Posted 1/5/2008 4:28 PM (GMT -6)
Hi Sue,

I so admire the men and women who serve in our armed forces. It would be hard, but I would be so proud of any of my kids if they had joined. You're right that at 18 they seem so innocent and unworldly, but this is a wonderful opportunity for him to grow and mature as a young man.

If this is his choice then maybe working with him and keeping those communication channels open is the best route to take. You sure don't want to him to shut you out.

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The only difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has it's limits. Albert Einstein: (1879-1955)

Posted 1/5/2008 5:36 PM (GMT -6)
Mochiah said...
X- I don't think you are being a smart aleck at all, just telling it like it exactly is.

I doubt this is going away....he started looking into the different branches a year ago. He was still 17 then so I would have had to sign for him and it was easier to postpone it. The only thing I asked was that he not sign with anyone until talking to each of the branches he was interested in. For this past year the Marines have been calling, stopping by the house, or had been talking to him at school on a weekly basis. Today he is talking with the Army recruiter. His cousin (a girl) went through Army boot camp this past summer, and a friend of his is also in the Army, so I think this is the branch of the military he will choose. His uncles (on husband's side) were in the Navy and Army, my brother was in the Navy, and his grandfather was also in the Navy over 20 years. I guess my apprehension is because 1) it is MY child, and 2) there is war.

I am pathetic and cry each time the news shows the picture of a young man who was killed in the war, it only makes my apprehension greater.

I guess I just remember back to when I was 18 and THOUGHT I knew everything and now it scares me that he is 18 and could very well be signing his ticket into the war....what a consequence. Anyway, thanks for listening.

(((((( Hugs ))))) Thank you, Sue. :)
 I have ADD and Dyslexia. I have a tendency to be over-sensitive and critical about my writing skills. What I mean doesn't always come across well through what I write.
But, there is an upside to his potentially joining the Armed Forces.  It WILL prepare him for a career both in the Military and as a civilian after his tour of duty is over.  But, that doesn't make it easy on YOU.  Just do your best to support him, and above all TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF the best you can!  You have every right to be apprensive, because this IS your child and we ARE at war!  What a tough spot you're in.  :(

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Posted 1/5/2008 6:24 PM (GMT -6)
We just finished speaking with the recruiter. My son is definitely not shutting me out, he wanted me there during the process and that makes it a bit easier. That is the catch 22, he is old enough to make the final decision, but young and inexperienced enough to want me there to help in the decision making...But at least he wants me there.

He goes on Tuesday with the recruiter to fill out other paper work and spend the day getting his physical, decide where/when he wants to do basic training and AIT. He has opted for 48 months active duty first, and he has to decide on his 3 "wish list" places to serve, then will serve his remaining 4 years 1 weekend a month/2 weeks a year. He knows he wants to go to Hawaii, and is considering Germany, but doesn't know of other places yet.

I am both the proudest I have ever been of him and yet the most scared at the same time. He is opening so many doors for himself, I just hope the war does not slam those doors shut.
Mochiah/a.k.a. Sue
cervical fusion 2006, with great result
L4-5 surgery with cages, plates, and screws in 2005, I have continued pain 
MEDS:  Fentanyl patch, Norco, Celexa, trazodone, and Parafon Forte
Im going to smile like nothing is wrong, act like everything is perfect, and pretend its not hurting me.

Posted 1/9/2008 12:00 PM (GMT -6)
I know exactly how you feel. It is wonderful he has included you in on his plans.
My son signed with the Navy and it will be 2 yrs that he began bootcamp soon.
I was very afraid and prrehensive also. He has already been on 2 deployments and will be on leave next week to see us. I am very proud of him. in less than 2 yrs he is a 3rd class Petty Officer. He is my only child, which I think made it harder and it is a hard thing to accept. But he'll always be your son and I feel for you and wish you, your son and family the best.
God bless,
Posted 1/9/2008 1:53 PM (GMT -6)
Aww, good luck with that process. I do feel your pain!! Although my two are 5 and 4, I would hate to heard those words out of their mouths when they get older. It would be a bitter sweet thing. I would be proud and sooo scared at the same time!
It takes alot of courage from your sons part, BE SUPER PROUD! He wants to serve our country!
Posted 1/10/2008 5:33 PM (GMT -6)
He was put up in a motel last night to go spend the day having his physical/vision/drug test today. Before he left I told him things were going so quickly that soon one of the times he leaves with the recruiter he won't be coming home for a he had better get used to giving me a hug every time he leaves now. It hit home a lot the other day when he asked for my SSN then a little while later the recruiter had him ask me if something happens to him do I want the money in one lump sum or yearly!! The way he asked was just like "what's for dinner" but my heart lurched. He will probably be sworn in tomorrow then choose where he wants to do boot camp and advanced individual training. I believe if he is able to be sworn tomorrow that he will be going this weekend for drill. It is definitely bitter sweet. I am extremely proud of him and love him beyond belief.
Mochiah/a.k.a. Sue
cervical fusion 2006, with great result
L4-5 surgery with cages, plates, and screws in 2005, I have continued pain 
MEDS:  Fentanyl patch, Norco, Celexa, trazodone, and Parafon Forte
Im going to smile like nothing is wrong, act like everything is perfect, and pretend its not hurting me.

Posted 1/11/2008 11:06 PM (GMT -6)
Oh boy do I remember going through all that. MEPS or rather Military Entrance Processing Station.
The Military loves Acronyms.

You take your ASVAB or Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test. Then if you pass or if you don't and are granted a wavier for low test scores you take your physical.
After that if you pass you are sworn in. You would be amazed at the amount of people who don't pass. Then you either go home and ship out to Basic at a later date or you ship out that day. There is of course a bit more to it than I've mentioned but you get the general idea

Post Edited (quahog) : 1/11/2008 9:20:01 PM (GMT-7)

Posted 1/12/2008 12:01 PM (GMT -6)
I have a son in the army and it is hard at times. He is in Iraq now for the 3rd. time,each has been for a minimum of 14mos.. As you his mother and I were very aprehensive of his joining the Army but at the same time so proud of him. He joined shortly after 9/11 and has not looked back since. He is now an E6. Depending on his MOS (job) he will not see action other than guard duty. Sooo as long as he joins with a technical job or something other than a grunt(regular soldier) he will be OK. It is hard seeing them leave each time they come home though,especially just before deployment. Your son will be well taken care of here and when overseas. It's his choice so please don't discourage him. It is a great opportunity for him as a young man to learn and see the world. Again as long as he goes in with a tech. MOS he will be OK.  BE PROUD OF HIM. 
Posted 1/12/2008 3:34 PM (GMT -6)
quahog- he went through MEPS on Thursday. He had already taken his ASVAB and scored well. He had speeding tickets in the past, so that is what the hold up is right now, making sure he has done everything he was supposed to do (pay fine and community service). However, we were under tornado watches here on Thurs evening and Friday and the computer system link from the military to the police was down, so they haven't finished checking it out. They also had to speak with the bank where he has a loan to be sure he would be okay not paying for a while when he was in basic and AIT. He had another speeding ticket after turning 18, and has to go to driving school, I think that is on Feb 1, so unless the military can work their magic and get him through sooner, he will be home til then.

Rubydoo1, he is going in for military police. He wants to do forensic science when finished with the military. They actually said he will do the criminal justice part in the military and can take on-line courses for the other classes he needs, so he can go right into forensics when he is out. They said he would be "closer" than others, but not as close as infantry. Obviously, he will be the police on base but, honestly, when not on base I am not sure what "closer" is going to mean.

I wouldn't dream of holding him back from what he wants to do. When he was 17 he was all over the place with where he wanted to go, first choice was Marines....I wouldn't sign for him then until he talked to each of the branches and found out what each offered. He ultimately had settled on Army National Guard, but is going to go active duty for 4 years as opposed to one weekend a month/2 weeks a year (Like his cousin did). I watched him in this last year after he graduated work a job and do very well, but after being laid off 2-3 months ago he went downhill quick (note the speeding ticket above) and really felt he was going nowhere. Since his speaking to the recruiter his confidence has come back and he has that sparkle and excitement in his eyes again. I know this is a good thing for him, but like you said, that doesn't make it much easier as a mother. We have instilled the necessities in them to get through life and we must have done one hell of a job to have them want to serve our country....I have already decided what it is I want to say to him before he I just need to be able to say it (let alone think it) without crying!!! I want him always to listen to his gut and follow his heart that way he will know what is right and true for him and he will be able to look back and say he has lived a life of no regrets. (see, tears in my eyes just typing that!)
Mochiah/a.k.a. Sue
cervical fusion 2006, with great result
L4-5 surgery with cages, plates, and screws in 2005, I have continued pain 
MEDS:  Fentanyl patch, Norco, Celexa, trazodone, and Parafon Forte
Im going to smile like nothing is wrong, act like everything is perfect, and pretend its not hurting me.

Posted 1/12/2008 10:05 PM (GMT -6)
I can tell from your post he will be just fine. Sounds like your son has a good game plan. Sounds like he wants this so he is allready a step in the right direction as far as attitude.
Posted 1/13/2008 9:44 PM (GMT -6)
I know how you feel, my son is 20 and is going back to Iraq for a second tour in Feb. It breaks my heart, I want to protect him even though he is 6'3" when I look at him I see a 7 year old. Basic was hard for me because it was the first time he was away from home, but then he went to Iraq and that was worse. But I have 3 other sons to keep me sane!

Good luck, but tell him not to believe anything unless he sees it in writing!

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