May 29, 2013

The Marines are playing with our lives like a yo-yo

     I completely understand that my son's decision to join the military is his and his alone.  I understand that the phrase on his ID card "property of the United States Marine" actually refers to him and not the card.  I know it is a recruiter's job to simply find bodies to fill slots.  What I do not appreciate is this game they are playing with our lives.
     Sonny is not the typical recruit.  He has had to wait a year to fulfill his enlistment because we had to wait for his braces to come off.  During that time he has been putty in his recruiter's hands.  The original plan was for him to join the reserves until he finished his BA.  He would be spending his summers at officer training and upon graduation he would transfer from the Reserves into full-time active duty.
   During the past year his recruiter repeatedly dismissed being a reservist.  Real Marines aren't part-time, was a recurring comment Sonny would repeat. Though it is only my personal conspiracy theory Sonny seemed to service an incredibly high number of Marines at work, who echoed the part-time trash.  At one point we were looking to transfer to a big 10 school after he finished his AA.
    ~Am I sounding bitter; just keep reading.
    The closer it got to the date when his braces were coming off I started hearing talk of not going reserves and enlisting.  I know he wasn't thrilled with being a part-time student at the local college and didn't want to be at home.  He was seeing others go away and pursue his dreams, he was definitely feeling frustrated.
     The worse part was knowing that we had no say in all of this, talk about cutting cords with a chain saw.
Having to stand by and watch him make decisions that I was not 100% behind effected our relationship.  He was hurt, I was hurt and while we both wanted to meet in the middle there truly wasn't one.  I had a hard time watching him, in my opinion, being manipulated by his recruiter.
     Sonny finally signed new enlistment papers, okay I was prepared for that.  What made me absolutely crazy was the fact that his recruiter got him to sign an open contract.  The phrase he used was "What is more important the job or being a Marine?".  Seriously that is what he said to my son.  Now mind you my son, as I've shared in the past is an extremely strong willed person so you can only imagine what it took for the recruiter to convince him all of this was his own idea.
     By signing an open contract Sonny is pretty much their fill-in guy.  Someone drops out last minute and they need to fill that slot, Sonny ships out.  That's what happened Tuesday.  While I am in my husband's hospital room eagerly awaiting test results Sonny calls and to let us know he is shipping out tomorrow.  Yes less than 24 hours notice.  I truly lost it.  What with your Dad in the hospital you're leaving?  My recruiter said this is an incredible opportunity for me and I need to jump at it.  That was at 12 noon.  For the next hour we made phone calls, tried to make arrangement. all the while not knowing if Hubby was coming home later or not.  Sonny finally convinced the recruiter to meet with us so we could understand the entire process for tomorrow.
    Literally 15 minutes before we was to meet us in the hospital room the recruiter calls to say he's not shipping, he took too long to decide and someone else took the spot.  Guess who the evil villain turns out to be in this scenario???  Yup, you guessed it ~ me.
     So here we are, Hubby's home though without any real answers, Sonny is beyond upset but won't even talk about it, Grace is totally stressed out which means she's probably in her room exercising and I'm eating my way through this entire situation.  Everyone keeps telling me Sonny will come home a wonderful man full of respect.  Well guess what it would be nice if the Marines showed us a little of that respect now.

OK thank you for my vent ~ the soap box is now available
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