No, not the living on the moon, Jetson's-type "future". My future. Our future.
I can honestly say that my personal future has never been as up in the air, left to chance (sorta), undecided as it is now. I find this to be both highly disturbing and oddly liberating.
See, I've always been the girl with the plan. In grade school I knew I wanted to go to college. I wanted to be a scientist. In high school, I knew where I wanted to go to college and what I wanted to major in. In college, despite the normal hiccups, I chose my degree and got it (even with a change) in 4 years. I wanted to get a job as a scientist. And here I am, 20+ years later doing just what I set out to do when I was a kid. I knew what I wanted and I made it happen. I was the girl with a plan. Now, don't get me wrong... of course there were brief interludes of "What now?" and "Crap. This isn't going as planned." and "Well, I didn't see that coming!". But all in all, I am a planner at heart and I generally know (and have known) what is on the horizon in my life.
Not anymore! All I know, for now, is that in a few "short" months I will be down at Fort X, trying to be a quasi-southerner, not get shot for being a liberal in maybe the most conservative state in the union and being a housewife for about a year. All of which I am very, very excited for. But after that? After Swiss retires? ... ... crickets ... ... I have NO idea what I am going to do. None. Zip, zero, zilch. These few years being an Army wife/gf have certainly taught me about letting go (sorta) of planning, preparing and laying out life in specifics. They've sort of broken me of that trait. But also, I know a life post-Army is coming up soon. And for that? I'm gonna need to plan.
But plan what? A career? Pick a new one or stick with the old? Go back to school or just find any old job that fits? And of course all of that hinges (rightfully so) on where Swiss can get a job. And before you go telling me that my career and I should have just as much say in where we end up as his... trust me... we've talked about it and given the circumstances, his skills/job prospects, my degrees & job prospects... our plan of attack makes the most sense. And of course I will have a great deal of say in where we end up. This girl isn't meek or mild and has no trouble speaking her mind! But like I said, where do I (we) go from here?
I guess what I'm wondering is this: How do you go about choosing a new career path? How do you figure out what road to take when you've been on the same one for 6 years? How do you gather up the gumption to take risks when you are 30+ and have more than just yourself to worry about and consider? How do you make smart choices yet still follow your dreams (gaw, that sounded hokey!)? And how, in this horrible market/economy/blah, do you start over in a way that won't leave you financially unstable?