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Your Career

One Sailor's Experience with Career Intermission - Part 2

Getting out

As I'm typing this today, I have 20 days left until I separate from the Navy and three more working days here at the command.

Career Intermission Blog Part 2 graphic.

Career Intermission Blog Part 2 graphic.

Everyone around the office is telling me how lucky I am, and asking me how I'm able to contain my excitement. Even my wife has been counting down the days to my "freedom." As for me, the finality of it all is coming down in all the worst ways. I feel like I have a million tasks to accomplish in less than a month and each minute that goes by is the clock ticking closer to my most certain demise; as though the hand will strike midnight on Dec. 29th and my entire world as I know it, will implode.

Most Sailors know that any move made in, out or around the Navy, requires the completion of heaps of numbered forms. So between decoding and completing endless forms and counselings, scheduling movers, packing, registering for classes and celebrating the holidays, my brain is fried; there's just so much that needs to be done. For example, once I separate, I have to figure out life insurance, Tricare for my wife and I, delivery of my household goods, storage, new registration and tags for two vehicles and probably 10 more things escaping me at the moment.

There's also the whole question of whether or not I should get a job. My current plan doesn't involve me seeking employment unless it's something that will lend to me becoming an effective Navy Public Affairs Officer down the road. I refuse going to work at the mall or waiting tables. Not that the work is beneath me, it's just not what I took a break from the Navy to do. I plan to live off the BAH I get from the Post 9/11 G.I. Bill and whatever my wife decides to let me dip into of her income as she'll be working full time. The projected budget works on paper, but the life style that an E-5 paycheck on the first and the 15th allowed may have to be scaled back for the intents and purposes of being a student. We plan to move from a 1300 sq. ft. home in the city to a 600 sq. ft. apartment near the beach in Florida, A.K.A. the land of no state income tax. If that's not enough financial fat trimming, then perhaps that top tier Netflix membership should be downgraded or maybe the cats will have to settle for Wal-Mart brand cat food in lieu of the organic stuff that costs an arm and a leg. They'll just need to understand that this is a transitional time and that the whole family needs to be willing to sacrifice.

In all honesty, the job and money situation are two things that weigh heavily on my mind. In a perfect world, I'd find some awesome part-time opportunity that will give me flexibility and allow me to cut my teeth doing public relations for a Fortune 500 company. What the job issue ultimately boils down to is this: my first priority is college and my education. Anything I can do to make money will have to come secondary and be part time. Plus I know that any job that appeals to me may not pay well or will require way more time and energy than I'm willing to commit. I've put together a resume and will keep my ear to the ground for the right opportunity so you could describe my employment seeking efforts as moderately active at best.

This is just a short list of the things swirling through my brain. Ten years from now, when I'm Time Magazine's Person of the Year and they ask me how I've become so successful, I'll reminisce fondly on what now may be the most stressful time of my life and I'll say that I just handled one small thing at a time. Until then, I'm very much looking forward to this new year when the dust is settled and I have a better grip on this juncture of my new freedom.

Read Part 1 of MC2 Timberlake's blog.