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A Boy, A Girl, and The Marine Corps: A Love Triangle: January 2010

A Boy, A Girl, and The Marine Corps: A Love Triangle

"I cast my lot with a Marine and where he was, was home to me." ~ Anonymous.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Military

I know I have been really down on the military lately. Like most wives, I have a tumultuous relationship with the military, and the Marine Corps specifically. We have our ups and downs. Some days, I couldn't be prouder of my husband and his service. Some days, I can't wait until he's out. But the reality is, the military has been good to us.

I think back to the old days. Days before I was born. I think back to times when there was no support for military families. Days when the country didn't stand by their Marines, Soldiers, Sailors, and Airmen. Days when, if you were against the war, you were against the military. I think back to times when wives were notified by telegram that their husbands had died. How hard must have all of that been.

My husband has a wealth of support at his disposal. And, though not all, most civilians stop to shake his hand and thank him for his service to our country. We have non-profits to turn to when things get tough, when we don't get paid, or when we simply can't support ourselves on military pay or in this military life.

I have groups to join and blogs to read. I have wives to talk to from all over the country. The presidents wife has recognized the military family and made it her mission to better support us. We have commissary privileges and a Navy Exchange near by. Movies have been made to honor those that have come before, stories have been written.

All in all, this day in age, it's not so bad to be married to the military. There is so much more out there for us then there ever was before. There is so much more support. It is true that I had people say insensitive things to me during the deployment. It's true that my civilian friends were less than supportive. I had a rough deployment. However, it shaped me. It changed me. I became strong and independent. I became resilient. There is nothing I can't handle now. I was so soft before. I was so unsure. Now, I am confident that I can handle life. Military life can be very hard at times. Sometimes I hate it. Sometimes I say to myself, "If I knew then what I know now..." But the truth is, I still would have married my husband. I married a man, not a uniform. And I took what came with that man, which was his uniform. And, all in all, the military has been good to us.

My husband is re-enlisting in August. We have at least two more years to go. Here's a cheer to two more good years serving our country! HEAR! HEAR!

Friday, January 29, 2010

School, life, everything

We went to an animal rescue yesterday... Well, more of a sanctuary. They do farm animals, though they also take in dogs and cats.

I herded pigs, I got rammed by two goats, once while I was drawing blood on another goat. I wrestled with llamas and won, though he stepped on my foot and it may be broken now. I also drew blood on an angry llama that reared up every time I got the needle in the vein. I was molested by three goats and battles some sheep. All in all, a very productive day.

I had so much fun. I'm tired, and very, very sore, but it was great. How fun would it be if that was my job!?

I just wish all of last week had gone so well. You see, it was finals week. Yes, finals week. The week that I dread every seven weeks of my life. I had a research paper due, and two finals to study for. And some how, I think I managed to pass everything and keep my 4.0.

Let me explain... I give in to peer pressure very easily when it comes to drinking. A friend of mine, and a recent inductee into the USMC Wives Club, is being stationed in North Carolina and had a going away party Friday night. I went and got talked into drinking... A lot. I haven't been that drunk in a long time. I was still drunk in the morning. In fact, I was still drunk until around 9am and I stopped drinking at 12am. Too drunk for my own good. I can't sleep when I drink, so I was tired too. I really needed to work on my final paper and study for the first of my two finals.... I did neither. I slept all day, then all night.

Sunday, I scrambled like hell to put the finishing touches on my paper and make note cards for my final. A friend graciously allowed my to come over on Monday and help me cram. Tuesday, I crammed some more and made note cards for my second final. But I also had to be at school to get my patient examined for my first surgery practicum. It was a very full day. Oh, and did I mentions that after I presented my final paper, I forgot to turn it in? Yeah, that was awesome. Oh, yeah, and I found out that my surgery practicum skills are pass/fail. Either I can place an IV catheter or I can't. I'm so going to fail!

Somehow it all worked out. My teacher accepted my late paper and gave me full credit because she saw it when it was due, I just forgot to hand it in. And my finals? Well, I managed a 91% on my first one. It's a B, but a high B. And considering I didn't have much time to study for it, I'll take it. I even managed a 98% in the class. My other final? Well, that didn't go as well. It was brutal. If I managed a B, I will be surprised. I don't think I will lose my A in the class, but that final nearly killed me. I went home and had nightmares about all the questions I couldn't answer and how, now, I was going to kill patients for not knowing those things. It was horrible.

The military still owes us money. And a lot of money. For a while, they owed us two paychecks, but we did, finally, get one of them (just not the big one). We had to borrow money from my parents because we couldn't pay our house payment, nor any of our other bills. We tried to get assistance from all those groups that give out money to military families, but we were told we didn't qualify because my husband didn't come home injured and we don't have kids. It was so frustrating. My parents weren't too happy about giving us three grand to pay our bills. I just hope we get paid soon. What are we going to do if money doesn't start coming in?

All in all, an extremely stressful week. I passed my classes, thank God. That's all I can really hope for anymore. We are always so broke and everything else never seems to be going right, but I can count on school to be the same. Stressful and crazy, but I always know that if I study and apply myself, I will be fine. Not so much with the rest of life.

My husband and I are doing much better. Not great, but better. We don't fight as much, but I think that's because he has gone back to work and isn't home all the time. For now, it's mostly peaceful here. That is about as much as I am able to hope for. Peace.

Thank God it's tax season. I'm hoping we get a big return this year. I need a bunch of stuff for school, and none of it is cheap... Plus, I've got to start saving up to take my state and national licensing exams. Not cheap either.

HOHUM! Some day, life will go a bit more smoothly. It's all temporary, right? School, being broke, readjustment after a deployment... It all gets better somewhere down the road. It just has to.

Friday, January 15, 2010

It's pay day!

Well, it's payday and no one in the company got paid. Yep, zero people received their pay today.

So, that means the military now owes us 4 grand. We still haven't gotten the other paycheck they owe us. The paper work for it was filled out the week of Thanksgiving. So, we should have gotten it mid December. It's basically a month late and we were told today that it wouldn't be here until the end of January at the earliest. I guess we are not the only people in the unit waiting on the first paycheck either.

So, we had to borrow money from my parents to pay all of our bills because we didn't get paid. We now have end of the month bills coming in and we need to go grocery shopping. Oh, and the dog is almost out of food. I called my mom today and warned her that we may need to borrow more money. And it will probably have to be a lot of money. We have a lot of bills due.

To make our lives even better, I had to shell out $130 to fix my car today. It's lucky I did. Apparently, my steering was about to give out and my alignment was all out of whack. Luckily, our friend is a mechanic and he did as much of the work off the clock as possible. We had to pay for some of it, but it probably would have cost a couple hundred more dollars if he hadn't done that for us.

Man, do I love being broke. We are down to our last $70. This sucks.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

The dairy farm

So, today was my field trip to the dairy farm. It was pretty awesome.

I have a ton of homework to do this weekend, so I'll keep my post short.

I drew blood twice, but one time I hit an artery. Not too bid a deal, the site I was drawing from has a vein and an artery right next to each other and it happens all the time. I did get a bit of poop splatter. It sorta happens and there is nothing you can do to avoid it. It's a dairy with four hundred cows. We worked on about 30 of them. They are all lined up and dirty and you sorta have to wedge your way in. You are bound to get pooped on. It's a hazard of the job.

I pilled a cow. That was fun. The first time, she spit half of it out. The second time, I held her mouth shut and her head up so she had no choice but to swallow. LOL. It worked. She did managed to drool a fair amount on me. I had to wash my jacket when I got home because she got slobber all over it. She even tried to eat my stethoscope. A classmate had to grab it off my neck to get it out of the way while I was trying to get her restrained.

We milked them to run tests and did physical exams on them. It was pretty fun. Just really cold and really poopy. It was muddy and raining, so we had the mud to contend with and in that mud was two inches of urine and feces. Luckily, it as cold, so it didn't stink. If it were summer, it would have reeked to high heaven.

Most of the cows were pretty docile. They are used to being handled, because they are milked twice a day. But we did have a few fighters. Mostly my cows. I had a knack for picking difficult cows. My first cow fought so hard against the blood draw that she fell down and we had to release her. My second blood draw cow tried to head butt me repeatedly. But it was fun and I managed to get all my skills signed off on on the first try.

I'm freezing and trying to warm up. And I still have homework to do today. :( But it was a fun day.

Our next field trip is goats. I'm super excited about that. I'm pretty excited about large animal medicine in general. It's a tough class. There is way too much work. Add that to my other two classes and I'm in overwhelmed, work overload. I will be really happy when I go to having just two classes. Just a few more weeks to go and school will calm down a bit... Hopefully.

AHH, homework here I come!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

New Years resolution... Broken

I have already broken a New Years resolution. I'm stressed about school.

It lasted all of three days. I made it, went back to school and broke it. I'm tired, I wish I had had one more week off of school and I would give anything to be graduating. I would be, if I hadn't taken my leave of absence. It's sorta bumming me out to know that my friends are graduating without me.

It's been a rough week in general. All of my tests went well. But I have a paper to write this weekend and I couldn't get my ass in gear today. I slept until 2pm. I have no idea what my problem was. I just couldn't wake up. Caffeine didn't help me at all.

I'm getting closer to finals, which is always a stressful time and the military owes us money again. It's been six weeks. We have called every week for the last three weeks, trying to figure out why we haven't been paid. We called three times a day, everyday, for the last week. No one has bothered to call us back. Yet again, no one cares that we didn't get paid. We are broke, we have bills to pay and we have to borrow money from my parents, yet again, to pay them.

On the bright side, the hubby is going back to work in a week. He said he's going to pickup all the overtime he can. That will help us out a lot. He also has a bunch of vacation he can cash out, so that will help too. But we can't do anything until he goes back, or we get paid, which ever comes first.

I think I'm just a bit overwhelmed with life.

Our friends just found out they are having a baby. I should be happy for them, but I'm actually really bummed. They were like us. They weren't going to have kids, ever. The four of us were going to travel and grow old together. We live next to each other, and we were a team. But they went and decided to have a baby. They didn't even tell us they were trying. They just announced the other day that they were six weeks along and had been trying. Good for them, sucky for us.

We are officially the last hold outs. We are officially the only ones left, who said we weren't going to have kids, who have stuck to it. It sucks. Once our friends have kids, we never see them anymore. Kids make having a social life much harder. Pretty soon, we will have no one to hang out with.

I wish I wanted kids. We could have play dates with our friends. We would be part of the club. But I don't. I never have. I keep hoping I will change my mind. My whole life people have been telling me that I would grow out of it. That I would want kids later. That I would change my mind. I've know I didn't want kids pretty much forever. And I just figured everyone was right. I figured, I would grow up and change my mind. Well, I'm a grown up and I haven't changed my mind in the slightest. It bums me out. We don't know anyone who doesn't want kids now. People said they didn't, but they have all changed their minds. We are it. It sucks.

So, I'm looking forward to finals, we are broke again, we lost our best friends, I'm tired and all my friends are graduating without me. Sad.

And I didn't manage to keep my New Years resolution. :(

Next week will be better. I only have one test. I only have one homework assignment due. It will be a fairly easy week. I will be able to sleep in. I will be able to relax a little. And then, I can get going on my other New Years resolutions. Things will be better on the other side of tomorrow, when my paper is finally written.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Years!

Well, we had friends over to ring in the new year and they ended up being here until 4 am! As much as I had fun, it was actually a bad thing... I made plans to meet up with a friend today and she lives a half hour ferry ride, and half hour drive after that, away. So, if I went to bed at 4am, I wouldn't be up until 3 or 4pm, so I wouldn't get there until late and we wouldn't have much time to spend together. Bummer. So, I opted to stay up instead. My hubby and I hung out until 6:30, then he went to bed. I played my ridiculous Facebook games and am now watching TV and doing homework.

I'm not even tired, that's the kicker. I'm wide freaking awake!

On the bright side, I will have a major presentation done, three weeks early, I might add. And I have some extra time to blog... Though, I'm still not interesting, so I don't know how good that is.

Honestly, I've been thinking about closing me blog. I love it, but never have time for it any more. I'm also starting to become really aware that people actually read it. When I started it, I promised to be extra honest on my blog, but now that I have nearly 30 people that follow, I realize that, sometimes, I'm airing rather personal things. I haven't made a final decision yet, and I would be really sad to not blog anymore... But how interesting can my blog be if I'm not honest? And, frankly, I'm not that interesting anymore anyway. It must be a bore for people to read.

Anyhoo, on to the new year! I want to make some new years resolutions this year. It will be a first, since I normally think they are silly and people never keep them anyway. But, it's a new year. I am resolved to be more patient with my husband, to stress less about school (pretty sure that one will only last a week) and, hopefully, start running again. The last one all depends on time... School doesn't afford me much free time.

This year was quite a big one. I celebrated my first wedding anniversary (alone). My husband deployed to war and came home (that sorta started in December of 2008, but I still count it because it was so late in the year). I started school. I finished the first portion of my program. I lost some dear friends (not to death, just life and the deployment) and I made some new ones.

It felt like a long year. Probably because of the deployment. It wasn't a bad year, but it wasn't my best. I'm sorta glad it's over. I'm ready to move on with my life. I'm ready to forget the friends that weren't able to handle the deployment and focus on the ones that were. I'm ready to finish school and start a new career. I'm really, really, ready to spend some time with my husband and finally start our married life together. I'm just ready to start a new year and have a new chance to get things right in my life.

I want to make some true friends this year. I vow to be more social to make that happen. I want to let go of all the bad juju that happened and all the horrible experiences I had and focus on the good in my life. I really want to forgive the people that wronged me this year. I'm not there yet, but I'm working toward that. Forgiveness is hard. Forgetting is harder. I want to be more assertive when people are taking advantage of me. I want to work on not trusting people so much. I'm too trusting for my own good, as my husband would say. I want to show the people who stood by me during the deployment my deepest appreciation and tell them how much it meant to me. (that one is also hard, I'm not good at the touchy, feely stuff).

I'm sure there are more things I need to work on. I would love to learn how to cook, but, again, time is a factor. But, man, am I a bad cook. Terrible. I would love to read more and watch TV less. The list goes on and on.

This year will be a better year. This year is gonna be great.

Here's to a new year!

I hope you all had a fun New Years Eve and I hope you all have a great new year!