In approximately six to eight months, my husband and I will be moving back to the States. We don’t have orders yet, but our departure is inevitable. Already, I have signs of nostalgia as we prepare to leave. Every encounter is met with a twinge of sadness as I realize it might be my “LAST” – Last chance for Christmas markets, last season to Ski the Alps, last squadron ball and the list goes on. So, needless to say, the thought of leaving Germany makes me sad. Yet, in all honesty, I am excited too. Excited because I know a new adventure awaits me back in the States.
So being the Type-A person that I am, my thoughts are already consumed with preparations for the move. Admittedly though, I am feeling a little helpless and out of the loop. Emotionally I am annoyed that we don’t have orders, but am logically aware that this is the norm. So, I am currently living in a state of peaceful anxiety. Ha – whatever that means!
As a spouse, there are many things involved in a PCS move that are – and will always be – out of my control. So no matter how manic I become, I have to remind myself to calm down and breathe. Understandably, most big-ticket items like housing, transportation, finance and so on can’t be done until our orders are cut. And even then, most of the tasks will fall on my husband’s shoulders. But in the meantime, there are a lot of small things that I can do now to lessen the burden later.
With that being said, I have started keeping a running list of things I can do to assist. Your ideas and suggestions are encouraged as well. Feel free to comment below with your input so it can be added to the list. Hopefully this list will continue to grow and become a helpful community resource.
- Start a savings account for unexpected expenses that we may encounter during the move
- Start packing-up seasonal clothing and decorations that have passed
- Ensure our vehicle information is correct and complete – customs, sales tax, title transfers, etc…
- Ensure we have turned in all of our VAT forms and none are missing
- Read over our housing contract and develop a move-out plan
- Make sure all passport, birth certificates and command sponsorship information is complete and correct
- Attend the ACS Smooth Move Class that is offered monthly
AFTER ORDERS ARE RECEIVED
- Attend the levy briefing with my husband
- Research our next duty station and develop a plan for arrival
- Work with my husband to develop a list of clearing appointments
I’ll expand in detail on each of these items in their own separate blog. Sign-up now to follow my blog so you are kept in the loop. Over the next few months, I will provide you with the resources available to you as a spouse.
On a final note — as an Army spouse we are constantly living in a world of UNKNOWNS. The majority of us don’t know when we will be leaving Schweinfurt or where we will be going next. This can be frustrating. However, we must remember that we cannot worry about the things that are out of our control. I may not know where I am going next or when, but I do have control over the plan I establish to get me there. That’s why I am starting now. Hope you can join me in doing the same.