In the State Department we have letters that quickly describe an office and/ or position.
They are as follows:
Secretary of State (S)
Deputy Secretary (D)
Deputy Secretary for Management and Resources (DMR)
Counselor of the Department (C)
UNDER SECRETARY FOR:
Arms Control and International Security (T)
Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights (J)
Economic Growth, Energy, and Environment (E)
Political Affairs (P)
Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs (R)
And while coincidentally enough, I am a PD officer, this blog post is about the other R Department: Relationships!
Time and time again I see people asking about this in the Foreign Service.
If you think I’ve got some great advice or insight, you’re wrong. But I will tell you that if a spouse, house, job, and white picket fence are what you long for, the Foreign Service is the antithesis of that.
While I have yet to get overseas with the FS, I can tell you from my military time in Germany that the overseas lifestyle is a very exciting one, but one that is very hard on relationships. I will also tell you that the availability of ‘love on the run’ is very high while true love is not. Throw in career considerations for your spouse, and I promise a mess can quickly develop. Still there are many who successfully do it!
The struggle I have is that I want to be with a woman that makes me feel alive in a way only she could. A popular theory recently put together by Mark Manson is F Yes or No. I subscribe to it. Both in career and love. I am elated and humbled to be in the Foreign Service. I honestly think ‘F yeah’ to myself often these days. I cannot wait to get to Brazil. But I also have had to make some tough calls in the R Department lately.
I never imaged having a 9 to 5 with the same company, in the same locale for the entirety of my working life. Hello Foreign Service! Likewise, the white picket fence was probably never in the cards for me. So I hope to find someone with an equal appreciate for wanderlust and love. A tough combo, but still an achievable one in my mind.
Life goes on no matter casado (married) or solteiro (single). I’ll be living mine as I want. Should the right gal come along… great. If not, my life with continue to be enough for me. So… keep believing in your dreams… which always includes finding love, right?!
PS: Language self study just got a whole lot better! :-p