Bang Head Here


As order negotiations go full speed ahead, I can’t help but try to see the good. *Try* being the highlighted word. The orders we thought we had are gone, orders that were available are not now, and the games have begun. We are not new to ‘the game’. The husband and I understand the detailers need to fill his ‘hot orders’ first. We also get that we are lucky to even get a say in anything. And last, we know not *all* orders available are told to us. So, we hunt. The husband is spending many hours on the phone and then comes home to talk it over, which means he paces, vents, explains each situation and I sit watching him go back and forth, back and forth while nodding and trying not to fall out of my chair when he tells me we could move to the other side of the world. Instead, I save those dramatic moments for when we, A. actually have the orders and B. he leaves for work and I’m alone. Then I can give myself whatever ‘moment’ I feel I need without him sending me to an institution. It’s life. It’s Military life. We all go through it, which makes it nice to share since we all have a ‘story’.

If we get orders to move half way around the world, we will go.

If we get orders to a boat we didn’t want, tough cookies.

If we get the boat/location we want, I will send the detailer cookies….every month….for a year. 

It’s that simple.

I have a few non-military friends/family having more of a reaction to this than I do. That’s hard. I can’t imagine how confusing it is to see this all from the outside and trying to process it. It’s a lot for us “in it” and we know what is going on! And explaining it is…well, interesting. I do my best, but it’s a world that operates completely different from theirs.

In a whole, I’m grateful for the choices, the opportunities and the friendships made along the way. But, as most of you know, I don’t sugar coat this stuff. This part sucks. There isn’t a sweet line that I can sell you that makes this seem “exciting and adventurous” like the “GO NAVY” recruitment commercials. Every time those commercials come across the screen, I turn and look at my husband and say, “Hey! That sounds amazing! You should do THAT! Needless to say my humor falls flat…a lot. I wish you could all see the look he gives me. It’s worth repeating the moment.

Does my husband love his job? Sometimes.

Do I love the Navy? Sometimes.

Does the husband serve because he believes in what he does? YES.

Do I believe in what he does? YES.

So, we take the sucky times and hope the good will soon follow. We can’t always be on a shore duty high.

Right now, I’d like orders…real ones, hard copy, please. Then we can plan our last big vacation and live it up for a few more months. Until then, I’m printing the above sign and placing it through the house.

15 thoughts on “Bang Head Here

  1. Hi Marie! I’m an army wife whose husband is on his first ever deployment and I was wondering what you say to people who tell you “well you knew what you signed up for when you married him” or comments like those? To be honest those comments really get to me because I feel like people are implying I just suck it up and deal with it even though its hard and stressful to be the spouse of a military member. Just curious how you feel about those types of comments

  2. I stumbled on your blog when my soldier was going through basic. We are five months into the Army life now, and I read your blog all the time. I have it saved as one of my favorites. I just want you to know that your words bring me great comfort! I trust I will lean on them when our first deployment comes around, and have leaned in the past when I was realizing our relationship was put on the back-burner. Sometimes, I feel like if the military wanted them to have a family, they would have issued them one with their ACUs!

    I will say the inner-strength comes out of the wood beams and you press on. And I am pleased to see so many women carrying themselves with such strength and dignity. It’s an invigorating thing to witness. So press on, and budget for mani-pedis and a bottle of good red wine. xx

  3. Awww….we are in the same boat right now! Hang in there! We were given our dream orders last week, only to have them revoked this week….with our hopes still up for getting them back. And so the negotiating begins for us also. LOL I say “us” as if I am the one doing the negotiating, right? hehehe I like to think I have a part in something here. Best wishes to you all!

  4. We had the same thing happen, but AF we were set to go were they needed us, orders came up, we went no where. Well that was never planned for. So he had to scramble and get sent to a good sqd, here. It worked out better than what we had planned for, but it still sent us into a tailspin for a bit.

  5. It’s a little different in the Army but we just went through this. And all of a sudden something that we didn’t know was on the table was a real possibility and it was honestly our worst nightmare. We stressed and tried not to stress and in the end, we got what we wanted. I mean he’ll still get deployed at some point (it’s the Army and year long deployments are a given) but it’s where we wanted to be and him doing a job he wants to do. Praying the same for you.

  6. Marie, I hope you guys get the orders you want. If not, life is an adventure! My Uncle just retired from the Navy this summer; he’s finally going civilian and I think he’s been career Navy for 30, pushing 40 years easy. While he was in, though, he, my Aunt and my cousins were stationed in Naples for a few years and then I believe they spent a few in Scotland as well. My cousins got to go to a fancy-schmancy Italian boarding school American mili-kids during high-school, they learned some Italian, some culture, saw and did some amazing things they never would have otherwise.

    I can only imagine that your head is spinning right now, but I know you’ll be able to make an amazing adventure out of wherever the new orders take you and your family. Thinking of you!


  7. LOL!!!!! Careful what you wish for, your detailer’s wife could be reading your blog. Glad we have a while till orders are up. Good luck.

  8. OMG Marie! This is too weird! I was reading your post to my husband, who just happens to be a ******* detailer for subs here in Millington. After I explained who you were and stuff he asked if the last name was ******. I just stared at him. Yup, my husband is your husband’s detailer! He’s pretty amused that he inspired a blog post. We just got into an argument because I was pleading your case. I mean, I feel like I know you and your family! I lost the argument though 😦 He wanted me to tell you that he’s not hiding orders from your husband though. If you want my opinion, go to Hawaii. We just finished sea duty there and it was awesome!

  9. We are not far away from going through our first re enlistment process. This was helpful in a frighting kind of way. I appreciate the honesty and enlightenment.

  10. Well If you end up on the otherside of the world, do know there are families like yours over here too. My daughter has just farewelled her husband on his 1st ever deployment… like her mother(me) before her she smiled and waved him goodbye,went home and ate some icecream (comfort food). I am no longerr an active military spouse but the carere of my medically discharged husband but we still remember the turmoil postings brought us. Keep up the great work we love your blog

  11. My husband does the same thing and I do the same thing you do all the while thinking, “Okay, great! So do you have the actual orders?” My answer to the question, “So where do you want to go?” is…” Does it really matter? The Navy will send us where they need him.”

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