We’ve begun the process for our next big military move, so I thought I would give you a few tips for how to enjoy random strangers handling your underwear and antique china while you eat pizza off of a Frisbee because you accidentally packed the paper plates while wondering when the government is going to patent the cloak of invisibility it loaned your husband. (Hint: they call the cloak “out-processing.”)
The sarcasm is strong, folks.
You’ll be tempted to complain about the fact that a power of attorney is the Holy Grail of paperwork while that fancy marriage certificate might as well be TP in the latrines. Allow me to teach you a mantra: “This is the military. Logic does not apply.” Repeat as necessary or until comatose.
Sort through and organize all your stuff because the packers will appreciate how much easier it will be to find your throw pillows to pack with your Chinese wok and your husband’s old work boots.
Cull your children’s toys to sell at the garage sale because we all know there’s nothing better for a kid whose life is being turned upside-down than getting rid of that “most favorite of all” broken McDonalds toy that said child hasn’t played with in two years.
Yell “Why do we have so much stuff?!?” every half hour throughout the packing process. It’s the military wife version of the primal scream. It also keeps your packers slightly terrified which is a good mental state for packing ceramics and glass.
Expose your children to as many friends and public places as possible as you say goodbye to your home to insure they’ll be good and sick when the move happens, preferably with different illnesses to pass between themselves during leave.
Buy an industrial-sized box of toothbrushes from Sam’s Club with which to clean your garbage can according to the housing management company’s standards.
Pin every possible restaurant, museum, and recreational facility near your new post on Pinterest because you’ll want to document how many things you never try to do.
Schedule a haircut, a dental visit, chiropractic adjustment, oil change, date night, and that visit from the Mormons you’ve been putting off all on the same day because you’re moving and you’re not looking for a new stylist, dentist, chiropractor, mechanic, babysitter, or religion for at least two months after you get to the new post.
Eat chocolate and drink coffee. I personally don’t like coffee, but I make an exception for packing household goods. Java chip frappuccinos are my drug of choice until someone invents a portable caffeine IV drip. Get thee to a Starbucks.
And most of all, keep your sense of humor. Preferably dark humor. It’s the best kind.