I was talking with a friend the other day about my medical clearance to go to Italy. You have to go before a review board, who looks over all your paperwork and deems you okay to live abroad, and then they send it to your receiving base (in our case Aviano) for their approval. They ask you everything about your medical history, mental and physical, and you have to go in to see your primary doctor who fills the sheets out that you take to the review board. So at that appointment I told my doctor that I saw a counselor when we lived in Florida. It was right after we got married and I was having issues adjusting to military life and giving up so much control of my own life. I went to see this social worker on base 4-5 times just to talk about things. She never diagnosed me with anything and I was never on any meds. (Not that that’s at all a bad thing, I know many people who are, and I see nothing wrong with it. It’s just relevant to this story.) So the doctor had to put on my sheet that I’ve seen someone in the mental health field within the past five years.
I’ve been freaked out about that being on my clearance papers because I’m afraid they’re going to deny my medical clearance for Italy. I was talking to my friend about it and she was shocked that I ever had anxiety problems. She was like “You’re so calm and you just seem to go with the flow for everything. I can’t believe that you were having problems adjusting.” HAHA! For those of you that know me, you probably laughed reading that, just like I did hearing it, but it was still nice to hear. Maybe I’m not such a loony bin after all.
Although, if I was a bit loony now, I’d have good reason. We were told at that medical clearance review that Aviano had up to 2 weeks to get back to us with whether or not Abbie and I are cleared to go over there. We cannot get orders to Aviano or set up any of the move without that clearance. So if we don’t get that back for another week and a half yet, that’s going to put us at a week before we want to be packing up before the review is back. Who knows how long it takes to get orders after the review is done…
And while I’m on the subject of things stressing me out, there’s still no guarantee that Abbie and my’s passports and visas will be back in time for us to leave when we want to. If we go over without them, we a. run the risk of being deported and b. have to come back to the States to get them anyway and re-enter Italy. This poses quite a few problems.
- We already have reservations on the military rotator from BWI to Aviano for March 9. March 9th was the ONLY time in the entire month of March that they had pet space available on the rotator.
- We already have reservations for our flight from LA to BWI, with reservations for the dogs to be in cabin with us.
- It’s too cold for the dogs to travel in cargo because it’s colder than 45 in Baltimore (BWI).
- If Mark has to fly over ahead of us, he cannot fly with 2 dogs in cabin by himself. They only allow one dog per passenger in cabin.
- I REALLY don’t want to have to fly with Abbie by myself across the country and then over the Atlantic. Plus I don’t know how I’d carry all of our junk and her and her car seat by myself. Even if I did wear her it’d be really hard for me to haul 3 suitcases, 1-2 carry on’s, her car seat and her by myself.
- And I REALLY, REALLY don’t want to have to travel with Abbie and one of the dogs by myself. I’m not even sure we could get them a spot on a commercial flight this late in the game. Those usually book up weeks in advance.
So in other words, if y’all could spare a prayer or two that our plan miraculously falls into place, that would be greatly appreciated. =)