Friday, February 11, 2011

Anchors Away!

Well it seems I am not just a military wife anymore; I am also a military sister! My little brother was just sworn in to the Navy, and will start boot camp in a few months! He has been talking about this or years, and even though his interest appeared to wane while he was in college, when college courses didn't work out for him, the Navy was his first choice job. I'll admit that part of me is very proud of him while another part is surprised and worried. The pride comes from what I have already experienced with military training and deployments. I know they will make him into a stronger, better, more disciplined man. And that is what he wants right now.

But the worry comes from my own experiences too. I know how painfully frustrating and heartbreaking it is to know that a loved one is in battle. You can watch the news on TV, but you don't get any real news from them for weeks or sometimes months at a time. It is hard enough praying, supporting, and worrying over a husband. I don't know what I would do if they were both deployed at the same time! Hopefully, that won't be a problem in the next year or so. I feel for his young girlfriend, because I know the challenging journey that is ahead of her. I was with my boyfriend/fiance/husband every step of the way, from the day he announced he wanted to join the Marines, to bootcamp graduation, and all 4 deployments. I still haven't met her, though they have been dating for a while, so I hope that their love and friendship can get them through his upcoming challenges.

And finally, I have to confess there is just a little bit of surprise. Even though my brother has talked about the military for years, I don't think we quite took him seriously until recently. Our father didn't have any military experience besides ROTC, and even though our grandfather was in the Army Corps of Engineers, he never talked about his military experience much either. So it's not like we had big military role models growing up. It was expected that we would go to college and find careers that way. But my brother's story didn't unfold as predicted, so now the military really is his best option. I think in his case, it will give him the guidance, discipline, and direction that he needs in his life right now. They will pay for him to complete his degree, and give him some very interesting experiences. So I'm happy for him, and I'm proud of him. But I am going to have to start saying more prayers...

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