Thursday, May 15, 2014

Update: College Graduate (MedBoard: Joint Base Lewis-McChord)

Thought I’d write a little update now that it’s been a little over a month since my last post. I’m still technically in the army and enjoying the life that is terminal leave. I started my new job the day I went on terminal leave and it’s been great. I’m actually doing I.T. work once again, unlike my time in the army. I work for a great company full of some awesome people. The company actually makes a difference in the community as well. After this first month of working there, I know I made the right job choice and I see myself working here for a very long time.

One of my big goals when joining the army was to get my bachelor’s degree. I’m happy to say that as of today I am now a college graduate. My last two classes officially ended on May 6th, then they did an audit to make sure everything was in order before the graduation was official. It’s been a long long road to get to this point. A lot of hard work taking one class at a time and working on schoolwork most nights, but it is a really great feeling…and a large weight lifted off my shoulders. I’m feeling pretty darn accomplished…and happy. I’ll be taking a little while off before pursuing any more certifications or anything, it will be a welcome break.

As for army news…as I mentioned earlier, I’m extremely happy being on terminal leave…I really enjoy the freedom of being a civilian once again. I have a nice beard I’ve been working on since the first day of terminal leave. I’ve loved being able to wear whatever clothes I deem appropriate for weather conditions or how I feel. I also have been taking advantage of the nice weather and riding my motorcycle to work everyday…unlike the army I don’t need any special training or have special meetings with my boss, I just ride!

I did go on Ft. Lewis a couple weeks back and received my retired military ID card, but it turns out they messed something up. In DEERS (Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System) they still had my active duty status as November of 2015 and also forced in my retirement date of May 28th 2014…both cannot coexist. This has prevented me from being able to sign up for Tri-Care Prime for me and my family that is provided during retirement. Tri-Care still sees me as being active duty with no retirement date. Leave it to the army to screw things up. Since I’m closer to the naval bases here in the Bremerton area, I drove to the naval sub base near Silverdale and visited their DEERS office with my DD214 and orders in hand. They were able to remove my active duty status, but said I had to come back on the 28th of May in order for them to input my retirement status. This is a little bit of BS because right on the Tri-Care website it states that we can enroll up to 90 days before our retirement date as long as it’s in DEERS. I’m not going to get too stressed out about it. I’ll just take a break at some point during the 28th and make the short trip to their office again. I’m too happy to be out, finally have my degree, and have a great job for this stupid crap to get me down!

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