Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Back at it!

Okay, so I didn't realize that people actually kept up with my little ole blog, but apparently some of you do! I apologize for just up and quitting with the updates; I'm changing my ways today (New Year, New Leaf and all that).

As all of you know by now, I'm BACK!! : ) My last post was about my latest European adventure in May...quite some time ago now. Right after that trip ended I decided to put in my application to transfer within the USO to a Stateside position. I've always said timing is everything and that whatever is meant to be will be, and it was my time to come home.

Up until I saw the job posting I had no intentions to come back to the US. Don't get me wrong, I love my country, but I wasn't sure I was ready to give up my life: my world travels, my desert family, my troops, everything. My world had truly shifted over the course of a couple of years. My "normal" was living in barracks, sharing showers, eating in the DFAC, interacting with local Qatari, and living in the pockets (sharing a life) of the soldiers deployed on my base. Freedoms were limited, privacy was non-existent, days, weeks, and months ran together. My life was split between work and travel;  I absolutely loved every second of it.

Saying goodbye was difficult. I left Qatar and my life there just two months shy of my two year mark of entering the Middle East. I boarded my plane to America and haven't had too much time to look back since.

I arrived in Virginia Beach, Va on a Friday night, and I started my new position as the Mobile Unit Manager on the following Monday. Talk about a whirlwind. Friends and former coworkers that had left the SWA region before me had been kind enough to email me tips on readjusting to being back home- they were extremely helpful. One friend wrote, "don't take offense when your old friends don't include you in everything. You've been gone for two years: they aren't doing it to hurt you, they will just take awhile to remember you're back".

Thankfully, my transition back went extremely smooth. My bosses gave me ample time to find a place to live and move, to take care of whatever I needed to do, all while still giving me ample training. I love my new office and coworkers and am really enjoying the Virginia Beach area. I found a great condo with really nice owners, I feel safe and secure when I'm there and feel that my belongings are safe when I'm on the road for work. I purchased a car: a 2011 Prius that I'm in love with; his name is River and he is amazing.

I've gotten to enjoy both Thanksgiving and Christmas with my family (gasp: TWO holidays home? Insanity), catch up with my greatly missed and neglected friends, and do a lot of traveling throughout the US for work. I've been home for almost six months now and to say that I haven't missed desert life would be a lie, but I am so grateful for my new USO adventure and the life that I am building here.  This year will bring a lot of work related travel as well as new friends and adventures that I'll be sure to update y'all on. For now, I'm thankful for being back in the fantastic United States of America. I'm grateful that I am so close to family and friends and I am looking forward to what 2013 has to offer!