To say it was traumatic is an understatement.
Right off the bat she was in tears. "Mom, I have the meanest TI..." and it went downhill from there. It was all I could do to keep a stiff upper lip and be the encouraging mom I needed to be for her. I succeeded and got her to calm down enough to give me her address clearly. She came through, clear as a bell - even with the TI's in the background yelling "45 seconds!" and later "20 seconds!"
In the end - after a whole 2 minutes - she was a little calmer. I told her that I loved her as many times as I could squeeze it in and we said goodbye.
Family members, please know that it is perfectly normal for 1st phone calls from BMT to be exactly as bad as V's was. I knew from talking to many other AF parents it wouldn't be all "sweetness and cheer" but I am convinced that nothing can prepare a mom to hear this call and not utterly flip out (afterwards).
Did I? Oh yeah. But I have the benefit of a great support system of people who understand. I immediately talked to Bre in Colorado and Deb in Ohio and many other AF personnel, parents and spouses who have had this experience and more and live to tell the tales. Thanks guys, you helped see me through this one with flying colors.
I have been advised, since this is a public blog and anyone can come across it, not to post V's addy on the page. It's sad that people would send a recruit anti-war hate mail, but evidently it happens. For her protection, if you'd like to send a letter ~ and she can use the encouragement! ~ I am asking you to e-mail me with your name and I will respond to you with the address.
Now... about the second phone call...
1 week ago