Not what I was expecting…

I’ve been holding off on writing this one for a few weeks now. The Army works in mysterious ways and human resource types adhere to a time-table that they alone know. Last Friday, I was asked formally to accept an offer to be the #2 for Plans and Ops. My portfolio is said to include all emergencies in the US, its territories, and dependencies. The plans for how we respond to earthquakes, wildfires, and terrorist attacks will have my fingerprints all over them. In planning sessions with other agencies, I can speak for and commit the organization to courses of action without racing up the chain for approval. The technical description is Lead Civil Planner, but it’s de facto Deputy Chief, Plans and Ops. HR has the paperwork in the queue and I’m expecting the final word to come down before the end of the year.

It’s the job I moved here to chase. The title bump and pay raise are the goal that kept me focused through the post-Christmas move last year and the only slightly organized chaos of creating an organization out of a half dozen empty rooms. It’s why my desk at home is covered almost every weekend with briefing books and white papers.

This should be a moment of supreme satisfaction. The capstone event of a five year race. Hell, most federal employees cap out at a GS-10 or -11 after a 25 or 30 year career. Even if I were to kick back and rest on my notional laurels, the sheer weight of attrition will keep me on an upward glidepath… Not necessarily because I’m the best, but because I happen to be holding the right grade. The whole thing feels a little hollow, really. I spend my life being prepared for the eventualities, but I wasn’t prepared for that. How’s that for irony.

P.S. Yeah, I know I shouldn’t be bitching about this, so tomorrow morning, I’m gonna suck it up and drive on until I figure out what’s next.

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