Michael and I knew life in the military would be different, we even knew it would come with challenges: the obvious one being that we'd have many times of separation. Before leaving BYU's comfortable little detachment and entering active duty we even attended a few briefings that we thought would prepare us for our big move and the beginning of life in the military.
The truth is that we could have attended briefings until our ears rung and nothing could have prepared us for what we're experiencing right now. And that's O.K... but it does stink a little. What we should have accepted long ago is that nothing can prevent the inevitable discomfort and occasional disappointment that will come from being a military family and that an attitude of flexibility, gratitude, and spontaneity would keep us alive and easy to live with.
Flexibility because we might be promised a house on a certain date and then that promise might be revoked even though it was what you were deriving all your hope and patience from to get you through the days in your small TLF (Temporary Living Facility). Yes... we are back on the waiting list for housing.
Gratitude because despite the loud bed sheets, uncomfortable couch, lack of space for a sleeping baby and abounding bugs, you have a job and a home- two things that millions of people around the world pray for every day.
Spontaneity because frequent visits from dad, card games in the courtyard and conversations at the playground will be what makes you miss your time in TLF and want to come back. (We'll never forget the family of 5 next door (yes, they only have 1 bedroom too... what am I complaining for?!!) and our newlywed friends from BYU)
Today was a hard day.
I was tired because our little girl who was really good at sleeping through the night stopped doing that after a 3-day road trip and there's no crying-it-out when she's in the room next door.
I was frustrated because we still don't know for sure when Michael leaves for his month-long training in Colorado.
I was mad because I couldn't find a moment to myself in our small house.
I was embarrassed because I left base, forgot my wallet and couldn't get back in without a hassle.
But, today was also a great day!
We had a pot-luck dinner for a couple from Salt Lake (yes, there are MANY Utahan's here) that just moved into their housing with their 6-week old baby.
The sun shined all day.
Michael helped me laugh at a variety of ridiculous mistakes I made in a very small amount of time.
Sarah was happy and played with her friend next door on a blanket in the courtyard.
Grandpa Jet who was here from Utah helping his grand-daughter move-in made us all laugh while we played board games until dark.
The fact is, we will miss this time. If I can remember that, then I'll be way better off. Michael's not really a complainer. I think he recognizes how precious this time is. Because when his training starts, eventually he'll have mandatory 12-hour days and I'll be willing to trade my big house for more time with him.
I am so grateful for this experience. I am so grateful for what it's teaching me.
Here's to a life full of surprises! Thank you, Air Force.