My baby. Not anymore. Seeing him yesterday at MEPS, so nervous yet excited was truly a vegetable soup of emotions as a mom. The pride in my heart is in conflict with a heavy heart. My head knows these next six and a half weeks will turn my 18 year old boy into a man in the blink of an eye. My son whom I have known for 18 years, will no longer be the same person. Of course my mind knows the obvious, he will grow to be a better person. However, my heart knows the door has closed on the chapter of being this boy's mom...it is truly time to step into the role of parent of an adult. Parent of a soldier.
Over the course of the next six years, my son will finally live his dream. He will be an airman in the United States Air Force. Despite the "uncoolness" for being patriotic, John has always held true to who he is. The depth of him, defines passion for our country. While other kids listened to all the rap and hip-hop...he loves to listen to Toby Keith sing of being true to our country. One of his favorite songs as a child has always been "God Bless the USA." John lives this song. He is now living this pride.
I love my baby. It is now time for the rest of the country to love and respect him as well. Many will never know his smiling eyes, but they will enjoy the freedoms he will fight to keep for all of us. Many will never know his quirky humor, but they will enjoy pride of being an American.
John, I am so deeply proud of you and I do love you so.