When my husband joined the Army, I thought it would be amazing to be able to live overseas. And then he got orders to Germany.
He flew over first, and my son and I joined him around four months later to start our first military and overseas experience. Four years later, we traveled back to the US, with another baby, and tons of memories behind us.
When I think back to those years, I think about all the things I learned during our time in Germany. If you are getting ready to be stationed there, you are in for a treat!
Here are a few things you should keep in mind while living overseas in Germany.
One of my biggest mistakes was to not try to learn German before I got over there. I wish I had. While you can get by with only knowing English, knowing the language would be a much easier experience for you. I was able to pick up on some words and phrases, which was super helpful.
See the Castles
It’s the weekend? Go see a castle. No really, go. When you are in Germany, there will be plenty of castles and other villages, towns, and other places to explore. You will miss them when you get back to the states. Have a day trip and see what is out there. Germany is magical.
Shop on the economy
While having access to the Commissary is amazing, and where I did most of my shopping, I also liked to shop on the economy. From fruits and veggies to furniture, Germany has a lot to offer. And when you shop in your local town, you get to know the people who live there. Shopping on the economy will enhance your experience overseas. Make sure to do it.
Ask people to visit
Ask your friends and family to visit. Let them know what an experience this will be for them, and for you. Time will pass and you will be back in the US before you know it, so make sure your family makes plans to visit you when they can. (Being 2020 I know this isn’t possible right now but hopefully it will not be this way in the future.)
There is something so special about the military community overseas. Something you can’t find as easily as in the US. Embrace that. Make friends with your neighbors and find your people. You will be able to make memories together, from sharing your Thanksgiving traditions to long summer nights at the park as the kids play.
Being stationed overseas is quite an experience. You will be able to do so many amazing things, and your memories will stay with you for the rest of your life. Enjoy your time, take lots of photos, and breathe it all in.