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2008 was a year of change
Notes from an almost military spouse
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The author Robert C. Gallagher said, “Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.”
Trapped Snickers bars aside, the truth of this statement hit home as I sat down at my laptop this week and suddenly realized that this would be the last column I would write in 2008.  How could time fly by so fast?  It seems like just a week ago, I was ringing in 2008, and now it’s nearly over.  
At this time each year, I like to pause to reflect on where I’ve been over the past year, and where I’ll be going over the year ahead. And this year, I have more changes to reflect on than I’ve ever had before.
One year ago, I was still a full-time student. I hadn’t yet moved to Georgia, and the idea of becoming a military spouse was as foreign to me as, say, packing up and moving to Greenland. I wasn’t engaged yet, and getting married was not an idea that was anywhere on my radar.  It’s amazing how much your priorities can change in such a short time.  
For New Year’s Eve 2007, I had come to Savannah over the academic winter break to visit my fiancé (who, at the time, was still my boyfriend). It was only the second time I had ever set foot in Georgia, and I really wasn’t sure what to expect. But my guy, ever the planner, relished the idea of playing tour guide and showing me around his adopted Southern hometown. For 10 days, we visited every historic home, building and fort in the coastal region, and ate at more restaurants than I can even remember. By the end of my visit, I had decided that Savannah was really a pretty nice place to visit.
If 2008 had a theme, for me it would have been facing the unexpected and deciding that it wasn’t so bad after all.  Deciding to leave graduate school and pursue a career in writing and journalism, was a scary decision because it meant leaving life as a student – the only occupation I’d ever known – and jumping headfirst into the unknown.  Becoming a soon-to-be military spouse meant confronting all of the unknowns that come with that lifestyle — the moving, the uncertainty, the unfamiliarity.  
But, in the end, I wouldn’t change either of these decisions.  Even though change isn’t easy, my life has become many times richer this year because of it.  I’ve gained a new home, a fiancé, and many close friends, and I’m looking forward to seeing what exciting new changes will happen in my life in 2009.
Who knows, maybe I’ll even find a vending machine that gives correct change.
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