Excuse me while I indulge myself in a little self wallowing.
I miss the military. Like REALLY miss the military. And I know a lot of you will think I'm crazy for even feeling remotely sentimental about the military, but let me tell you, once you're on the outside it's a whole new world, literally. Now, there are some things I don't miss about the military. I don't miss the crazy work schedules or the constant possibility of deployment, the constant hurry up and wait, and we did a lot of that towards the end. But the things I miss far outweigh the bad things in the current moment.
The number one thing I miss the most is the common bond you have with everyone around you. There is nothing that brings a group of people together as friends better than the military. Then if you throw some common religion in there, that bond grows even stronger. I miss having military friends. I read all their blogs and about all their get-togethers and feel so left out. Out here in the "real world" people have families to visit and work to do and just don't seem to care so much about (or need) the close friends that you rely on when you're in the military, when those friends are all you have.
You know what else I miss? Moving. I love going new places and seeing new things. The idea that I may live in the same place for 10 plus years has me a little scared. My itchy traveling feet may not be able to handle it. And buying a house? That's a huge commitment, and the military kept me from having to make it.
The military also made me feel special. When you tell people you are in the military (or in a military family) they think that's really cool and oftentimes they will thank you for your service and make you feel really guilty that all you've really done is spend 4 years in training and not doing a while lot of service. And you can't tell me that it doesn't make you feel super special to get to drive on a military base and just flash your ID to the guards and get to drive right past. Before I was in the military I would drive by the bases and wonder what super secret things go on inside those fences, and when you're in the military you get to be on the other side of the fences. Of course then you learn that nothing too special goes on inside, but those on the outside don't have to know that.
Uniforms. Need I say more? My husband looked soooo good in his uniforms. Khakis and polos just won't be the same.
I miss being taken care of. Regular paycheck? Check. Housing allowance? Check. Food allowance? Check. Medical Insurance? Check. Most of it tax free? Check.
So I guess that's enough self-pity for now. Poor, lonely, unspecial me will now go find something to happy about not being in the military. Maybe.