On the Eve of My 37th Birthday

In the past, I have written something in “celebration” of my birthday. Looking back now, I thought it was something that I had done more often, but alas, it was only like three years total: 2009 was a brief post from Fort Dix, NJ while we were getting ready to deploy to Iraq; 2012 was a reflection on that year on a month-to-month basis; last year, I made a list of “36 Things Learned in 36 Years,” so the history is not nearly as robust as I thought.

Nevertheless, I want to reflect on this past year, and maybe look forward to the next one. I am kind of loathe to write “resolution” posts – though I have done it before [20092011a; 2011b; 2013 (part 3 of 3 with links to the other parts); 2014; and 2015]. This doesn’t mean that there aren’t things that I want to change or improve in the next year, but I’d rather just tell everyone on my birthday next year that I was successful in the secret goals for 2018.

On a personal level, this year was pretty great. Kim is still an amazing person and the best thing to have ever happened to me. Lincoln continues to be the second best thing to have ever happened to me, and I really enjoy my little family. We also decided this year that Lincoln will be an only child, an easy decision considering all the issues he had coming into the world and our advancing ages, we simply decided to focus on giving Lincoln all the opportunities that we can. Kim is an only child and she turned out great, so we have the same hope for Lincoln. I feel like he is already ahead in some areas of his development, and I look forward to his continuing growth in the year ahead.

Professionally, I am still working as a Palace Acquire intern with the Air Force with about 18 months left before they provide me with a permanent position. However, due to my previous government employment, I’m hoping to find a permanent position of my choosing prior to the end of my internship instead of being placed somewhere that might not be as ideal for my long-term career goals.

As it stands now, I am planning on working for the Air Force (or elsewhere in the government) for at least another 10 years to qualify for a decent retirement, and then we’ll see what happens. In the short-term, I get another promotion in July and will spend three weeks at another base (most likely Mountain Home AFB in Idaho) as part of an Operational Training Assignment and continue to work towards becoming a logistician – though I still hold out hope that I will eventually end up working in finance to match my educational background.

In other areas, 2017 has been very trying for a lot of people in this country, and it appears that our Republican-lead legislature is going out with a bang, passing an atrocious “tax reform” bill that will have far reaching consequences for a lot of average Americans, consequences that might not be felt for a long time. Meanwhile, our president continues to do nothing but inflame the world, both “enemies” and allies alike. We are probably closer to nuclear war than we have been since the Cuban Missile Crisis, and peace between Palestine and Israel may be further away as well because of the ill-advised move of our embassy to Jerusalem (from Tel Aviv).

That said, with as horrible as the political year has been, there has been some light. Democrats just won a Senate seat in Alabama for the first time in over 20 years. Virginia Democrats shifted the House of Delegates to a 50/50 split by one vote. And the GOP “plan” in DC seems to have shifted the national sentiment a lot back towards Democrats in a generic ballot leading up to the mid-term elections next November. So as horrible as 2017 has been, the presidency of Donald Trump and the ineptness of the current GOP might have far-reaching consequences in years to come as well, though the Democrats might simply spend the next X years just trying to get the government back to normal.

We all get older. We all go through life trying to survive and find our place in the world. Sometimes that journey is rough, but whatever doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. Journeys are easier if you have like-minded people along for the ride too, and Kim is my partner forever in this crazy thing that we call life. I know that we will end 2018 on better terms than we entered it. If not, we’ll try again in 2019. But we’ll do it together.

Until next time…

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