My family has served in the U.S. Military for three generations, starting with my grandfather, followed by uncles and cousins. When I met my now-husband five years ago I was not interested in these West Point boys that were going to be at the party in my friend’s NYU dorm room. In fact I only planned on staying for five minutes, be polite and say hi to these guys we had briefly met the year before, but then there was James, who was a freshman, therefore new to the group. I will admit that his blue eyes and smile drew me in immediately and before I knew it five minutes turned into hours of talking, laughing, and flirting. The next day we had our first date and almost four years later we were married.
As of our wedding day my status according to the Department of Defense is “dependent,” to my Army Officer husband, but I consider myself more than that, I am his partner, best friend, hand to hold, and biggest cheerleader. I am a spouse. But my life involves moving where the Army tells him to go, not where I want my job to be, and while I fully embrace this future, I can still see the skeptical faces of my New York City co-worker that read “You’re leaving NYC?” Yes I left New York, which had become home. And as I did, I embraced my new life, but found that both old friends and new co-workers decided that everything military related was all that mattered to me. My role as a “military spouse” was my identity. And while it is part of it, and I embrace it fully, that is not the full me. So who am I?
I grew up in Phoenix. During school I was either studying, doing something student government related, writing and editing the school newspaper, dancing, playing tennis, volunteering, etc. (I admit: I was a bit of an overachiever.) I discovered NYU while wandering the village with my dad on a brutally cold winter day and was determined to study there. My parents took me on a ton of campus tours, just to make sure, but I applied early decision to NYU and got in. Done. While in college I double majored in journalism and history. I added an Italian minor after falling in love with the language, history and culture during my required language classes. I spent 10 weeks abroad, 8 of those at NYU in Florence. I can’t wait to go back to Italy.
While at NYU I interned at some great magazines and fell in love with working on their websites. I tried TV and print but there was nothing like the immediacy of the web. During my five years in New York I started blogging about my food and travel adventures (you can read it here). I also started to appreciate and admire fashion (I describe my style as classic with some trends thrown in). I love shoes, and own way more than I actually wear (I used to work at a shoe store). I aspire to be craftier and not kill potted plants. I love aquariums and marine animals, at one point I wanted to be a marine biologist (see photo above with elephant seals in California). I watch far too many TV shows for my own good. (My current obsession is Downton Abbey, I almost pre-ordered Season 3.)
I am re-figuring out what I want my career to be, but maybe I wasn’t sure where it was taking me anyway. I’m a graduate student and volunteer. I just learned to drive stick shift and love viral videos. I am completely addicted to Pinterest, seriously, check out my boards. And while the road is undefined, I love where my life is going. And I have the best husband in the world, who is my biggest fan, believes in everything I do, wants nothing more than me to succeed and to make me laugh. And he succeeds at that; not a day goes by that he doesn’t put a smile on my face, even when we’re apart.
So that’s my story. What’s yours?