May 8, 2012
Bahrain or Not?! That Is The Question
Over the weekend, the Sailor and I had yet one more discussion about where we are headed to next.
It turns out that the command where he is currently stationed for shore duty, is starting a new division, that will act as ship support for different deploying fleets. The Sailors assigned to this would be stationed here, but would travel with deploying ships. It would be considered a ship duty rotation, even though he isn't directly attached to any one ship.
The upside to this, is that we absolutely love living where we are currently stationed. In fact, the Sailor and I have discussed at length, the possibility of moving back here to live, once he retires. One of the issues, the Sailor is having right now is that if he goes back to a normal ship rotation billet, he will retire while still on a ship. This makes networking and looking for work out in the civilian world difficult, particularly, if potential employers wish to have him come in to interview for open positions.
Not to mention the fact, that I can pretty much guarantee that unless we are here till he retires, any duty station that we wind up next, would not be the place we would ultimately wish to retire. The cons to having the Sailor take a position here and acting as ship support, is that he would be gone for most of the year, every year that he is attached to this command. We're talking he'd be gone 6-9 months out of year. Which is a long time to be away from family, especially when it's every year, with less than 6 months between the time he comes home and the time he would go out again.
Still, living here for another 4-5 years, really wouldn't bother me. Even if it meant that the Sailor might be gone for most of the time.
Now, the Sailor came home last night and informed me that he would not be able to put in for early detachment, like he had originally hoped to do. Because the window for him to start looking at new orders is happening in September, right now, he would have to take whatever they offered him, in order to detach early, and if he refused, which he would have the option to do, he would wind up with a really undesirable billet when his window opened up, and we'd be forced to take it.
So he continued the conversation by telling me that there's a possibility that he could ask to take an open billet to Bahrain. It would be unaccompanied of course, and he would only have to be there for 1 year. That billet would count time wise, as if he had just completed a 3 year ship rotation, and when he returned, he would go back to shore duty, and most likely have pick of orders. Which would mean, that he could potentially come right back here to where we are now, and finish out his time in on shore duty here.
I don't relish the idea of the Sailor going to the middle east for a year. It's not exactly my dream location for him to be. Then the question that rises is, where would we go for the year he is on an unaccompanied tour. I don't know that we could remain here in housing, if he is no longer attached to the command here. It's clearly not a deployment. But, I really don't want to go back home to California for a year, just to move back here to where we are now, and have to re-establish a home here.
It opens up the question of what we are going to do next, and what's best for us as a family, and for the Sailor, career wise.
What would you do in this situation?!