Being on time has really never been my strong suit. I will blame this on my never on time father. I swear that man will be late to his own funeral BUT also like him he will look fantastic when he arrives with his clothes all pressed and he will bring gifts for everyone. I know that sounds morbid but don't look at that way. The meaning behind it is simply this...when we do things whether late or not we go the full mile. We are thoughtful in our plannings and we always think of others. Does any of this have to do with what I will be posting about tonight? Hardly but it's just my way of saying "Prepare yourself because Im about to throw a full month's worth of info in your face!" See...it all ties together. I may not have updated in awhile but tonight I will be bringing you probably more information than you really need or want. That is what my pops would do. We cover all our bases and them some. It's a blessing sometimes to be late. At least that is the excuse I will be using for my lack of keeping up with this. Now for the hard part...getting my brain to retract everything that has happened since the last time I posted without leaving anything out. Whew...
So, today we sit at 22 days left before PIR and let me tell you I cannot wait until that day comes. The garage door opens, you see the sailors feet as they begin walking towards you, your heart sinks as you wait for your what used to be called SR or Sailor Recruit now Sailor in his or her pressed white uniform. I can't say whether I will even notice Blaine when that day comes. I can only imagine how much more weight he has lost or how much he has beefed up. He told me in his letters that he has passed all of his PT test to date except for his sit up test. I don't know if he has passed that since he last wrote or not but I can pretty much say that he did. In his last letter he wrote that they did an 8 minute run and that it was a piece of cake; that compared to his 1st letter of hardly finishing on time at under 12 minutes I think it is safe to say he probably had no problem with it. He also has mentioned that he still holds his position as Main Yeoman and has been getting up at 0430 every morning. His division finally won their first flag with only 5 more to earn. It's been a rough ride for their division. A lot of young kids who don't want to listen and do what they are told. (That probably would have been me.) I've been sending him encouraging letters telling him it is very important that he try to keep everyone on target and focused since he is someone older in the group and because he holds a leadership position.
He got the chance to call last week and we talked for about 10 minutes. He was very emotional on the phone and seemed very down but since then his letters have been more uplifting. I think he needed to hear our voices and just needed to know that we were behind him. For some reason it takes them far longer to receive our mail than it does for us to receive theirs. Of course they do have to train the recruit who handles the mail but still it seems it would be the other way around. I received several before he received mine and each one was asking more and more if we had forgotten about him. Poor guy. When he did receive the big package I sent him the 1st letter back to me said, "Oh my God Woman, thank you for my package!" We have joked off and on throughout our letters and I try to make it very light conversation for him. It's important to not say anything too negative but to also not leave him out of things completely.
Most of the letters we have received have been about the daily grind. PT, studying, and such. He did get his wisdom teeth taken out and said the dentist was very nice to let him listen to music because he was so nervous and he also got that hole in his front tooth fixed. He said he keeps looking at it and there is no trace of it at all. Says it is soo strange for it to just be gone! I know that is huge for him. He hated that hole and probably feels like a completely different person. He got a few days of rest although he hated to be confined to his bunk due to the surgeries and then he was granted another day or so because he came down with a nasty blister on his foot. After that day they let him wear tennis shoes for a few days and he was THRILLED about that! But it was short lived as it always is. It's a tough life those kids or in his case grandpa's live in BC. (Grandpa is what everyone calls him.)
The last bit of info I have is pretty puzzling to me right now. His A school was scheduled to be 8 weeks and has now been moved to 9 weeks and he has been granted what they call RAP which basically means he can work at the recruiters office instead of taking all vacation time when he is home. So, that is 5 days that he will get to save for a later time. The kicker to this whole thing is we both were under the impression that we wouldn't be finding out where we would be going until about 1/2 way through his A school BUT now he is saying that he should be getting this info in the next 2 weeks. I am very nervous about that because before we were under the impression that he would have to fight or compete for where he wants to go and it doesn't seem that is the case. It will be interesting to see how quickly Dillan and I need to pack up our stuff and head to our new home. That is all the information I have for that so I will keep everyone up to date when I know more.
Overall, I think he is really enjoying his time. He is missing home, wishing he could hug and kiss everyone and yet making friends that can last a lifetime, learning things about himself he never even dreamed he had in him and staying focused on making a better life for us all. I can't even begin to explain the pride I have for him right now and neither can Dillan. She has such great things to say about her daddy and she is counting down the days to him coming home. Just tonight, she took his letters, unfolded them and read aloud what she invisioned they said. It was the cutest thing and her daddy would be so proud to see that she is so proud of HIM!