Wednesday, September 28, 2011

My son is a SAILOR!

At last! 
We leave for Chicago in the morning!
I am so proud of my sweet Sailor son! 
Millions of photos and details
to come. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

the power of a smile

The shortest distance between two people is a smile.  
~Author Unknown

My sweet son is in his last days at RTC . He graduates  next week! 
His division's finals days will be filled with challenges~
final PFAs, inspections, drills, Captain's Cup
We received a short phone call on Monday~ a reward for a perfect
score on an inspection. My son sounded great, a bit weary, 
but upbeat and ready to wrap this thing up! 
On Tuesday, we got the best gift ever! 
 has two contests weekly. One of our division moms 
WON Tuesday's trivia game (no small feat, as there
 are MANY parents, spouses, etc playing). 
So, with no further ado~ I  present 
Ship 7 USS CHICAGO Division 327
83 strong and lookin' good in their NWUs!!! 
 A photo from boot camp is a treasure!!! Winning the contest
is the only way to get a photo from boot camp.
It is just amazing to have this peek 
at the division! And best of all... look at those GRINS!!!!
They were told what the photo was for! They know their moms,
 dads, wives, girlfriends, etc will
see this photo. I love their beautiful smiles!
This photograph is a treasure. 

And where is my SR?
He is on the very top of the heap~ top upper right,
CLIMBING (oh, how he loves to climb) on something
and rocking the best smile ever!!
That's my boy! 
Note his collar device~ He is a Recruit Petty Office.
That smile is a beautiful sight.
See you soon, son! 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

almost there...

It is rather surreal to think that in 2 weeks and 2 days 
we will be Great Lakes bound!
My son graduates from boot camp on 9/30/11~ the last group
to graduate in dress whites until next spring.
My son is in a push division which means his time 
in boot camp is 7 weeks, not the more standard 8 weeks.
So, we will see him soon! 

The past 5 weeks has, at times, seemed endless.
Our contact with our son has been minimal...
the form letter, the 'kid in a box", 3 real letters
and ONE and only ONE PHONE call (2 weeks ago).
That is not much, but it does get you through. 
I am also part of a FaceBook group for his division 
and that is a great resource. I have made some wonderful
new friends. The Navy community is pretty amazing!
By sharing info from our letters
and calls, we can piece together a pretty good glimpse 
of how things are going. All of the communication
from my son has been positive. 
He says that being in leadership is one
of the best things about his boot camp experience.

Many in the division have been ill, which is typical.
I assume it is a combination of bringing lots of people together 
from all over the country, mental and physical stress
and extreme fatigue that makes the recruits vulnerable
to the "Ricky Crud" and other contagious maladies. 
My son had the crud when he called AND pink eye 
AND 4 wisdom teeth had been pulled. This is my 
"never sick" kid... but he did not complain and I am assuming
he is well by now. Nowhere is the adage "no news
is good news" more applicable than boot camp.
Hopefully the entire division is better now.

The last few weeks are certainly hard, but at this point the divisions
should be working together and the training is more...
fun?? Is that the word? Well, more hands-on anyway.
They should be seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.

I see my own little light, too. In a short time
I will see my son~ briefly. He will depart for A School
in South Carolina the day after PIR. And then the real journey
begins. His schooling is long (2 years) and then out to the fleet
for 4 years and them some commitment to reserves... .
it just goes on and on. My son will not be home for most holidays.
He belongs to the U.S.Navy now... for real, and that 
is the hard part, the "my heart is bursting with pride" part,
the real letting go. 
I am learning my lessons and the first one
may be this~Make the best of the time you have. 
~not a bad approach to life in general, that "glass
half full" thing. I believe in that, try to live like that.
Gratitude is always the best choice.
For now, I am focused on our trip to RTC  in
a little over 2 weeks, to that moment when the new sailors 
enter the graduation hall...
For now that is enough.

Friday, September 2, 2011

best day(s) ♥

How wonderful is is to have some communication from my son
in boot camp!!! We have now gotten TWO real 
letters and a glorious, long phone call!!!!
My son is doing very well and has the honor
of holding a Recruit Petty Officer position! 
He sounds great in his letters and on the phone.
In spite of having a cold (known as the Ricky Crud),
pink-eye and having all 4 wisdom teeth pulled,
he is upbeat and determined! 
He had his birthday in boot camp and spent
his first hours of being 19 standing watch and toting
a 9mm pistol. He is making friends
and says his RDCs are "smart, good people"
beneath "the show they put on". 
I am so grateful for his positive attitude! 
Our trip is booked now and in 4 weeks 
we will be at our son's PIR.
That will be another 'best day".

I ♥ the gratitude campaign

It is no small thing to say "Thank you." Just do it.