LOL. I have been a major slacker. I realize this, I accept it -- and I apologize for it. There is a very simple reason for it though - I have realized that the fewer posts that I make, that I can give myself a false sense of time going by faster. For example, the last post that I made was on "Day 150" - well, today's post is "Day 158" - so I can say to myself, "Oh my goodness, look at that, another eight days gone, and here just yesterday it felt like it was 'Day 150' - time is just flying by - well before you know it, Al will be here on R&R - and then he will be home for good." No I have not been inbibing in alcoholic substances, I promise. Although that might make time go faster too.
Al and I are genuinely s.i.c.k. of deployment. Just in the news this week there was two tidbits of info. that amused us greatly -- one was that divorce rates among soldiers are skyrocketing and the second is that Army recruitment goal attainment is at an all time low. LOL. Gee, hmmm, let me search my little pea-brain and see if I can figure out WHY in the world these two things could be happening??? Oh, that's right, if you never let a soldier be home and be around their family - or provide them access to decent commo when they're away from their family - or access to good counseling services upon return (six sessions doesn't cut it) - there probably won't BE a family for them to come to home to around the third or fourth deployment or so. And for any SMART soldier with ANY sense, after he's experienced one or two of those said deployments and he wants to KEEP his family - he (or she) will get out.
Now, I'm not trying to get anything started. Al loves our country and I do too - I'm very, very proud of him of serving. But there has to be a way to get this deployment issue solved - and there has to be a way to bolster up our MAIN fighting force and cut down on the length of Reserve and Guard deployments. To be honest with you, Al and I would be much more willing for him to go to Iraq TWICE in two years for a period of six months, instead of one time for an entire year. And the main fighting force people have it rough too - on my Army Wives board, since I joined last fall, women who had just gotten their men back last spring - already have those same men leaving again. Somehow, that just doesn't feel "fair" - you know?
Maybe it's because I'm stuck here at home and I just don't 'understand' and I can see everything in an 'idealized' way --- but to me, no matter what section of the military you are in, if the Army takes your loved one for a certain amount of time --- in Al's case it will have been for 545 days --- it should only be fair for you to get to keep them for that same amount of time. Is that crazy? I understand that they will need to keep up their training and they would maybe have to go for two week field ops exercises, etc. - but the 'majority' of those days would be spent at home with their family (or in the case of Reserve/Guard soldiers, working their civilian jobs).
Surely the military can see that job market is become highly competitive. That the ability to find "good" people is getting harder and harder . . . there ARE a lot of other options out there for highly qualified candidates --- and unless they are looking for a modern force of "drones" and "pulses", I hope that they realize and understand SOON that when you hire the soldier, that you hire that soldier's loved ones and families too. They say it on paper, but when the next piece of paper you look at says that your soldier is going to be gone for 545 days, it's a little hard to believe that the Army cares one little bit.
Okay, I'm off my soapbox - lol. Sorry about that!!
I am helping Al's mom move this weekend, so I will be in Jackson, MS. I get to spend time w/ my good friend Stacy - my deployment buddy - WHOO HOO!! And I get to see Trey-man, Al's Mini-me, so it should be a good time even with the moving part.
Sending lots and lots of hugs and blessings to all!! Mwah!