For a long time, the scariest thing I could imagine was the idea of leaving the military life behind and moving on to the civilian world once again. The reasons are pretty simple: It’s very much a situation that requires a whole lotta life organization and when you’ve lived in the military for so long there is a lot of that organization that is done for you. The military pays most of our rent and hooks us up with medical care and although it is really shitty medical care and really shitty dental and even though it is life insurance that is rather shady… it is stuff that is there and not to be worried about too much.
Our credit sucks. We have no savings. The idea of trying to find a house and organizing medical insurance and making sure that we have all of our ducks in a row is terrifying. This is funny because it is a rather stupid trade off. Dean was smart when he signed up for the military and he stayed as far away from infantry as humanly possible. You join up as infantry and you might as well become a lifer because there are no real jobs for you on the outside with infantry as your qualification. Say you decide to get out after ten years… you have just wasted your time and are right back at the beginning unless you have gone to college and are otherwise qualified.
Dean chose a different route and got himself into communications working with networks and satellites and all that sort of shit that I don’t understand. This was a smart move because there are places for him to work all over the country and all over the world in just about every city and they are very well paying jobs. We know so many people who have gone on to get jobs after commo paying as much as 100.00 a year with 70,000 a year being pretty standard. One of the reasons people in Dean’s job get these opportunities is because most of these telecom companies require a security clearance that costs them thousands and thousands of dollars to acquire for each employee. They love hiring commo guys because they already have the required security clearance and so they don’t have to flip the bill.
This is like high school all over again with the bad asses snickering at the intellectuals and calling them big dorks and then it’s the big dorks that walk away with all the money. To join up as infantry you need the lowest scores you can get on your asvabs. The highest GT score you can get on your asvabs is 130 and Dean got a 128 and so he was immediately recruited for some of the crazier jobs. One section of the asvab is decoding and it’s very difficult. Basically, you are given about two minutes to decode a transcript and most people don’t finish it. Dean not only finished it, but he got a perfect score and the result of this was insane. They called him in as fast as shit and tried to sign him up for military intelligence and he actually did initially sign up for just that. Then, at the last minute, he reneged and went commo fearing that to be M.I. would keep him at Gitmo or some other country forever.
Now, about once every couple of months he gets letters asking him to switch over to MI. He gets requested to be an interrogator which will have him gone alll the time and so he turns them down. At one point, he was offered a job working at a desk quite literally decoding things for the military and he almost took them up on it. I don’t remember why he turned them down but I think it had something to do with the two years he’d be gone away from the family for training.
There has not been a lot of talk from the unit about Dean getting out and it’s very strange. As most of you know, it is something we have intended to fight tooth and nail. Dean had orders to go to Iraq in April and then last week they had those orders replaced with new orders for “an undisclosed location in the middle east”. Considering that orders to Iraq or Kuwait or Afghanistan state as much, we are suddenly very worried that this undisclosed location might just be a little place that rhymes with “Iran” and there is no fucking way in hell we’re on board for that.
Now, we are feeling very good about getting out. We should have done it a long ass time ago seeing as how the pay is shit and the lifestyle is shit. It’s amazing how scary such a thing can be even though the differences are so extreme. It terrifies me to leave but holy shit it will be great once the worst is over.
Now, I’m sort of excited about the idea of being free from a lifestyle we don’t agree on. I’m still scared but I’m more excited than I have been in a long time. The opportunities are endless and we could quite literally choose to go just about anywhere.
But I’m not going to think about it anymore today because I’m sick as a dog and going to bed.