Dudes, I’ve been enlightened. I have seen the other side. I have drank the cool kids juice.
We have officially done our first PCS pack-out.
See, even though I am a seasoned milspouse (ha), I have never done a “real” PCS. When I first moved out here, J and I weren’t married (gasp!) so we packed everything ourselves in a U-Haul towing our hand-me-down Ford Explorer behind us. Then he deployed and I went home, so we packed everything ourselves and had a few of his Marine friends come help us put it in storage. And then I hired people to take it out. So needless to say, before this day I thought to myself, “What’s the big deal? People come, they pack you, they move sh!t, end of story.” No, no, no. Not the end of story. Just beginning of story.
First of all, there is the prep. OH MY GOD. I am an organization freak so I like things in certain places in certain boxes in certain piles. And then the moving people come and they basically throw your stuff you worked days and nights to organize into one giant pile. Cool.
Then there is the other kind of prep. Housing prep. We live on base so every wall we painted (read: my mom and I painted) had to be painted back. Ugh. Side note though: I didn’t have to paint this time. My mom and J did it. Which basically means I am the most awesome getter outter of stuff to ever live. Someone had to watch the baby, right?
Of course, once you have it all painted and things perfectly organized so that any sane person walking into your house would understand that that thing goes with these things and they all go in this box, the movers come and basically don’t give a rat’s azz. They will pack it at lightning speed and after the first hour you just don’t care anymore because there is no stopping them.
After the movers leave, you have to clean. You haven’t moved your bed or couches in years so there are dust bunnies the size of actual bunnies, Goldfish crackers, and that long-lost DVD now crushed in a million pieces scattered all over your floor. Gross.
If you have kids, get rid of them. No, I’m just kidding. Just find a special place for them to hang out. THANK GOD ON HIGH my mom was here. She watched E allllll during the prep days, all during the pack/move day, and every other time in between. I seriously don’t know what in God’s name I would have done if I would have had to watch packers and watch her. It would not have been pretty.
I have learned so much stuff while gearing up and going through this first PCS. I will talk about some of that stuff and some helpful hints at some point. Later. In a few weeks, since we are moving and all.
However, the worst part of this particular PCS is leaving my neighbors. My friends. They were my first “military” friends. I have never lived on a military base and they showed me so much love, support, and compassion over the past two years. I am going to miss them more than they will ever know. No neighborhood will EVER compare to these people. Ever.
To my neighbor to my left: You and your family are amazing. There is no other word to describe it. You helped our family in more ways that I would have expected any neighbor to ever do. You are motivating and you always brightened my day in talking with you- from you no bullshit attitude to your unending willingness to watch E, lend me your stuff, or take my dog for extreme extended periods of time. I will never forget you coming over with your entire family and singing me “Happy Birthday” and presenting me with a cupcake and massage gift card while J was deployed. I’m tearing up thinking about all you have done for us. I don’t think I will ever have enough words to describe what you mean to us. Any person will be lucky to live next to you.
To my neighbor to the right: Not only will our family miss you guys and your generosity in letting us use your mower and other various appliances, I know both E and Pendleton will miss your dog. We had amazing neighbors on both sides of us. I wish we had more time to spend together. We hope to see you on our side soon enough.
To my neighbor with the cat and the huge car that she looks funny driving in because she is the smallest person ever: We will miss her little paw prints on our windshield! But seriously, you are THE strongest woman I know. From your multiple deployments, to taking care of G, and dealing with your own personal things, I am inspired by you. I am so happy for you that things are working out and I will continue to pray that things go well. You are so sweet, so kind, and such a great friend. I hope the Corps brings us back together.
To my neighbor with the girls/all the cool toys E wants to steal: What can I say (as I type this from YOUR computer)- you and your family are beyond generous for letting us stay in your home while ours gets packed away. Your beautiful daughters will be missed by E (she keeps asking for them) and I will miss seeing your bright shining face in the col-de-sac. You were there for me when I was worried about E’s health and J was gone. You have been a listening ear. I will miss you terribly but I CANNOT WAIT to come visit you!!!
I have made some of the most amazing friends while I have lived here. I hate that we have to move away, but I am excited for everyone’s new adventures. The Marine Corps is small and I hope it brings us back together at some point. We love you all and we will miss you so dearly.
PS- We left this picture in a frame for all of you to remember us by. We aren’t vain or anything, we just figured you’d miss us.
Just kidding (but feel free to print it out and frame it in a, say, 20×24 frame? Cool.)