I've been looking at jobs and houses in Virginia for what feels like months and months on the Internet. I'd put my resume in at a few hospitals and Eric had been house hunting with a realtor but we decided that I just needed to make my to DC for interviews and so I could help with the house part. I set up three interviews, which I was extremely nervous for since I've been out of the ICU for nearly 6 years and I'm guessing my skills are not at optimum. So I'd been studying all things intensive care related. To say the least, I was mega stressed out plus my nursing students had just started clinicals which meant early mornings for me and Van and a whole lot more kid coordination on my part.
Thankfully, my mom had convinced me to go to DC all by myself. She volunteered to take a few days off of work to take care of the boys What a treat, I couldn't remember the last time that I flew with no kids. That meant, I could have carry-on all for myself! A book, with out pictures! A purse, not filled to the brim with travel snacks, diapers, wipes and various other keep em busy items. I could sit there and read, I could go to sleep during flight if I so desired...
As luck would have it the day I flew out, Denver happened to be experiencing a pretty good snow storm. Several flights were cancelled or delayed. My flight getting out of Billings was delayed by a few hours which meant I missed all flights going to DC for the night. I ended up taking a red-eye to Houston, as the first flight into DC was from there, got in there around 1:30 in the morning. It seemed pointless to get a hotel for only a few hours so I ended up sleeping on the floor in a corner then got ready in the public restroom a mere few hours later. Thankfully I think I slept most of the flight to DC.
Unfortunately my first interview was scheduled for 10:30 am and my flight was scheduled to arrive in DC at 11:30. I wrote the recruiter a few emails letting her know what was going on, praying she would be understanding an be able to reschedule. Turns out she was and she did!
I arrived in DC to what felt like a sauna, it was in the mid 80's, I just came from Montana where it had been in the 20's. I immediately became a sweaty mess. I took the shuttle to the hotel Eric's been staying at, grabbed the car keys and headed to the hospital. My first interview was with the Trauma ICU. I was most excited about this one, it's a level 1 trauma center which means everything goes there. My second interview was with the Cardiovascular ICU which made me the most nervous, they do a lot of open hearts and heart/lung transplants. I thought the interviews both went well but coming out of them I felt more comfortable and more excited about the trauma unit.
I had one other interview at a smaller hospital. The ICU was older, cramped and very cluttered. I didn't feel the instant connection with the nurses there that I had in the trauma ICU. The only bonus about this hospital was that it was much closer to where we were looking at buying a home.
The next few days were filled with looking at lots and lots of houses mostly townhouses. The market in the DC area is pretty tight and very expensive! The homes that we really liked were getting multiple offers within 24 hours of being on the market :( We didn't want to get into any bidding wars. Thankfully one of Eric's co-workers was selling a townhouse that wasn't on the market yet which we both liked. So after much searching we went with that one and is currently in the process of buying it. We were also able to get together with friends in the evenings that we'd met at our various posts overseas.
It was nice to spend time with my husband and not constantly be chasing the kids. We were able to get a lot done and have quiet dinners. By the end of the week I'd heard back from hospital number 1 with the good news of the trauma ICU being interested in me! Yay!
With the house and job now taken care of my stress level dropped considerably. I'm able to now focus on daycare/preschool for Van which I found one willing to work with my unpredictable nurses schedule. Also found a few dojo's for Keenan's taekwondo that have after-school programs so that takes care of "how" he'll get to class. Keenan's new school will be 3 miles from our house verses the 20 miles he currently has.
So everything feels like it's falling into place. We have a few weeks left here squatting at my parents house then we're off. I'm sad for the boys as they've both really enjoyed getting to know their Montana family. Keenan is constantly with his cousins and Van seems to really have come out of his shell. Van now wants to go with everybody, in fact he's quite mad if Grampa or whomever doesn't take him with them. He's been known to chase after their cars or the 4-wheeler down the driveway. My baby is growing up, he wants to be included now!
Having said all of that, I'm very ready to be in my own home as a complete family, it's been nearly 8 months since we evacuated out of Tunisia. Keenan has already asked "where are we moving after Virginia?" I guess its only natural as he's been a global nomad. The kid turns 6 in July and has lived in 6 different places (Colorado, Montana, Virginia, Ukraine, Slovenia and Tunisia) in a few weeks we will be on move number 7- back to Virginia... that's a lot of packing and unpacking. I'm excited to see our stuff, my shoes more specifically. Keenan is excited to find his toys and books. We're hoping that this move will be at least for a few years maybe longer, who knows? When we decided to embark on this adventure we always said we'd take it one tour at a time. We may be perfectly content in Virginia, until the next bid list comes out with possibilities of exciting foreign locations...