Anyone involved in military life is VERY familiar with the term PCS. Our lives bank on it. We set our calendars around it. Our children dread it, or learn to embrace it. What does PCS mean? It means Permanent Change of Station, in other words…moving time.
My entire life, with exception of the 7 years in-between my dad retiring from the Navy and marrying a Sailor, I have PCS'd. A lot! I actually can't imagine a life not PCS'ing. It's how I'm wired. In the Navy, we typically PCS ever three years. So after two years, I start to get the itch. I start stalking potential duty stations. I purge the house and prepare for a move. I start disconnecting a bit in my circles to emotionally prepare for the separations of friendships that I have built.
So I've created a list of what runs through a military wive's mind during PCS season!
1. When is that freaking list coming out?!
I call Boo probably at least once a day to see if he's heard anything about the list of potential duty stations. Even though I know what day the list will be released. What if he just happened to get it early? Or what if he had some inside knowledge of potential duty stations?
2. When can we leave?
I love every place that we have lived! Seriously! I am in no rush to leave, I just want to know when we are leaving! I know he has a timeframe, but what about exceptions? The kids need to start school, so can we leave a month early? What about our family time? I want to visit our Texas family before we head to our new home, we haven't been back in three years! Will we be able to do that?
3. Where are we freaking going?
I know we have to wait for the list to come out, select our top three choices and then wait for someone else to decide where we are living, but WHERE ARE WE GOING? Every little job that pops up, even though it probably won't work, I research it to death! Boo comes home and says, "hey, I heard they may release a billet (job) in Pensacola." What do I do? I join every Pensacola Face Book page I can! I start making Pensacola friends! I look up houses, neighborhoods and schools. I research demographics and crime stats. I look up airports and research rates to and from our home town. Then…I find out Pensacola isn't an options after all. So I start doing the same thing with my our dream list of duty stations. It drives Boo insane, but a girl has to be prepared right?!
4. What needs to go?
I start purging through our crap. There's nothing like arriving to your new home and having to unpack all the crap that you never used during the last three years! I remember growing up and watching the same boxes be moved everywhere we went. Some, never even opened. After my dad retired, I went in and opened a few boxes only to find some of their wedding presents from 18 years earlier! It's gotta go!
5. What do I need to stock up on?
Depending on where we live, I like to bring some kind of memento of our time at said location. Currently, we are stationed in Germany. I'd like to have a few pieces of European furniture, some Polish pottery and other German like decor to remind us of our time here.
6. Where the heck are we going again?
I seriously can't emphasize the magnitude of this question! We, as military spouses, just want to know. In most cases, I'll adapt where ever we end up going. But I just want to know!
So, we have lived in Germany about 2 1/2 years. That means it's time for us to know! I love this life, and can't imagine not living it like we do. But bring out that list baby!