Life really changes when you get out of the military, even for spouses. My husband got out of the Marine Corps officially on May 1st, but went on terminal leave in April, so we have been living the civilian life for going on 2 months now. In this short time I have noticed so many changes, BIG & little. Getting used to being in the civilian world will take a bit. Here’s a list of the 10 things I’ve learned about being out of the military.
- Laundry. It has doubled! Now my husband picks out his clothes every morning, and then I have to wash them! He doesn’t wear the same uniform everyday anymore and my washing machine notices!
- Grocery Shopping. It’s a strange feeling to walk into the grocery store to see there are hundreds of carts available, the aisles aren’t bombarded with families, and best of all no check out lines!
- Insurance. We may have taken TRICARE for granted before. Insurance isn’t free and there are way too many options.
- 1st & 15th. They are just days out here in the civilian world. Not days to avoid going shopping or eating out either. Just regular days.
- Traffic. It’s not all going the same direction at the same time, for the most part. People complain about traffic, and I just think to myself… try to get off base at 4:oopm.
- Dress Code. No more worrying if I’m covered up enough (not that I want to bare all). I can go to the convenient store in a bathing suit if I wanted (living in Florida now, this is acceptable). My husband doesn’t need to worry about a change of clothes if he wants to grab dinner on the way home or do anything on the way home for that matter.
- Hair cut. I used to wait in the car on Sundays while my husband ran in to get his hair cut. I did this one afternoon while we were running errands in our new civilian life. I was waiting for over a half hour! What used to be quick 15 minute trips to the barber have been replaced with an hour of pampering, but at least the barber now knows my husband’s name. Oh, did I mention the cost is nearly double! $18 for a hair cut! Good thing it isn’t mandatory to get one every week.
- Neighbors. We moved into a cute neighborhood, in a college town. Not one of our neighbors have introduced themselves, without reason. We’ve met 2 of our many neighbors out of necessity. We’re not in base housing anymore (clicking my heels).
- MOS. Huh??? Out in the real world, they don’t use acronyms for everything! You actually have to ask someone, what’s your job or career? No more military acronyms, terminology, and slag. I can’t say that I’m sad about it. I will say, it will take some getting used to.
- Last names. People have first names, too??? Who knew! Calling people by their first name is a new one. Or better yet, not having name their last name on everything (uniforms, gear, equipment, even underwear).
These are just a few things I’ve noticed so far. Care to add your own to the list? Comment below, I’d love to hear yours.
PS. I know this isn’t photography related, but I’m sure you won’t mind.