Sunday, July 6, 2008

Reenlisting on the 4th of July

Friday was a special day for our family. Not only was it a national holiday, but also it was the day we officially decided to devote another six years of our lives to the Navy. Being the patriotic people we are, we decided that what better day to reenlist in the Navy than the day our country declared its independence from England, the day we consider our Nation’s birthday.

Justin enlisted in the Navy while we were still in high school. We actually decided to get married and join the Navy all in the same week in October 1997. He enrolled in the Delayed Enlistment Program (DEP), with an enlistment date in September 1998. We were intent on getting married on the 23rd of a month, and the only months with a 23rd on a Saturday that coming year were August 1998 and January 1999. Several family members felt that August was too soon after high school to be getting married, so we went with January and adjusted Justin’s enlistment date to July 7, 1998.

Today, we have officially completed ten years of Naval service. We are eligible for retirement after 20 years of service in the military. Friday’s reenlistment was a big decision for our family. Reenlisting for six years puts us within reach of retirement, in essence sealing our fate for the additional four years.

Many military members will tell you that the ten-year mark is a time for major decisions. You are halfway to do you stay in and work towards retirement, or do you go your separate way.

We have decided to stay.

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