So I went back to MEPS today to finalize my enlistment paperwork. Yay! So I have good news and bad news.
The good news: I got sworn in and I’m officially in DEP (delayed enlistment program).
The bad news: my ship out date is not until May 23, 2011. WTF?!!
When the guy there told me this I thought he was joking. In fact, I kept expecting him to say, “nahhh! just kidding your shipping out in October”, but he never did. I couldn’t believe it. At one point, there were about twelve people (including several higher ups) fighting for me to get an earlier date, but to no avail. I asked, why? I was so confused because the Navy Music people had told me that they have spots every month reserved for musicians, and they gave me the impression that it would be no more than a couple months before I got to ship out. And plus, I had never heard of musician in the military having to wait that long (unless they wanted to).
Are there really that many MUs? No, there is not, actually. Here is why I can’t ship out until May: Apparently, the admiral who is in charge of everything has decided (due to budget constraints) that NOBODY will be shipping out anymore from October through December. The first slot available to MU’s is in February and they are all filled up, and the next available date is May 23.
Luckily, if a musician drops out that is shipping out in February, I will most likely get their spot. But unfortunately that is not likely to happen. I actually cried in the Navy processing office…not proud of that. Aren’t I supposed to be tough or something to be in the military? Ha. I actually considered not signing my contract. But luckily the recruiter (never met him before this morning) that drove me to the station was really supportive and he got me to remember why I was enlisting. I also made a quick call to my sister who made me feel more at ease about the whole thing.
So now Ben and I have to figure out what we’re going to do – he was wanting to move to CA in the next few months (while I was at boot camp), but obviously things have changed a little bit so we’ll see what we decide.
I’ve accepted the fact that it may be 8 months before I leave – I have to because there’s nothing I can do, and nothing that anyone can do. I just have adapt to the new situation. The good thing about this is that now I have plenty of time to prepare a recital!