The Space Between: Navigating the Months Between Getting Orders and Your PCS

woman sitting on a couch looking at watch and waiting

If you’ve been living this military life long enough to have made your first move, you know all about this “space” that I am referring to in my title.

I remember when we first got our orders to Ohio. We were given a little less than six months to make the move from Florida. In my experience, what I thought was a short amount of time ended up feeling like it just dragged on (and on and on and on). This in-between time frame was a season that I won’t ever forget, and I am curious if it was the same for you all.

chalkboard with "we're moving! new year, new home, new adventure" written on it

We received our orders in late October and were set to move on the first of April. No, it was not an April Fools joke, though many of our friends thought that when we shared we were moving. When my husband came home and gave me these dates, the planner in me immediately starting mapping out our timeline.

SO much goes into a PCS, especially when you own a home in your current location. Then add in kids and pets, and well, it’s just a lot!

Somehow, in the span of less than six months, we needed to:

  • list and sell our current home
  • pack up all of our belongings
  • research our new area
  • plan a house-hunting trip to Ohio and secure a home while we were there

Oh, and because we chose to do a DITY move, we had to plan out all of those details as well. WHEW! My brain was mush just thinking about it.

To my surprise, all of the “big” details worked themselves out. We were able to (thankfully) sell our Florida home pretty quickly, bought our new house in February, and nailed down all of the DITY move details without our hair turning grey. But now what? I remember actually asking myself this question, on more than one occasion.

So, here we were, still two whole months out from making the actual move with everything basically done.

Now I know this may not always be the case, but for us, this last time, it was. This space between was incredibly hard to navigate through. My heart knew that I would soon be having to say goodbye to some of my favorite people, and I could feel myself preemptively pulling away some days and almost just going through the motions.

I knew that we would be moving. I was starting to get excited about the new house and exploring our new area. Yet at the same time, I was grieving the home and friends we were leaving behind in Florida. Some of my most precious memories were made there, and even still I found myself anxiously awaiting and almost counting down the days until this next new chapter would begin. It was almost as if I had two separate emotion tanks, and they were trying to compete with one another.

Eventually, that two-month countdown ended.

man and woman hugging goodbyeI said some of my toughest “see you laters” to date, cried about a third of the drive, and made it safely to Ohio. Those two months of time –  that space between and that incredibly difficult waiting period – will forever be etched in my brain. Not as good or bad, but just as another experience this military life has led me to have.

If you are currently living in the space between or the wait right now, you are not alone! I know myself and many many friends have made it through that same season as well. My best advice is to just soak each day up for what it is. Try not to live in the future, or the past.

Sit in the now, and embrace the time and the space between.

Previous articleMay Book Club: Such a Fun Age
Next articleUsing DailiesPods to Help My Kids Learn and Thrive
Rebecca Hurtley
Hey there, I'm Rebecca! I am a believer, proud military wife, and Mama of 4; 2 in Heaven and 2 here with us. I’m originally from Florida, but we moved to Ohio about three years ago and I honestly LOVE the change. Dayton was quick to feel like home to us, and we've definitely been enjoying the seasons! Being a Mom is the happiest full-time job, but I love making the time to keep up with my personal interests as well. I run a blog and Instagram @theivynest; where I share a bit of our story and everyday life, along with my love of home decor and keeping things simple. Life is definitely busy, but I truly believe that it is equally as beautiful when we choose to see it that way!