Hello. Recently, my wife and I decided that I should pursue my dream of serving in the military. I will graduate with my ASN this month and plan to obtain my BSN by 2014. I have been looking at different branches of the military and have narrowed it down to the Air Force and the Navy. I am really interested in joining the reserves in the Nurse Corps of either branch. Does anyone have any experiences in either Air Force or Navy Reserves? I was almost sure I wanted to join the Navy because of its history and my uncle served as a Sailor but lately, I have been hearing people tell me to look into the Air Force. What is the difference between the two? Is it harder to get in either? I was under the impression that the requirements, both physically and mentally, are the same. Also, what typically has shorter deployments? I have a four year old son and do not want to be away for too long but I understand the length of deployments all depend on the needs of the military. What are examples of deployments for Nurse Corps Reservists? Do you serve in a hospital, on a ship, base, or combat zone? How long are the contracts to serve in either branch for reservists? I know I can talk to a recruiter about these questions but I love this site because it gives the reader first hand testimonials and sometimes recruiters don't always tell you everything. Thank you all in advance for the help!
Sep 11, '12
I was a Navy wife for 15 years and loved it for the most part. However, as far as families are concerned, the Air Force does it better. They usually have nicer bases and better housing.
Sep 19, '12
Thank you for the quick response, Dalla. May I ask that you give examples of what you did like about being a Navy wife and what about the Air Force bases and housing was better? Did you and your family move around a lot? Was/Is he a Navy Nurse? I am looking into the reserves but active duty is still an option that I'm not totally disregarding. Thank you in advance!
Sep 19, '12
My ex was a Navy Intelligence officer for 20 years and we moved around every 3-5 years. We were around AF and Army and Navy bases. My ex always joked that the Air Force would spend all their budgeted money on military housing and the support buildings like shopping, restaurants, hospital, etc., then have to ask for more money to buy their airplanes. It always did seem like AF housing looked better than Army and Navy housing. Bigger, newer, more well-kept, landscaping, etc. He retired as an O4 and was making about $100,000 a year with a CA housing allowance. My 15-year share of his retirement is about $1,200 and pays my mortgage plus in Wisconsin. I enjoyed moving around and finding new housing and decorating every few years. Can't believe I have been "back home" for 8 years now in the same area. I admit, I have the "itch" to move. He was in the first Iraq War - Dessert Storm and was in an airplane on 9/11, but I never really feared for his safety since he was a computer geek. We were separated for 9 months during Dessert Storm and lots of times for 2-3 months while he was attached to the carrier. When he was assigned to a base, he often flew to business conferences for a week or so at a time. And when he was with the NAOC plane, he would sometimes be gone for a couple of weeks or so. I ran the household, kids, and finances. Always complained about the waiting times at the military health care clinics, but now that I have NO health insurance at all, I miss it! I enjoyed the military life and miss it.
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