color: SOME SOLDIER'S MOM: Love you, too, Mom... I will.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Love you, too, Mom... I will.

My cell phone rang...

Actually, the area of my cell phone was vibrating just as we were walking into The Kingdom (more on that later). I was originally going to ignore the fuzzy buzzing, but as I was just inside the doorway, I looked to see who was calling. I didn't recognize the area code, but there were those last four numbers telling me it was coming through a DoD switching station. We'd become accustomed to those last four numbers when Noah and Our Guys were in Iraq the last time.

At first, there was that pause and fleeting moment of confusion 'cause, of course, Noah's not there, he's here... and just as quickly I knew it was someone calling from The Sandbox. Having had one of those calls once, my heart did a quick uptic in beats as I reversed course back out to the lobby, flipped open the phone and said, "Hello?"

"Hey Mom!!"

BIG SMILE!

"Hey V.!!"

Fortunately our numbered theatre was at the end of the long hallway and there was a comfy bench as I sat to enjoy a lengthy call with one of Our Guys. I have had a few calls from the Guys since they deployed back in March, but they are usually brief due to calling on the run or after just getting back from an Op on their way to breakfast and/or sleep and typically asking us to forward messages to people or the Rear D at Ft Benning or quick thanks for packages...

Their FOB and their living arrangements are much MUCH better than OIF3 when they endured truly bleak conditions near Baqubah and then in Ramadi -- even to having a coffee shop at the FOB. He describes the newest living arrangements and says that it is quite pleasant compared to the overcrowded conditions back at Kelly Hill. He says they received our most recent packages and was again thankful for the little pleasures... V says they are very busy out where they are and are outside the wire every day... and he says there are always plenty of bad guys willing to give up their heads to see if they can outshoot the Americans and the IA and IPs... and he ends with a short laugh. While he's not in the same platoon as Our Guy R, he does see him occasionally and says he's doing well and also sends his thanks and love.

He asks how Noah and M are doing and we talk about the continuing delays and red tape and paper work associated with getting benefits already earned (more on that later, too) and I could actually hear the disdain and sneer in his voice when he said, "Yeah, they can break 'em but not pay 'em..." Wonder how the Army and the VA and our esteemed Congresspeople feel when they know guys in service to this country -- putting it on the line every day -- have no faith that their needs can be met and debts repaid as promised?

He says he's going before the promotion board within the next few weeks. "Oh, that's great, V -- finally decided to go E-5?" I chuckle. "Well, hell, Ma," he says, "if I have to give 'em another 6 [years], I might as well do it in style," he laughs loudly. He tells me what month he has pulled for his mid-tour R&R and promises to call as soon as he has his exact dates as he will travel West to see his family and then we will all be within spitting (or at least driving) distance of one another... and we name potential places to meet (like VEGAS since he has a brother close by!!) and, although he doesn't think his R&R will coincide with our time at the
BlogWorld Expo, if it does, we'll hope that one of the famous (or is that infamous?) "Our Guys" can poke his head in for a day or two! I tell him he might get the chance to go to a college football game if he's home around Veterans' Day since Noah is doing the coin toss as part of the Wounded Warrior Project which V thinks is terrific and says he thinks the Guys will get a kick out of that... and says how proud he is of his brother [Noah]...

We talk for a little while more about people we know... his family... things going on... Noah... he says how much he misses him this deployment... how they talk about him and he can't wait to tell the guys that he talked to me.... and all too soon I get the dreaded, "I gotta go, Ma." I tell him we all love him and that we think of him and the others every day... that they are always in our thoughts and hearts... I think he got a little choked up... I know I did. I closed the conversation the way I always do with all my Guys, "I love you, son. Stay safe. Come home soon." And he closed with the words they all say, "Love you, too, Mom... I will."

As I walked back into the movie theatre I had a smile on my face and in my heart, but a tear in my eye...

7 Comments:

At 9/29/2007 8:32 PM , Anonymous MissBirdlegs in AL said...

Well, now I've got a tear in MY eye...

 
At 9/29/2007 10:11 PM , Blogger Stacy said...

Nothing sweeter than the sound of their voice on the other end of the phone. Glad you got to hear from them.

 
At 9/30/2007 2:49 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

A tear here also. Doesn't matter if the son is "real" or "adopted", we support and hold them in our hearts, minds, and prayers. It is an honor providing not only mailed 'goodies', but also conversation that bolsters and sustains the spirit. Thanks for sharing this story.
Cathy B

 
At 10/01/2007 8:17 AM , Blogger David M said...

Trackbacked by The Thunder Run - Web Reconnaissance for 10/01/2007
A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention, updated throughout the day...so check back often.

 
At 10/01/2007 2:51 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is Susan. My daughter is leaving soon for another deployment in Iraq. I just returned from a visit with her before she goes. I remember those calls vividly that you just described and will live for them again. May God bless them all and you too!

 
At 10/01/2007 3:50 PM , Blogger MaryAnn said...

Aww... you're the greatest, SSM.

 
At 10/05/2007 12:50 AM , Anonymous Silvia said...

This one puts a tear in my eye every time:

Do you remember me

 

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