Rediscovering a Little Light of Joy


Rediscovering a Little Light of JoyFor many military families, PCSing (Permanent Change of Station) can be stressful. Often times you are packing up your entire house and having it shipped across the country and sometimes across the ocean. Many times, it is hard to find joy around you when your life is literally reduced to boxes.

When I start feeling like this, I remind myself of what those boxes hold, like that comfy bed that I so want to sleep on instead of the military-issued furniture, or a certain photo of my husband and me being goofy in our younger years.

Even though I don’t love every minute of moving with the military, there are some times when the move brings me a little happiness.

A few years ago, my husband and I were getting ready for the PCS to Germany. I was told that many of our electronics could be damaged if they didn’t have duel voltage (110/220). Not wanting to risk our appliances, lamps, and the vacuum cleaner, I decided to leave them in long-term storage while we lived in Germany.

This past summer, we returned stateside and moved into our current rental house where I quickly realized that it desperately needed extra lighting to brighten up the joint. We then started the process of getting our items out of storage. After a few months, my husband finally informed me that the long-term storage items had a scheduled delivery date.

I know this next statement may make me sound like Brick from Anchorman, but I love lamps. Don’t ask me why, but I love using lamps instead of overhead lights.  I had lived in Germany for three years, making do with inexpensive IKEA substitutes, and had been without my beloved American lamps for a long time.   

While waiting for the delivery truck to arrive, I kept looking out the window like a little kid waiting for the ice cream truck to appear. I was eager to plug in my long-awaited lamps to brighten up my new home. Finally, the truck arrived.

After going through the delivered items, I found the boxes marked lamps and opened them up to inspect them. Thankfully, they were in good order. I quickly screwed in a few light bulbs and strategically placed the lamps in the areas that needed them the most.

With just a turn of the nobs, the lamps started to glow throughout the room, making me feel like my new house had finally become my home. It’s amazing how a little light from some long-lost lamps can bring me such joy.

Even though it is sometimes difficult to find the joy in a PCS, what is one thing that you look forward to when you move with the military?