[personal profile] sichernde_seele
So much to say.

The last few weeks of life have been crazy. (I know, I know. What's new, right?)

I lost my job. We had a major hurricane. I had some relationship struggles. I had some personal struggles.



I started revisiting a plan that I'd had a few years ago. I went to see the recruiter. I talked to a lot of folks. Cat, who spent several years in the Army. I've explored every single thought process that has run through my brain.

The difference between now and then? I'm not all smiley happy shiny about it all. I know and have weighed the risks. The worst case and the best case. I'm not escaping.

During a talk with my father and a subsequent talk with a very wise woman, I came to the conclusion that over the last year and a half, I have stopped running. This is an open door. I'm choosing to walk through it. With a very clear head. It's just not in the clouds.

Tonight I re-took my ASVAB as my other score was over 2 years old and, therefore, invalid. I had a 79 on the practice test. I set a goal of 80 for myself on the real thing. I got an 87. This is a Very Good Score, from what I understand.

My biggest obstacle now is the Dependancy Waiver. They have to show that joining the Army isn't going to cause financial hardship. I don't think this will be too hard as I'm currently unemployed. No money vs. a steady paycheck. I think maybe it can be shown that enlisting is adventageous to my situation. I'm still nervous about it.

I *should* be going to MEPS on Friday. However, with Hurricane Rita now bearing down on our alternate MEPS (Houston), that may get put off.

There are people who are very unhappy with this decision. Much as it pains me to hear the absolute disdain and disgust, this time, I can't and won't let it stop me. Yes, I'm taking a risk. With my life. I just can't find it in myself to live the remainder of my life with regret because I dropped it for someone else. I love him. I always will. I can only hope that he'll one day forgive me. But that is his cross to bear. I have to do what I feel is right.

This also means I will be walking away from new relationships. At least geographically. I'm not giving up.

My name is Holly. I have dreams. I have hopes for my family. I have a best friend out there that won't speak to me probably for a long time to come over this. That's one of my consequences. But I'd rather beg forgiveness than live with regret. That's the bottom line.

I'm well aware this isn't my only option. That's largely the reason that I'm still going through with it. At some point, I decided that I would not accept that I was ever out of options. I'm choosing this because I want it. I want to do this. Yes, I'm terrified. Terrified of failure. Terrified of death. Terrified of letting myself down. But I'm more terrified of not trying.

If you are not in support of me, that's okay. I don't need validation from anyone but myself. I am still a woman. Still a mother. Still a lover. Still a girl. Still standing.

If you are willing to cheer me on, go right ahead. I'm sure I'll appreciate it. But at the end of the day...I have to live with myself.

Date: 2005-09-21 12:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] chumas.livejournal.com
They tell you what you'll be doing?
And did they give you your MOS in writing?

Sometimes it takes a break with what we do in life currently to make our lives better. You lose before you gain.

87 is a pretty good score. Most of the new recruits I helped train were in the range of 70-79. Won't say what I got, it'll make people mad at me. hehe
Sorry if your guy friend would be mad at you for trying something new with your life, for bettering yourself and reaching for meaning in your life. I hope he's smart enough to realize that the woman you are will be there, but he has to be patient enough to wait for you. If not, then it would be his loss.

Do your best, Holly. I'll be rooting for ya.

Date: 2005-09-21 12:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sichernde-seele.livejournal.com
I haven't gone to MEPS yet. That's when I'll get my MOS. I am aiming for medical but I'm interested in a few other specialties. So we'll see what they have to offer me.

Date: 2005-09-21 12:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] aka-baphomet.livejournal.com
I usually don't have much to say. But I can't keep quiet on this. I will say it once and leave it at that..

"There are people who are very unhappy with this decision. Much as it pains me to hear the absolute disdain and disgust, this time, I can't and won't let it stop me. Yes, I'm taking a risk. With my life."

You are not only taking a risk with your life, you are taking a risk with the life of your children's mother. Is that a risk you are willing to take?

Date: 2005-09-21 12:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sichernde-seele.livejournal.com
That's what I meant when I said I was risking my life. Yes, I'm fully aware.

I also feel that I could be in a fatal car accident or get run down by a bus.

I suppose if I have to die, I'd rather it be doing something that my children can consider honorable.

Picture this, with the current job situation here being what it is and not much prospect for something better...If I went back to dancing and got shot by someone else's jealous husband. Do I want my kids to have to tell THAT story or do I want them to know that I was trying to better the world for them?

We are all going to die. It's part of life. I'd like to die at the ripe old age of 150. In the meantime, I want a better life for myself. I want a career. I want to live while I'm here. So I'm going to do that.

J, I love ya, man. Like I said, if you can't support me...that's fine. But I'm not backing down. This is what feels right to me. I've discussed the risk with Morgan and Max. No holds barred. They had questions. In the end, without me having to twist any arms, they are proud to say their mom can do this. I have thier support. That's all I need.

Date: 2005-09-21 01:34 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] not-hothead-yet.livejournal.com
I am not familiar with the logistics of the situation so I'll ask before I make any decisions about whether or not I agree with this decision.

Aren't you going to have to be gone for a length of time to do this? Are you expecting to be shipped off immediately and for how long? Are you hoping to be general combat or are you going for something noncombatant? How long are you signing up for?

What I am concerned about is you leaving your kids behind. It is still very soon since the breakup and what with all the moving and such... I just am concerned that your desire to do this is not taking into consideration your children's emotional health. Is it so vital that you do this NOW? Is it possible to put it off for another year or even six months? What's going on with the kids' school? will they have to move again? change schools, therapists, and friends again?

I am concerned... that is all.

Date: 2005-09-21 03:27 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sichernde-seele.livejournal.com
And I'm happy to answer those questions.

I will be gone for 9 weeks to Basic and then about 12 more for AIT. After that, the children can be with me. During that time (and likely the remainder of this school year) the children will stay where they are. With my folks.

At some point, yes, they will have to move again.

I scored high enough on my ASVAB that I can pretty much pick and choose my MOS. All of the ones I'm interested in are non-combat based MOSs.

The vitality of this being done now is that I am unemployed. Have you seen SE Louisiana lately? Finding a job is not an easy task. I do not wish to waste any further time.

As for therapist, having lost my job, I also lost medical coverage. If I were to be hired by a decent employer tomorrow, I would have 90 days before coverage would start. With the military, however, coverage would begin immediately.

If I go now, I will be home for Christmas (because everyone in Basic/AIT comes home for Christmas).

How long am I signing up for? Well, my initial term will be 3 years. At the end of that, I will decide if I want to go career military or get out and use my education and/or GI Bill to further said education and work as a civilian. At this point, I can't really say what I will feel like when that time comes.

I truly believe this *IS* in the best interest of my children. I understand the moving is craptacular but I also believe that the stability afforded by knowing where your next meal is coming from as well as the structure of it all is, in the long run, more beneficial to my children than hearing "No, we can't go grocery shopping because mom is broke."

As I said, I know there are other options, but this one is best suited to me.

In the end, I (and I includes my kids) have to live with this decision and their opinions and my knowledge of what I am doing are what really matter.

Also, and this is low on the list, but still has weight. My father is in early stages of alzhiemer's (as is his mother) and before he doesn't know who the hell I am, I want him to be proud of me and confident that I can take care of my family without him as a constant safety net.

Hope I answered everything. If I didn't, I'll be glad to clarify anything else.

Love,
Holly

been thinking a while...

Date: 2005-10-24 05:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] not-hothead-yet.livejournal.com
I truly believe this *IS* in the best interest of my children. I understand the moving is craptacular but I also believe that the stability afforded by knowing where your next meal is coming from as well as the structure of it all is, in the long run, more beneficial to my children than hearing "No, we can't go grocery shopping because mom is broke."

As I said, I know there are other options, but this one is best suited to me.


From what i understand, the "structure" you mention is shunting kids off to mom and dad. Which hardly constitutes "structure" considering how much moving and upheaval they've gone through already. As has been pointed out, the military pays craptacularly bad. Especially if you have dependants. There ARE other options, just you prefer this one. That still doesn't mean it's best for your kids.

Frankly, my biggest question becomes, why have all of the ideas and "solutions" you've had that I've known of all involved leaving your kids somewhere while you go off to another place?

Take it from someone who knows personally, being shunted around place to place waiting for mom and dad to make some kind of stable "real" home is never worth any MONEY to a child. I would have rather stayed on food stamps than go through all the foster care I had to. I wish my parents had just frucking let me be adopted when it is all said and done. You know why? Not because I don't love my parents, of course I do - kids forgive - but because my parents never did get the "hang" of taking full-time care of me. By the time we were all together, they just weren't bonded to me and just really coulnd't pay attention to me like they should have. I left home at 15? Hell, I never had a home to begin with. Don't do that to your kids more.... you NEVER get those years back and you can't ever "make it up" to kids. ONce you miss enough of their growing up, you become a moot point in their lives. They will still love you but you will not have the closeness that living together and struggling together gives you.
How many times are the kids going to have to hear "I'm doing this thing and you kids will adjust because that's what I want"? As things progress, their own needs and desires will be sublimated and simplified. Is that what you want?

I disagree with your decision partly based on my understanding of how the situation has been going and from here it lookes like a deterioration for the children. It looks like their lives are turning into one long trek from place to place, physical or metaphorical, waiting to SETTLE DOWN.
From here, it just looks like you're running away from your own family AGAIN. Agree or don't, like it or not, but understand that's how it looks from here.

In a nutshell.

Date: 2005-10-24 05:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] not-hothead-yet.livejournal.com
I feel you are asking your kids to grow up without you so you can go do what you want.

Don't expect them to be all dependant or even child-like when you get back. If kids are left behind, they take care of themselves as best they can, but they won't let you take up the mantel you threw off before when you decide to come around again. Ask anyone who had just one "here today gone tomorrow" parent. That kind of experience teaches a child things they will never unlearn.

Re: In a nutshell.

Date: 2005-10-25 02:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sichernde-seele.livejournal.com
The only other time I was away from them was once. 2 months. And it wasn't intended to be more than 2 weeks. It so happened that I had a bit of a breakdown.

As for the "craptacular pay"...it's more than I'm making now and more than I made at even my best paying job (Eatel). Not to mention the lack of 300 dollars per month coming out of my check.

I will be away from them for Basic and AIT.

As far as shunting them off...the fact that they will be with Nate and their brother I don't think is shunting them off.

I've talked with them about this. They are supportive.

As far as doing what I want...

Let me be clear. I'm scared half out of my skull. But I also know that I would spend even MORE time away from them if I were to be working 8 hours and schooling 8 hours and studying 4 hours a night. That's 20 hours. You do the math.

Shall we get into the fact that I can't even possibly afford to do that? Forget the lack of sleep factor. Let's just roll with the income vs. outgoing. Not doable at all.

Decide to come around again, huh? I don't think so.

I think you know very little about me. I think that when things got rough and we moved or changed jobs, one of us was there at all times. In several of those cases it was me. Not because Nathan wanted to "do what he wanted" but because it was the logical choice.

At this point in time, neither of us is exactly winning the bread. He's finally getting stabilized and on his feet. With the housing allowance going to him, he is willing and able to provide a home for our family.

I fail to see how this is "running away". But that's just me. In my own shoes. Yes, it's something I've wanted. It's not a matter of "fuck, I am out of options"...but it most certainly is a matter of time to stop waiting around for life to happen.

Re: In a nutshell.

Date: 2005-10-25 04:26 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
you keep saying this is something you've always wanted, but that it also seems to be the best beneficial choice for you and your children. I happen to think there are other options that would be probably just as enjoyable (probably more so) to you and better for your children. I happen to think out of all your options, you are picking the worst one.

Have you thought about police academy?

Re: In a nutshell.

Date: 2005-10-25 11:02 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sichernde-seele.livejournal.com
Of course I have considered it. It's the same as any paramedic program. Schooling you have to pay for and it's not 3 days a week or 2 days a week. You can't just take 6 hours of it. It's full time and you don't get paid.

uh, actually

Date: 2005-10-25 05:47 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
you do get paid for police academy. It is a state-run affair specifically to train qualified civilians to become basic law enforcement within the state that runs the academy.

Re: uh, actually

Date: 2005-10-25 05:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] not-hothead-yet.livejournal.com
paramedic training is private because EMTs/paras work for businesses like hospitals and private ambulatory companies. Police academy is not private although there are companies and universities that have law enforcement programs you can pay to get certified for.

Date: 2005-09-21 03:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] a-little-rain.livejournal.com
Not that it's my business, but it sounds to me like you have really given your decision a lot of thought and careful consideration. I wish you the very, very best of luck.

Date: 2005-09-22 12:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sichernde-seele.livejournal.com
Thank you. I've been thinking about this for 25 years. I've thought about getting blown to high heaven as well as being a command sgt. major of the Army like my grandfather. The best and worst.

I've feared not having the stamina as well as been convinced I can do anything if I really put my mind to it.

One way or the other, I'll be okay. We'll all be okay.

Date: 2005-09-21 06:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] smaptacular.livejournal.com
I just can't agree more with everything that C and J have said.

Please make sure that you aren't jumping into anything. You know you love to make decisions and then find that things aren't greener on the other side.. and that you really want something else

This isn't just a job.. This is a lifestyle. You will become the military. You will be the military. Your children will be military.

I never realized this more then when I was at a military wedding a couple weeks ago.. and the local ROTC did the saber walk that they traditionally do. The couple is married and then walks thru raised sabers... until the last set of men drops the sabers to stops their procession. One begins to yell... "Mrs. Smith.. The US Army welcomes you" ... then they raise the sabers and the couple walks underneith as the solider spanks the saber on the wifes ass. She immediately becomes a member of our military. No "ifs" "ands" or "butts" about it. She may love him.. but she will be forced to love the military too.. Or give him up for a non-military life

This is no joke. The military is for real. They offer many things.. they do give back to the community and do help many many people.. But you will also give your life in all ways to them. You will give your children's lives to them.

I wont stop you... you are an adult.. But I hope you think on this. This isn't I am going to move to Florida. This isn't I am going to work for EQ and live in California. This isn't like getting a new tatoo. This is I am going to devote myself to one thing.. and even if I hate it... I have to do it.

And.. If you think that you will be there for 3 years.. or what ever.. Remember that they are extending tours and duty for every person in the military. They dont ask you.. They dont see if that is ok.. They just do it. Three years could be as long as they damn well please. Just dont go into this kidding yourself. We are at war.. we will be at war for many more years. You will see war in your time there.. Can you really say that want to do that?

Just throwing things out.. You do what you want. I am always here tho.. Let me know if you need something.

Date: 2005-09-22 12:25 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sichernde-seele.livejournal.com
That wedding? That was my dream.

I know it's a lifestyle. I have grown up around it. It still *is* the lifestyle of my grandparents and aunts and uncles. To some degree, even my father. And I love and respect and admire every one of them. Whether they were military by choice or by marriage.

Read through my other responses.

Does it look like there's much I haven't thought about?

3 years ago I was really giving this serious thought. I was told no. I complied. I complied because I chose to do so. But now the time for compliance is over. I'm no one's slave.

As for the three years. Tours of duty as far as war go...Yes, they can say they are deploying you for a year and keep you there 2 years. But if you sign a 3 year contract, unless they institute a draft...when that contract is up, you have to re-enlist or not.

Date: 2005-09-21 06:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dear-amaranth.livejournal.com
I know that I don't know you as well as some of the other people commenting. But from what I've just read, you've been wanting to do this for a very long time... I know you're a smart woman and you wouldn't make a decision like this without thinking it through. I doubt anyone commenting has yet asked you a question you haven't asked yourself and been able to answer.

Bottom line, this is your life and your lessons to learn. If you think this is the best thing to do, then do it. I'll be worried for you, but I've made enough unpopular decisions of my own to be able to offer full support to someone elses. So if you go for this, I'm all for it. It's your life; you don't need anyones approval.

Date: 2005-09-21 07:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sichernde-seele.livejournal.com
Thank you, dear.

And you're right. This isn't something that I just totally have no clue about. My whole family was in it. I've lived around it most of my life. And yes, it's something I've explored for years.

Out of high school I couldn't do it because I had a GED. Back then, if you didn't have 15 college credit hours to back it up, you just couldn't go. Period. By the time I had those, I had Nate and the kids, too.

This isn't some fleeting thing. It's been there for years and years. I put it off for other people. Now it's time to make my choices for me.

*hugs*

Date: 2005-09-22 02:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] magdollna.livejournal.com
All I can say is good luck and I think you are doing what you are doning for a shot at giving your kids a better life. They will not stop eating and growing and needing things. If you get a nursing degree or somhting like that out of the army you will allways have work when you come out. I hope you will be able to update your LJ and let us know how your doing.

mags

Date: 2005-09-22 05:03 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jaxia.livejournal.com
When I signed up to join the Air Force, it was through the Dallas MEPS. If you need to come up here, let me know and you have a place to stay.

It's funny that you mention this now. One of SK's childhood friends stayed with us last night. He is on break from the Navy. I talked to him quite a bit about why he joined, and I've been thinking a lot about why I didn't join. I decided it wasn't for me, but I still wonder...

You are right - you can die walking down the street or driving a car. But I think serving in the military has honor.

I wish you peace in you heart. My number hasn't changed.

Date: 2005-09-22 06:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ex-nitemareg735.livejournal.com
Take it from someone who was int he armed forces.

It is not a good thing.

It only is if you can deal not being your own person, not thinking for yourself, and giving up any type of real freedom you may still have.

Plus you will be required to maybe kill people.

I say dont do it. But, if you do, good luck.
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