I went out with a good friend of mine this weekend and we had a lenghty discussion about being in the Navy. We talked about crappy it can be, but we also talked about our favorite things, the people, the challenges, and the ever changing landscape. Sometimes, I fear that when I get out, I will be absolutely miserable.
I really, truly enjoy being in the Navy. There are times that are so exhilirating, I don't think that I will ever be able to find a job that matches this in excitement and mental challenge. I know that I have often complained about my Office Space-like activities, but truthfully, I find what I do most day very exciting. For example, in the past few months, I have worked on projects related to the Gulf Oil Spill, Haiti, and the Nashville floods. We have also been in more tactical exercises that keep our warfighting skills fresh. And that has only been at this job. At my other jobs, I have shot missiles, driving ships, and gotten a Masters degree. I have the priviledge and challenge of undertaking a new job every 18 to 24 months and none of them have been dull.
The thought of getting out and going to work in an office terrifies me. I can't stand the idea of doing the same old thing for years and years. I know that getting out is what I want to do. I know that the challenges that my and J's jobs together present to our family are too great. I also know that the Navy is where J is meant to be. He without a doubt loves what he is doing and will continue to love it for the next 20 odd years. He is already half way to retirement as well (though I doubt he will retire at 20). I also know that there is no way that I can just stay home. I know that I would be climbing the walls, ready to tear my hair out in a matter of months, so I have to find something.
Thankfully, this decision is still year's away, but this conversation got me thinking even more about what my plan is once I get out. I have seriously considered several non-traditional post Navy jobs, like culinary school or working for an animal rescue organizations. But, I still have serious doubts that anything will be able to provide me with the same level of thrill that being an officer in the world's most powerful Navy has.