Every few years my world, like other Navy spouses, descends into chaos. As a military spouse you know what I mean. It begins when your service member enters that abyss of negotiating for their next set of orders. Where will these orders take us? Where will the DoD/DoN decide my husband is 'crucial' to mission success?
As spouses we begin running all the scenarios in our minds. If these orders take us here, than we can do this; but if those orders take us there, then that. It is dizzying! Will we find ourselves in the hurricane prone and humid southeast, or overseas, perhaps Guam, Japan or Spain. Or will we be sent to the rain-soaked and moldy Pacific Northwest or god-forsaken China-Lake (my apologies to those who like it there)? Will I have a life there? Will I survive our tour there?
Last year my husband and I went through this process yet again. It was a frustrating time when finally my husband informed me we had orders in hand. "We are going to a smaller base in southern California called Naval Base Ventura County." he said. And with this announcement I called my best friend at my current base to give her the 'orders update." She squealed in excitement, "You're going to Navy Heaven!"
Navy Heaven? I didn't know such a thing could exist? Isn't that an oximoron? My friend explained the 'heaven' that awaited me. From the beautiful climate, solid economy, location, location, location, as well as the outstanding base services. I had won the 'orders lottery'!
This was too much for me to believe. Afterall, wasn't I told that I would 'absolutely love' San Diego (Yeah, loved three robberes in nine months and especially enjoyed a little something called the San Diego Fires)? Then I was told I would fall in love with the lush, green (rainy, moldy) Pacific Northwest? Did I mention that it rains there, A LOT?
How could I possibly put stock in the claims of Navy Heaven existing at Naval Base Ventura County (NBVC)? Laying skepticism aside I began the moving process, researched neighborhoods, schools, educational opportunities, recreational opportunities including the arts, and of course, crime rates.
Scott, my sailor, had a school between bases which afforded us an opportunity to visit Ventura County prior to PCS'ing (Permanent Change of Station). That trip was last October. The first thing I noticed was a distinct lack of rain. Next was that beautiful orange ball in the sky, the sun. The more we explored the base and the county the more eager I became to move and settle in. I was beginning to think there was such a thing as Navy Heaven, but of course I reserved the right to change my opinion.
I now call Oxnard my home. We are settled in (yes, all boxes are unpacked and gone) and each day I awaken to my own piece of Navy Heaven. This is my seventh move since marrying my sailor. And since we arrived things have been amazing. I celebrated my first birthday 'with' my husband here. We celebrated the first anniversary of our marriage 'together' here. (To civilian readers, many military families spend numerous holidays, birthdays, anniversaries and other special events apart). We have enjoyed spending our weekends discovering all the county has to offer.
No this blog is not about Ventura County. This blog is for and about all things Navy 'spousedom' and their families, especially those sharing the base I call home.
Till next time...Beth