March 25, 2014

air force adventures

I briefly mentioned here that the reason John and I had such a short engagement was that my sister Juli was leaving for Air Force Basic Training on January 7. Our choices were to get married before she left, or wait until she was in tech school (but even then, time off wouldn't be guaranteed). Since she was the only person I wanted next to me (you know, expect for John), we opted for a January 4th wedding.

So, after 10 weeks of not being able to see or talk to my sister (she did get to call a few times, and I wrote her almost every day), this past weekend we went down to watch her go from Trainee to Airman.

attempt at a selfie on the plane
John and I flew down to San Antonio on Wednesday evening, along with my mom and step-dad, my Opa and his wife, and my dad and three of his kids.

Graduation is a few days of ceremonies and rituals, starting with the Airman's Run on Thursday morning. This was the first time we got to see Juli, and it was literally her running by us.

waiting for Juli to run by

After waiting nearly three hours, the Coin Ceremony started, which is when all the Trainees receive their Airman Coin, and make their official transition from Trainee to Airman. We got to see Juli immediately after, and everyone was a crying mess.

Juli wasn't able to leave the base at all on Thursday, so we made the most of our time there.

a few of my favorite guys 

Juli teaching Sam how to march

After her graduation ceremony on Friday, she was allowed to leave base, and we spent most of our time a) eating (apparently AF food isn't that great), b) exploring the San Antonio Riverwalk, and c) relaxing at the hotel.

i'm sad because 17 yr old sister Amy told me I don't know how to selfie

She had to wear her fancy blue uniform while we were out and about, and couldn't do things like wear sunglasses, eat and walk at the same time, or talk on a cell phone while walking. So many rules! Despite their strict code of conduct, Juli loves it. (I am convinced I would not make it in the military.)

Now she's off to her tech school for the next few months, still out of state, but now she's able to have her cell phone. At least we'll get to talk more often. 

I'm so proud of her, and really excited for this next stage in her life. Congratulations Airman Schroeder!

March 12, 2014

on marriage

I’m here! I’m still blogging. Or rather, I’m thinking about blogging a lot, scribbling notes of things I’d like to write about, but never finding the time to actually do it.

Life seems busier than usual, and I suppose it should be. We are two-in-one now, meaning John’s worries, needs, habits, and rituals are mine, too, generally speaking. I am working to discover a balance between I and he and we. There is room for growth, to be sure.

One thing I've long known: We tend to show the worst version of ourselves to people we are the closest to.  There comes a point in time when it’s impossible to hide our ugly side, and when you live, carpool, and work with someone, that point seems to come much more quickly. (On any given day we’re never more than 30 feet apart. For serious.)

Last week, after an impressively stressful day at work, we began our commute home, John driving, me in the passenger seat. We didn’t speak, leaving me to stew over the day in my pounding head. When we got home I got straight into bed and began to cry. John (and Carl) came in to see what was wrong, but I didn’t have an answer. John stayed on the bed and rubbed my back until it became clear that it was, at that point, a futile exercise. He left the room.

Eventually I stopped stress-crying and managed to make it through an episode of Chopped on Hulu before the bedroom door opened again, and John walked in. With pizza. Arranged in a bowl (because that’s how I usually eat meals- I have no idea why- and John makes fun of me for it). And then he left the room, leaving me alone to eat pizza out of a bowl in bed, because he knew that’s what the day called for.

So marriage… It’s nothing like I thought it would be, but everything I hoped it would be, if that makes any sense at all.