His First Real Letters Home
We knew the going would be tough the first six weeks, and we were not mistaken. The going is much harder than he expected. It’s hard to read the “I really don’t want to be here” statements, but we’ve both told him that letters home are a perfectly safe place to vent. (He’s signing/reviewing his contract in the photo below.)
So far, we have received three letters, which I find encouraging. That means he’s finding at least a little time to write a few times a week. I’m trying to write him every day, even with silly, innocuous news. He sounded very excited in his last letter, since he had just received three of our letters. So mail call is something he’s really looking forward to.
They’ve put him in a variety of leadership positions (squad leader, prayer leader, scribe), but these positions change frequently. (In the span of four days in his three letters, he was fired/re-hired as both scribe and squad leader.) He doesn’t have long to eat, but he said he’s eating healthier now than he has in a long time.
I have found a training calendar online. It’s probably not exactly the same as what he’s doing, but it’s close. I use it to mark off the days, and to give myself an idea of what he might be doing today.
He has only eight more days of “phase 1” training. I don’t think it will necessarily get “easier” after this, but at least there will be some things (like learning how to fire his rifle) that he will look forward to. For rifle firing, his platoon will be shipped to Camp Pendleton (just north of San Diego) for three weeks. Since MCRD is smack in the middle of the city (right next to the airport, in fact), it’s an unsuitable place for rifle firing and field training.
We’re hoping for more letters this week. I haven’t checked the mailbox this closely in years!
—Mighty Marine Mom