we will do this...." In the military the military is in control. You can't essentially let go of needing to worry. There will be housing, their will be a paycheck and there will be and end to the assignment. And if our orders change, we still have a job, a place to live and money in our pocket... you can't say that about the private sector.


txranger93 said...

You know what? WELL SAID!! It drives me nuts, too, when people ask me how we can "live like this". As much as I hate leaving friends behind (leaving Abilene was by far the hardest move for me in my entire military-dependent life), it is exciting to get somewhere new, get a new house, eat at different restaurants, etc. I purposely get myself lost the first day or two, to see if I can make it back home...it helps me learn the town quicker, and I get to check out all the stores and stuff on the way. Usually after about a week, I know where things are and am pretty self-sufficient. I enjoy that challenge; it's kind of fun exploring a new city. And who wouldn't like getting a "new" house every couple of years? I love it...especially since it forces us to clean out our old junk before we move. Goodwill LOVES us!

Robyn said...

LOVED this! Coaching is alot like the military in that moving around is pretty typical. I absolutely HATE it when people say, "I could never do that or I could never live like that". I just want to say (and have a time or two :)) "you don't know what you can do until you do it". There are many things in life that we would never choose to do, but life happens and you just do it. These people that stay in the same place for their entire life really miss the adventure of moving (I think). I think it also helps you to become closer to your husband/wife b/c you both are in it together. Sorry for the ramble!!

the girls' moma said...

So so true! And now I am faced with ALL of those things I'd managed to avoid all those years!