Sunday, May 3, 2009

The Marine Corps and Semper Gumby

The Marine Corps motto is "Semper Fidelis", or "Always Faithful" in Latin. As Marines, we have a motto that we say to each other: Semper Gumby, or Always Flexible.
See, the Marine Corps tends to occasionally throw curveballs at its servicemembers. Case in point? My husband and his orders.
For a background: He is an E-8, which is the rank of Master Sergeant. (Incidentally, I'm an E-5, which is a whole 'nother story in itself.) He got selected for a pretty impressive position working in Washington, D.C. He is currently working at a university teaching ROTC candidates. I chose orders to Quantico, VA, because of the close proximity to where he will be. We didn't want our monsters to be separated from him while they are so young. I received my orders to report in on May 15th to Quantico, expecting him to be showing up around that time as well.
Last week, we were told that he might not be going to DC after all. His monitor (the Marine who selects where to place Marines across the Corps) is telling him that he might have to be stationed at Camp Lejeune, NC or Camp Pendleton, CA. Being from San Diego, hearing that really stings.
Our options at this point:
1) He gets his orders to DC, and all is well with the world. (With the exception of my usual bitching when winter comes around on the East Coast.)
2)He gets orders to somewhere else at Quantico due to the Marine Corps actually instituting the policy that it will "try" to station married Marines within 50 miles of each other.
3) He gets orders to CL or CP, and I deny my orders, effectively ending MY Marine Corps career and getting "blacklisted" from reenlistment. (Obviously, this really isn't an option for me.)
4) He gets orders to CL or CP and we live apart for the next three years, seeing each other every couple of months.

Let's all pray for #1, or at the very least #2. I really don't want to contemplate the other two options at this point. Call me an ostrich with my head in the sand.

The funny thing is, through it all, I still love my Corps. When this is all said and done, I may be grumbling under my breath, but nothing can ever make me hate the Marine Corps. Might be hard for others to grasp, but my loyalty will never waiver. I just hope its loyalty to me doesn't either.