This week has been full of excellent news.
- My husband successfully completed carrier qualification in the C-2A Greyhound and has just a few more events before he’s totally done with the FRS.
- We got word that he’s going to our first choice of fleet squadron!
As for Item the First, CQ was a major hurdle and I’m so proud of my husband for clearing it. Fun fact: his class did CQ on a carrier whose commissioning we witnessed and on whose flight deck I have walked. We are excited that my husband is a heartbeat away from the fleet. After so long in the schoolhouse, we are looking forward to seeing what life in the “real” Navy holds. He is keen to start actually doing the job for which he has trained with years of hard work and determination, and I am proud of him for it.
Sure, hitting the fleet squadron means that we now must be prepared for longer periods of separation and all the challenges thereof, but in some ways we are heading into a more stable part of the career. We know where our home will be for the next three years, which is much more than we could say during any phase of flight training. The sheer abundance of variables that affect the length of a given part of flight school meant that the only guidance we had as to how long we would be stationed in a particular place was, “You’ll be here as long as it takes to complete the syllabus.” Now we’re starting the “normal” rotation between sea and shore tours, and while we know things can always change, it makes a huge difference to have a pretty solid guess as to when we can expect the next set of orders.
Item the Second is one about which I’m almost afraid to be too elated. We had been hoping for a long time that things would work out so we could stay in our current town and in our own house and not have to see all our worldly possessions disappear into the back of a moving van before starting the sea tour, and the word right now is that we got what we wished for. As a matter of fact, the distribution of East Coast, West Coast, and Japan slots for the COD guys in the class happened to fall out fortuitously, so all the guys are heading to their top choices. Perfect, right? We couldn’t have planned it better.
We told our parents (who had been waiting on tenterhooks as much as we) and I’m telling you, but we aren’t shouting the good news from the Facebook rooftops or telling aunts and uncles and grandparents. Why not? Because we have been living in limbo and agonizing over the assignment possibilities for so long that we won’t quite believe that it actually worked out as well as it did until my husband is fully checked into his new squadron. We’re paranoid, quite frankly, and still half-expecting the rug to get yanked out from under us with a last-minute reshuffling. It’s unlikely, sure, but I guess we’re still a little superstitious about our good fortune. Should we ever be blessed with children, I am sure that I will be the kind of woman who waits until the first trimester is completely over before announcing that we’re expecting — I’m the kind of person who wants to be really, really sure before allowing myself to get excited.
We are happy, though. Little by little, I’m letting myself start to think about things like renewing our membership to the botanical garden, choosing a fancy new gas range for the kitchen in this house, participating in local CAP events this summer and beyond, and looking for jobs in this area. I am looking forward to settling comfortably into the idea that this place will remain home for three more years.