We have all been there when our husband/wife breaks the news that their orders are not for one of the duty stations on their “list”. In fact, it is the very last place you want to go! It could be far from family or too cold or too hot or you have heard nothing but bad things about that particular base/post. So, how does one accept fate and move on and make the best of it? I have talked about making the best of a bad duty station but that was geared more towards when the duty station isn’t going well for one reason or another. Since, I find myself in this situation I’m going to share with you the tips I’m going to use to make Hawaii a successful duty station.
1. Get involved! Find something to volunteer for like the command FRG, Ombudsman/Key Spouse, Chapel Counsel, FFSC or NMCRS. Other great volunteer opportunities are things for kids like the PTO, MWR Youth Sports (coaching), Boy/Girl Scouts. Joining groups is another way to be involved. They could include Mommy and Me, MOPS or running clubs like Stroller Warriors(if there is a chapter). Getting involved will help you meet people and help give you purpose. So, get out, get involved and stop thinking about how much you don’t want to be where you currently are.
2. Have an open mind. It never fails that as soon as you start telling friends where you will be moving the opinions start flowing. The good, bad and the ugly! It can be overwhelming and confusing on how one should feel. Right now for me, I have my reasons for feeling apprehensive about moving to Hawaii but everyone I know is jealous of me. It makes me feel like I have to be excited. But, I’m going to give this island a chance because I never know….. I might just like it. Deployments and all!
3. Set long term goals. Setting goals for yourself could be a wide variety of things. For myself, I’m going to run a marathon. I made a promise to myself that I would run one if I went back to Japan or moved to Hawaii (go figure!). We are also planning a trip to visit Japan since MAC flights will be easy to come by. Setting long term goals to accomplish before you leave gives a person drive and can help the time go by faster.
4. Be a tourist! DO NOT SIT HOME! As military families we are so lucky to get to travel all over the world at the government’s expense so do not sit at home (or on base) being mad you had to move to “that city”. Head over to ITT find things to do (and get the discount). You very well may discover you like the city through something touristy you did. Check out restaurants, too. Japan wasn’t my favorite place but I loved the food and a few other things and I do miss them. This was possible because even though I wasn’t crazy about living there I didn’t sit at home.
5. Accept where you are and be at peace with it. When you do this then you can truly open up and be able to do the first four tips. I’m done being upset about Hawaii. I can’t change the fact that we are moving there so it’s time to start making it the best duty station I can. I do have two little people who are expecting that of me. Being unhappy and counting down the days till I leave are not an option!
The fact is when I board that plane in January I’m going to cry. I will miss New Orleans terribly but I owe it to myself to follow my tips and make the best of a place I don’t want to go.