By Andrea Scherpich
SpouseLink Ambassador
& Guest Blogger

And then we waited some more…

When you are a military family, you live with the constant feeling of “what next?” It often feels like the moment you settle into a new Duty Station you are waiting to find out where you are heading. Depending on your servicemember’s job, rank, and experience and of course “The Needs of The Military”. It all starts about a year before you even are set to move, or at least that’s how it is for us. Each phase is both exciting and nerve racking. Will we finally get those amazing orders we have been waiting for or will we get the dreaded duty station that everyone tries to avoid? Will we move across the country or just across base? These are all the things that we talk and talk to death as we anticipate what our future holds. 

Sometimes your family is scheduled to move or at least your servicemember is scheduled to get orders. Sometimes that will mean a move for the whole family (PCS) but sometimes that will mean a new job at the same location (PCA). Either way it can mean big changes for the family. Will your servicemember go from a relatively 9-5 schedule to a nights-and-weekends type job, or the other way around? These are all things that we talk about non-stop for months before we ever get those orders! At least that’s what I do. Any mention of a potential duty station has me deep diving into schools, housing, doctors and the local area in general. My husband is always cool, calm and collected. He holds a firm line on “wait and see.”  He’s definitely right, it adds such a higher level of stress because until those orders are in the system there is no guarantee. 

Although it isn’t super common, there are times when your servicemember isn’t due to move, but it happens anyway. Like I said before, it always comes back to the needs of the military. A couple months before orders are due we were given a list of spots that would be open and asked to choose our top 3. After much research and discussion, we turned in our list and then the wait really began. The next step is to wait for several promotion boards to be released. The dates are not set, so you can wait anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 months. As each promotion board is released, the anticipation rises. I think I asked my husband 10x a day for the last week! 

When the orders finally arrive, the feelings are so mixed… at least for me. Excited, scared, sad all rolled into one. People love to say that military spouses are super adaptable, and it’s true. But we are also human and that makes it very hard. We leave behind friends, family, and a community that we may have come to love. On the other hand, we get to see places we may have never been, and meet people from totally different walks of life. One of the best things about this crazy life is the opportunity to live in different places, so in the end it’s all worth the wait!

Meet SpouseLink
Ambassador Andrea

She served as our representative at Twentynine Palms, CA for 5 years and is currently at Camp Pendleton, CA. Connect with her for insights about the areas she’s lived in.


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