23 years ago, the US Army took a chance on a kid from Arizona, a kid that had NO military history in his background, not with family, ROTC, etc... Just a young man ready to take care of his young and new family and wanting to serve his country. Sal left on February 22, 1989-It had been a busy month for us, we had just gotten married and were nearly done with our first pregnancy! I was living with my sister in law, Michelle and SCARED! Being an Army Brat is very different than being an Army spouse-and I was about to find out and learn from the school of hard knocks. So Sal left, I cried and thought I would never see him again. I wondered how would I give birth by myself without him? 12 weeks was going to be a very long time.... A few days later I got a phone call stating he was fine and in Alabama and PS-it would be 16 weeks, NOT 12!!! Should have known then that we were on Army time and not our own. 16 weeks DRAGGED by, I gave birth to our 1st child, Nicholas, I moved back home with my mom, our nephew became very sick. I was scared, but I did it!!! HE did it!! We flew to Alabama to watch him graduate. When they soldiers marched into the area I swear they all looked the same and Sals grandma took pics of all of them, claiming they were each Sal, LOL.. Finally I saw him, his beautiful clear, honest and good blue eyes, sparkling with equal excitement in seeing me and our son he had yet to meet. The Drill Sgt knew that the baby I held was Sals and tormented him a bit while they were in formation, he even came over and oohed and ahhhed over him and held him-all while looking right at Sal. Poor Sal, his newborn son was 5 feet away from him being held by his DS. They finally released them and we had our hugs and kisses and Sal just couldnt stop staring in amazement at this little boy we just welcomed into the world. He counted his fingers and his toes, kissed him and cuddled with him. The smile on Sals face was priceless. It was WONDERFUL being with him again. I missed my best friend, I missed his smile, his gentleness, his love. The next day was graduation day-It was JUNE in ALABAMA, so you can imagine how hot and sticky it was. We sat on a bus and were driven to the theater for the ceremony. Sal looked amazing with his green uniform and 2 ribbons, to me he looked as wonderful as a 4 star General!!! He graduated and then I had to leave without him. His Top secret clearance still wasnt done and he had to wait until it was. BOOOO, so we said our see you laters and the baby and I headed back to Az, where I would start packing up and prepping for our 1st PCS to Virginia. He ended up coming home 2 days later and we were reunited!!! We loaded up our uhaul (why we got a uhaul, I will never know, everything we owned could have fit into my trunk, LOL.. And we said goodbye to Arizona, our families and our childhood... We were grown ups now and on our way to our new life. This life would prove rough sometimes and there were times I thought I couldnt live this way, but always, Sal comforted me and listened to me and made it better. We made it, we survived on 800.00 a month, we made do and went wherever the Army told us to go. The Army allowed us an adventure that is indeed priceless. Certainly it came with sacrifices-MANY, but always worth it. We were and are a team in this. So, to my Love,
-Thank you for the adventure you have given me. Thank you for serving this beautiful country and making a difference in so many lives. You have become an AMAZING NCO in the Army and I hope you always know how proud we are of you. Thanks for being a decent and good man at home and at work, thank you for reminding other soldiers that FAMILY is an important part of the ARMY and to live right and true for both. Thank you for having respect for military spouses and reminding those that needed it at times, that the spouses and children of soldiers also make sacrifices and that you felt they had it harder than you did, LOL.. My words can never describe the love and respect I have for you,my sweet man... Im fine with whenever you want to retire.
With much love-
Household six :)