DoD photo by Lt. Cmdr. Jim Remington

Military families face many unique challenges and experiences, not least of which is having to move every few years. A military move is officially called a permanent change of station, colloquially called a “PCS.”  

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Yu Nakajima/Kyodo News via AP

“That cannot be right,” I thought after googling the command and realizing my husband’s new orders were to Okinawa, Japan. He was deployed at the time, and moving to Japan was the last thing I expected. It was true. Five months later, we arrived at our new subtropical island home, bleary-eyed and curious about our upcoming experiences in the three years to come.

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U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kyle Gese

Deployments are a fact of life for most military families. While each one is uniquely challenging and no two deployments are the same, some experiences are universal. Here are some of my deployment observations that I am confident my fellow military spouses understand.

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