Sit back and relax... this is going to be a long one!
It's been a little over a week since we've been back from our trip to Hawaii. It was two weeks of awesomeness, lemme tell ya! And having Chuck pass his physical agility tests was just the cherry on the sundae. :)
For those of you who don't know, (although a lot of you reading this already do) Chuck has been in the application process for the City and County of Honolulu Fire Department. It's actually been his dream to live in Hawaii and work for the Fire Department there for a while now, even before we met. He actually lived there for a time in hopes of getting hired, but decided to come back to FL. Good thing he did, otherwise we may not have even met! But it was really strange and somewhat serendipitous that he met me, a girl who's been infatuated with Hawaii since, oh I don't know....forever?
Anyway, I digress... Back to the story. This testing process is pretty time consuming and costly since he's been having to fly back to HI for each phase. The first phase was a written test which he flew out to take in mid-August (I believe) of last year. They said candidates would be notified by mail whether they passed or not in about 6-8 weeks.
As many of you know, my father passed away suddenly in early October. About a week later, Chuck got his letter from Honolulu saying he passed his test. At first he said, "No, we can't move to Hawaii. You can't leave your mom and I can't leave you." In my head I actually thought: "But...but...no Hawaii?" We kind of left it at that for a while, while my family and I struggled to put the pieces of our lives back together.
But no matter how much we tried to deny it, there was still that lingering notion pulling us back to Hawaii. I was actually getting counseling at this time and I would always talk about how much we wanted to live there. Finally I decided to tell Chuck that we needed to see where this would take us. Otherwise, there would always be those "what ifs." At least we'll know for sure this time.
Talking to my mom about it helped too. She knows that we have to live our lives too. It's going to be really tough to leave her if we do end up out there. I just remember asking her if she would be okay with that and her response: "I'll just call you every day." (Our master plan, really, is to have EVERYONE move to HI with us! hehe...)
Then came a packet from Honolulu with the details of the physical agility test detailing the dates, times and locations for it. There are two parts of the physical: the CPAT (Candidate Physical Assessment Test, and obstacle course set-up) and a 100-meter swim & dive. Normally they combine it all in one day, but they broke it up this time. The CPAT one week then (pending you passing the CPAT), the swim & dive the following week. So when Chuck told me that we would need to be in Hawaii for two whole weeks (OMG!) I was ecstatic! Then I remembered, "Oh wait... My job only gives me a week's vacation every year." Crap.
I told my boss about this right before we left for Christmas break. He actually took the news a lot better than expected! I wouldn't get paid for the second week I was there, but that's alright and only fair. We would make due--WE WERE GOING TO HAWAII!!!
So fast forward to now. Chuck passed the CPAT AND the swim & dive. I'm so proud of him! All that training paid off! And now his name is on a hire list and depending on budgets and how many they decide to hire, they pull names off that list to conduct interviews. We've both been getting asked, "So when will you know?" and we both pretty much say, "Your guess is as good as mine!"
I know that God has great things in store for our future and all I know is that if He has Hawaii planned for us, then He's going to make it happen. We'll all just have to wait and see.