November 3, 2011

This Weekend

The first sergeant sat behind in desk, looking alarmingly relaxed in his grey sweatsuit. He leaned back in the leather swivel chair, telling Sky he'd be approved for new uniforms, then recalled his own thinner days with wistful eyes. His office displayed a few model airplanes and a helmet in ACU fabric. Millie sat on my lap, pointing at the sad, fake flowers squished into vases.

We met with him on Monday. He answered all my questions, giving me assurances of Sky's safety and his unlikeliness of deployment for at least a couple years. (He had apparently forgotten that I had been an infantry soldier's spouse and sister). I pretended to go along with the story he spun, and assured him that I was on board with the decision to join the Reserves- I just wanted details on the school Sky would be attending.

He called in another soldier dressed in camo, who explained to me, in a thick, Alabama accent, what schooling would entail. He mentioned two options- the active Army school in Georgia, where Sky would spend at least half a year attending, or some sort of Reserves school that would keep him away for only a few weeks. He explained how much nicer the Reserves school could be, since we'd see each other so much.

And this is where I bit my lip.

When we first began talking about the possibility of a long AIT, I had lots of conflicting thoughts. There were two big thoughts though-I'll elaborate on the second one down the road, if/when this all becomes reality- but the first one was, "No more debt." School means paying off the two debts we have, which would free up a lot of income as well as give us so much more peace of mind about the future. I can't begin to tell you how happy I'd be if it were gone. It would be life altering for us.

We shut the car doors, Sky turned the key, and we began talking about the options. And though part of my heart felt crazy, I told him I thought he should go. That he should do the 6 or 7 months of school states away from here. I told him, if he was going to be gone, I'd rather him make the money sitting in a classroom where I wouldn't have to worry about him every day like a deployment. (And yes, I know that would be down the road.) More than likely, I wouldn't move there during his schooling, but maybe that's the sacrifice we make to have a brighter future.

He goes in this weekend to speak to the unit command. They will ask him about his PT test, and if they officially approve him, he'll sign all the paperwork that day. He'll walk in a veteran, and walk out a soldier again. He'll be back in his uniform, attach new patches on his velcro, and be drilling. And once he passes his PT, he'll be approved to start school.

I'm nervous about this weekend, of course. Nervous that they won't approve him for whatever reason. Nervous that they will, and life will change a little. But for a long time, it had felt to me like God had forgotten this family (I know he hadn't, but feelings are feelings.) Finally, this feels like we could get back on track- towards a lot of dreams and goals, towards a better job for Sky in the future, and, of course, towards seeing that boy in his boots again.

16 kind comments from you:

Ashley said...

I love all your intricate details! It makes me feel anxious with you! I always support my hubby in his longer times away because I know he most likely wants to go for better training, some extra cash and experience! I know you've been through this before but good luck!!

Melissa Jaine said...

I think we all know that feeling that God has forgotten us. But it reminds me of something I heard on Oprah once :) ... "Things don't always happen when we want them to, but God is always on time."
mj.x

Skinnie Piggie said...

I totally get you on the "God forgetting us" thing... I'm glad for the new job opportunity for Sky and I will definitely be praying for the decision to move there with him or to stay where you are.

Kaylee said...

I'll be praying for you guys this week and weekend. I can relate to you, in making big, hard decisions that are best for your family as a whole, rather than just what feels easy and happy at the moment - I know that God will work all things out for good, for your family.

Mama McD said...

Congrats! I hope it all works out the way you want. My husband is in BCT right now and we're looking at a minimum of 5 months, maximum 10(ish) months apart but we know the sacrifices (on both sides) will absolutely be worth it.

The New "Normal" said...

I know the feeling of wanting them near by, but also knowing that financially it will help the family. It seems almost wrong to want them to go, but if it's the best for a better future, it's a sacrifice worth making. The pay from this deployment has helped us tremendously, but I hate to think what he had to endure for us to all be better off. You guys know what is best for your family and God will direct you. Sometimes He's silent until the right answer comes along, but He won't forget you :) I'll be keeping your family in my prayers this weekend for all to go as you hope!

Jennifer @ Also Known As...the Wife said...

I really hope the plan comes together. I think this small sacrifice now will pave way for a more comfortable and secure life down the road. And welcome to the Reserves family! It'll be nice to "know" someone who knows what it's like to the tow the line between civilian and military life.

Good luck!

Mrs.B said...

I know exactly how you feel. After Mike got out of the Marines and everything was just going horribly wrong I felt God had forgotten us as well. Then the Coast Guard came about and I was a nervous wreck and now in 2 weeks he signs his contract. Praying for the best possible out come for you guys. Good Luck!

Chantal said...

I hope it works out how you want it to. I can understand wanting to send him to school to get that money instead of deployment. We've been in a similar position!

Ashley said...

I will pray that God will continue to provide for you and Sky. I know that He will lead you to the right decision for your family, no matter which school you decide to choose. I will pray that things continue to be in your favor and that you guys can finally start reaching towards your dreams and goals again.

JennyTheBeatBoxer said...

Hooray! :) Since there isn't a "like" button, that's all I know to say. :)

Melissa said...

Yay!!! I think you guys are making a smart decision, yeah being apart is going to be hard, but like you said if it will help you with debts and securing a future it will be well worth it. I pray that this week he signs the papers, and btw you have always been a milspouse to me! :)

Mrs. H said...

I feel like I just read a chapter in some amazing novel.
Why are you SUCH an amazing writer???

I definitely know how you feel with your decision though. What keeps me at ease during this deployment is that, although we didn't have a choice, the amount of money he'll be making will be setting us up for for a great future.

Keeping you in my prayers and hoping that everything falls into place as it should. :)

vintch said...

praying that this weekend brings you peace and a calm. this is a difficult decision, as most big ones are. but your love will carry you, and it will ultimately be what helps you decide. that, and a blissful assurance from our Heavenly Father.

p.s. want one way to supplement your income? um, write a book, lady! this prose is stunning:)

beka said...

one of my favorite parts: "Millie sat on my lap, pointing at the sad, fake flowers squished into vases."

and "seeing that boy in his boots again."

i love your prose.
seriously, lady.

____j said...

I'm so glad that things are looking up for you!

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