I’m very proud of myself for the past three full weeks of M/W/F blogging, including three Maker Monday posts! *pats self on back* Maybe it’s silly, but it feels right to make a minor shift for the foreseeable future. Thankfully it still starts with an M so my type-A self doesn’t feel too badly about it! For the next few months, I’ll be giving you:
If there’s one thing I’m semi-expert on, it’s moving. Nobody offers a degree in it, I but have a lifetime of “on the job” experience. My parents relocated for the first time when I was too young to remember, and for my entire growing-up our family moved every few years. I attended three elementary schools, one middle school (miracle!), and three high schools. My parents moved again in the middle of my time at college.
Two weeks after college graduation I married a guy who decided a few years later to join the Navy, and we’ve been moving ever since. If my math is correct, the longest I’ve lived in one place was 3 years and 9 months, and it happened twice, once as a kid (middle school!) and once as an adult. Both times it was in suburban Chicago, so I guess that explains why my “angry mom voice” comes out in a Chicago accent… cumulatively it was my longest, if not original or most recent, hometown. Go Cubbies!
In (not) too deep.
When I was a kid we settled into every new hometown as if we’d be there forever. In my adult life as a military spouse we never think any town will be our “forever” home; we know every move is a 2.5-3 year tour. They call it a PCS, Permanent Change of Station. (If the military was capable of recognizing irony, this would be a prime example. I don’t think “permanent” means what they think it means.) These days, we settle in only just deep enough, knowing that a pivot is always coming.
More than most years, 2020 is bringing a whole new experience of moving-related pivots. When we “PCS’ed” here in December 2017, we expected to move again in early summer 2020. Delayed deployment pushed that to late summer. Coronavirus pushed it to the autumn.
Then, two weeks ago, the landlord of our current rental home pushed us right BACK to summer, and we’ve spent the past two weeks panicking, paper-pushing, and taking a hard unexpected pivot on top of the pivots we were prepared for.
Every long-time military family has a Pivot Story, when they got new orders after household goods had already been shipped somewhere else, or when medical issues interrupted their overseas orders, or when the falling-dominoes of other peoples’ changed orders caused their own to tumble.
Here we go again.
People often say to me, “I don’t know how you do it,” and the truth is, I’m not sure either. But we do. Over and over. So I hope these Moving Mondays might answer that question, with (maybe) a bit of humor, a ton of honesty, and hope and encouragement for all of us who are moving, literally or spiritually. You’d be surprised how the practice of pivoting works both ways.
So pull up a cardboard box, and grab a roll of packing tape, and here we go.
P.S. Moving Mondays will more or less follow our family’s relocation over the next few months, with reflection from me along the way. Every time we move, it makes me reconsider all the times before. If there’s anything you want to know or hear about, leave me a comment. If you’re a frequent mover or a military family, what do you wish someone would say about the moving life?