I was never really exposed to the military life/lifestyle, although in hindsight there is one similarity to how I grew up- that is moving around every couple of years or so. I remember having gone to a few of the military bases in Germany when I attended the International School of Brussels. I ran cross-country one year and every weekend our races were held in various locations around Europe, with a few of them being in US military bases (Bitburg, AFCENT and Ramstein). There was an ex, whose brother was a Marine that we went to visit a couple of times in Virginia when we used to go down to visit my parents. But for the most part, the military life was not in my realm at all. Until now.
After high school, I attended New York University and Manhattan being Manhattan, you met people from all walks of life. Most of my friends during those years didn’t actually attend NYU, but were friends I made through our common interests and admittedly through the bars I used to frequent. Occasionally you would meet the random sailor during Fleet Week but not really. And while I lived in London, I definitely was not exposed to the military at all.
So now I find myself in a relationship with B, who is in the USN, and initially the idea of dating a military guy is always viewed through rose coloured glasses, but the reality is a lot harder than I thought it would be. And I am no stranger to long distance relationships… But this one, man…! I’ts been the toughest one to date. Yet, it has also been strangely rewarding because of B. It feels right, although admittedly I do sometimes grapple with not being able to see him as frequently as I would like (and I could go all mushy on you if you want!). And oh, I also need a tourist visa to Japan – annoying!!
The beginning of our relationship, I spent a lot of time doing my due diligence on what it would really mean to be in a relationship with B. Of course if it was a “normal” LDR, it would have been a walk in the park. And so through the joys of Google, I found a treasure chest of information and by that I mean all the MILSO blogs. Luckily my job at the moment has been quite slow, so I had a lot of hours to kill and I started devouring these blogs. Who knew there were soo many!! Its been quite entertaining and informative to a newbie like me, but also initially, I admit, it scared the sh*t out of me. Would I fit in into this world? Over the months, I have luckily calmed down and also came to my senses. We are all in it together and there will always be common ground to bond over, no matter where we previously came from. And nothing a good bottle of wine can’t fix, am I right?
And so I begin documenting my journey… However, being in the Little Red Dot keeps me separated from really experiencing the military life as a girlfriend. That’s not to say I haven’t already experienced the ways that the Navy controls you! But, that is another story, for another day…