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My Last Letter to Marine Boot Camp

This is excerpted from my last letter to boot camp, which I sent today. I cannot wait to see what the next few months bring!!

–Mighty Marine Mom

The past 13 weeks have moved more quickly than I worried they would. I cannot tell you how much I have enjoyed writing your letters every day, even when I didn’t have much to say (which was probably most of the time). It helped me feel connected to you, even though we couldn’t text or talk like we normally do. 

We usually check mail (at our centralized neighborhood post boxes) in the evening while walking the dog, but there was no way I could wait that long each day to know if we’d received a letter. So I’d walk down the street every afternoon, just after the postman came. More often than not, no letter. But it always made my day when I saw one of your small envelopes.

I have read through your letters a couple of times; my, how you changed over the weeks! Your first letters were hard to read (it’s not easy for a Mom to see, “God I hate this place”), but we knew they would be. We are so proud of you for persevering and getting through those first initial weeks when you hated it so.

Your calls a couple of weeks ago were a complete surprise and a true gift. Even when you couldn’t chat, we both thought you sounded good. I am still smiling about getting to hear your voice.

The videographers drove all of us crazy last Friday; they didn’t post the video until 8:30 at night! We picked you out immediately. We were thrilled to see all the trophies, and then “Honor Platoon” flashed across the screen! We both just about came off of the sofa! SO proud of you and your platoon mates. I am looking forward to meeting SDI SSgt Nguyen; he must be a very good motivator!

As I write this, we will see you in only five days. Every day, I think about seeing you during your moto-run and during your on-base liberty, then having you on the plane with us on the way home.

I can’t wait to find out what’s in store for you after MCT, and then, after tech school. We have already made kennel reservations so we can fly to wherever you are for Christmas.

We love you very, very much, and we are tremendously proud of you.



Finally..the Platoon Video and the Final Stretch

The videographers sorely tested my patience, but they finally posted his platoon video (click on 1041) at about 8:30 pm last Friday night. (Third row from the top. He enters from the left, middle of the row; the first recruit whose shoulders point to the right instead of left. Look for the Brooks ears <sigh>.)

Honor Platoon! We are so thrilled and excited for him and his platoon-mates. Many have asked me, “What does that mean?” The six platoons compete in many of the qualifications I have previously mentioned (pugil sticks, shooting, physical fitness, etc). The platoon that scores the highest receives “Honor Platoon” designation. (Notice all the trophies at the Drill Instructor’s feet.) It will look fabulous on his service record.

I savor pleasant surprises, like an unexpected Saturday letter (since in his previous letter, he said “might be the last”).

I’m enjoying the letter-writing so much that I may continue it after boot camp. Just like his Mom, he has never been “chatty,” on email, text or phone. Putting pen to paper connects me to him in a way that an email can’t.

With limited information (some letters and a video), we like his voice and how appears. His letters continue to sound upbeat, even though he faces struggles ahead. (They started Crucible today; done Thursday.) He has not “bulked up” as much as we thought he might, and he didn’t have any weight to lose, so he’s no skinnier either.

We are unbelievably proud that he has done so well and has persevered through this difficult summer. He sounds excited about his upcoming job/tech school, and that will help him get through infantry school (which I can’t imagine is very much fun).

I’m very close to being an “official” Marine Mom…I can’t wait to see what that brings!

–Mighty Marine Mom