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Displaced

October 4, 2008

I’m not sure if this happens to everyone, but it has started to bother me with increasing magnitude.  

I grew up in Kansas City, MO.  When I moved to North Carolina it was the first time I’d ever lived away from the familiarity of my beautiful city.  The adjustment in North Carolina was almost more than I could bear.  Suddenly, I found myself driving in circles on streets that had changed names three times within as many miles.

Navigating the new territory became a challenge, I found myself wandering about, trying to find my way, physically and figuratively.  By the time we left, I became one with Fayettenamville.  I knew the back roads, the city streets and the strange circles I found myself trapped in.  I can still draw pictures in my head of exactly where I need to go to get somewhere.  

Since moving to Kansas I’ve found myself planning my day around the cut-out of Fayettenamville.  I’ll head left down Cliffdale, take a right… in to Target, stop by Home Depot… across the street I’ll run in to Michaels, then down Skibo to All American… take a left and in to JoAnns.  Dash onto All American, off at Sante Fe headed to the Commissary.  Only, I’m not there anymore.  I haven’t been for 15 months.  

Often while at work, when my mind is focused on something important, I find myself mindlessly listing my errands to be run at lunch… but I’ve got it all wrong.  I’m in Kansas.  I can’t do things with the efficiency I spent five years cultivating.  I have to find new paths, new back roads… new places.  It seems to me, I should have already done this.  

The truth is, I love where we are.  Given the opportunity, I’d stay here.  I love our house, our neighborhood, the incredible proximity to my family.  I’d retire here, given the option.  Of course, that’s not the life I signed up for as a military wife.  I signed up for a lifetime of forging new friendships, finding new paths… reaching further.  A lifetime of nomadic adventure.

Does this happen to other military wives or nomads?  I know you’re out there, reading my words and thinking to yourself, “Yes… I can’t figure out where I am half the time!” or, “No… crazy woman… figure out where the hell you are!”  Am I crazy?

Furthermore, I plead to Webster… could you please add Milwife under the definition of nomad?  I can’t see how it’s not fitting.

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Tracey permalink
    October 4, 2008 19:01

    Oh boy do I understand! Hubby was USMC during the first years of our marriage. Got out after 13 years in. We lived all over to include Japan. I cried the most when we moved to California. I never knew where I was because the ocean was on the wrong side! ( I was from NY).

    I joined Operation Baking Gals and mailed out my first box today. Can’t wait to do it again!

  2. Ted and Kristin permalink
    October 5, 2008 03:38

    Hmmm… I don’t know… (wink)…. I feel like every place we move is EXACTLY the same as the last (place)… Arizona, NY, NC, RI…. South Korea… you know? I totally feel like I’m right back on Cape Cod with each new location…

    hee…hee…haaa..haa…..

    I think the reason I don’t know any better is because I didn’t really grow up any”where”… I moved nine times w/my family (Mom, Dad, etc…)…. four times before marriage, and six times since marriage…..

    Funny thing. We were in RI such a short time that I always referred to everything as if we were still in NC… the hospital was Womak, the grocery store was Harris Teeter, etc…. Once someone asked us where we live and I replied “NC” … Ted just looked at me… I was like..what? He said ‘hon, where DO WE live?” I said ‘NORTH CAROLINA……’… I think he asked me again with a really strange expression before I realized I actually had NO IDEA where we lived anymore. 🙂

  3. October 5, 2008 09:18

    I moved from the city 8 years ago. I still don’t know this town beyond the few blocks around me. It amazes some people. Take me away from my house and I lose my bearings. 🙂
    Fortunately, I don’t drive. I can’t get too lost on foot.

  4. October 7, 2008 07:07

    I have serious wanderlust and love to move-but somehow I feel like I owe it to my kids to plant some roots. I love everywhere we’ve ever lived for different reasons. Every place has its charms.
    I’m hopeless with directions so it takes me months to find my way around.

  5. Trish permalink
    October 7, 2008 09:33

    Oh I can imagine how hard it is to find your way around new places…..I got lost trying to find your house last week, leaving from downtown Kansas City….where I have lived MY ENTIRE LIFE! LOL….

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