Change is something a military family comes to accept as a way of life. Things are constantly in motion. Our family has moved thirteen times in Pete's twenty-year career. The temporal nature of life is the only thing that really seems permanent. Ironic, no?
Standing in the threshhold of a new way of life, Pete and I (but especially Pete, who was also the son of a career soldier) are having a bit of a rough time adjusting our brains to think bigger than a three-year assignment. It's not easy to make the transition from the "dictated" way life has been lived for the last two decades to thinking that WE will be making the decisions from here on out. Where we live, when we take vacation time, our school schedule, all of it has been determined by the military for so long. You just tend to forget how that gets done when someone isn't telling you how to do it! Just the simple thought that this house we'll close on next week could actually be our HOME for the next.....well, till it's paid off.....that's not as easy to wrap our minds around as you'd think! We're learning fast, though!
The change in our children....that's another story altogether. What's funny is that every now and then, we run across someone at a homeschool or church function who remembers us from the very first time we lived here, nineteen years ago. They'll say something about how they remember that REALLY young couple with the little baby boy who loved to bounce on Mama's lap, and how MUCH things have changed now that the little boy is an adult and we're toting around his six little sisters. Believe me, we're reminded all too often of how quickly kids grow up. We'll have one of our girls talking about being a bride for Halloween while another is actually older than I was when I wore a wedding dress for real! We're all too aware that it seems like just yesterday that the child who is now preparing to deploy to Afghanistan was laying on the couch learning how to get his hands into his mouth to chew on. And we know it won't be long till our little stairstep girls are all the same height. Maybe that's another "side effect" of having such a large separation between our olders and youngers--we can actually SEE how quickly they go from babies to adults!
I'm reminded daily that I just have to be more diligent in taking GOOD pictures of the kids--and that they really do need to be labeled, because oh MY....our girls have a bad habit of looking just way too much alike at different phases of life! We took an impromptu trip over to the Botanical Gardens last weekend and got some pretty good pics; now I just need a few of their brother (that don't show the horrid tattoos he's defiled himself with) and the time to actually do some scrapbooking so I can freeze at least one moment in time.