Thursday, January 14, 2010

Home is... where the Navy takes us!

This evening Tony brought up the fact that he'll be starting to look at orders here soon. For a while now him and I have been discussing where we would like to try to go from here. We'll be going back to sea duty so this is a little nerve wracking for me. Knowing that he'll have to be deploying, we've been looking at possible options and come up with what we feel would be ideal. He has decided he prefers to stay on fast attack subs and I support that. He would also like to stay on the east coast and I support that as well. That only leaves us Connecticut and Virginia on this coast. Between those 2 places we'd like to think he'd be able to find at least 1 boat with a billet for him considering how large of a Naval base Norfolk has. Connecticut would be close to my family in Massachusetts so I have them within a reasonable distance while Tony is deployed and I'm alone with all of the kids. So that is likely our first choice if there are any billets available for when he is scheduled to transfer. We have been stationed in Virginia before and I am comfortable and know my way around the Chesapeake area well. I also really miss Chesapeake, so that being our second choice is still okay with me.

Now there is always the west coast or Hawaii. As much as I'd really love to go to Hawaii, both of those options aren't particularly appealing to me with us having 5 young children to move with. Being without our household goods for several weeks going to the other coast or several months going to Hawaii is just a huge headache I don't really want to have to go through with the children being as young as they are. Then there is also the fact that the Navy's budget is hurting and they wont move a family of 7 that far if they don't absolutely have to. There we have it, back to looking at CT or VA.

Just thinking about him going back to sea duty gives me a bit of nausea to say the least. Being left alone for 6+ months with the kids and little communication with him, is only a small part of that. I know I can handle that. Knowing how much of a really hard time the kids are all going to have with him deploying is what breaks my heart just thinking about it. We have a little more than a year before we leave here, but it will be that time far too quickly.

I have had a love/hate relationship with the Navy since the beginning. I cannot deny the good things it has done for our family. The healthcare, while it may have much to be desired, is still wonderful to have and better than many alternatives. The steady income that supports us is a blessing, especially in the current economy. We are in a much better place than so many others and that I am grateful for. We have had our rough spots, where we really questioned if him being in the Navy was the right choice for us, but we've come through them and been better off for it in the end. His career has made it possible for me to stay home with our children to raise them and to homeschool them. Money can be tight, but we make it.

I just keep reminding myself there is a light at the end of this tunnel. When we come out of the other side we'll be in a better place for our family as a whole. Tony is more than halfway done with his Navy career. In less than 9 years we can finally settle down and have that retirement check every month to help make us more comfortable. He'll also have the backround to get a very good paying job in a field he enjoys. He has done far too well in his career for him to throw it away now. There ARE better things in store for us! The separations, time apart and missed holidays, I truly hope are all worth what we will come out of this with. I hope the experiences outweigh our losses.

1 comment:

allbluezoo said...

I share your love/hate relationship, though mine is with the Army :p Honestly, I don't know what we're going to do at this point. Dennis will have nine years in come March and at the end of his contract, thirteen. We have been talking a lot about him getting out, he's been gone so much (he hasn't been home for a summer in five years, he's on his third deployment, he'll be three months short of three years.) -- is it worth it? I've looked up the retirement pay for E5 and I'm more conflicted than I was before because it's more than I thought it was. I doubt he'll get higher than an E5 because his MOS just sucks. Anyway, I hear you.