Wednesday, October 26, 2005

A lot has Happened

I ordered a uniform. I know, I know...the National Guard will provide me all of my uniforms, but I wanted to go ahead and get my Military ID card and did NOT want to show up in civilian clothes. So I ordered a set of ACU's. A little pricey ($230) but WELL WORTH IT! I had my picture taken for a DA photo as well since I will be attempting to go AGR or Active Guard Reserves.

I was walking toward the personnel building and felt pretty darn good in uniform. Just as I reached the outskirts of the building an officer came outside and I snapped a sharp salute. It felt good and strange at the same time! I was grinning from ear to ear. Only after I actually had my ID in my hand did I feel "official".

Today I did my first drill. I won't be in town during my actual drill weekend so my 1SGT is allowing me to drill during the week prior. It was strange. The Army and National Guard is VASTLY different from the Navy. Not to mention I have been out for almost 15 years. I am learning a lot about the inner workings and that is good.

My son (10 years old) had been having problems with his mom being in the Military. I had him long after I got out of the Navy so he has never had to deal with anything but a stay at home mom. He would hardly talk to me and when the topic came up he got silent.

One day we were out shopping and I finally asked him to talk to me. Funny how it is MUCH easier to deal with feelings while driving down the road! You don't have to look at each other and there is a sort of psycological buffer there. So I told him to come clean, lay out his feelings to me. He said "Why can't you just be a mom?"

Well. Indeed, why can't I just be a mom? I thought about that for a moment. What does it mean to be a mom? I patiently explained to him that I loved him and his sister more than anything. They are the apple of my eye, my every reason why. I explained that I had been home for him for 10 years and for Grace, 3 years. I love my children deeply. I want to protect them. I want to nurture tham, I want them to have a future. Part of that is why I chose to return to the military.

I love this country. I have lived overseas as a child and made many trips to Mexico to help a poor family we knew. My father came to the U.S. from Colombia at age 14. I learned early on that we live in a very blessed nation and are very fortunate. I have always realized that our way of life is not normal for other nations. My own great-great granfather was a General in the Colombian Army and became President during a Coup! Things like honest elections, a stable military and police force, security in jobs and life are a liberty and freedom fought for by my ancestors on my mom's side.

Along with their father, I am my children's protector. I am a "mom". That means making sacrifices for them, helping them to grow and mature into adults and not just grown children. I feel I am protecting them in this way. I am insuring their future. I am contributing to society the way I would wish for them to do as well.

I want to serve and provide for my family. I want my son to realize that those things, liberty and freedom, are not free. Do I have to serve? No. I consider it a privelege. How do you explain that to a child? I put it in the simplest terms I could. He understood and actually was proud of me! He began to happily chatter away and later asked if I could order a set of ACU's for him! :-)

It was a good exercise for me to examine my feelings and motives. It clarified some things for me in my mind. It also set my son's mind at peace. It was a good day.


Blogger Eric said...

Congratulations, SGT.

I did 4 years active Army 97-01, left to go to college, and now I'm thinking hard about going back in as ANG or USAR. If you can do it, I should be able to.

Sunday, October 30, 2005 12:15:00 PM  
Blogger SGT Lori said...

I should be the Guard's poster child ..."If SHE can do it, so can YOU!" LOL.

I am thrilled to be able to serve again. Go for it!

Sunday, October 30, 2005 4:46:00 PM  

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