How Would You React If Your Son Wanted to Enlist?

How Would You React If Your Son Wanted to Enlist?

“So, Mom, I Need to Talk to You About Something…”

Oh crap. My 18-year-old son, Nathan, wants to have a sit down with me to talk. My mind is going in a million directions, and none of them positive.

My first thought was:

“Oh, no, his girlfriend is pregnant. Dammit, what do we do now? They are too young, I have two 5 year olds, I can’t take in a baby, but that’s rude to think they would want me to take it, she has a mom, and she’s 20. Ok, so I probably won’t have to take care of the baby, but they don’t have any money, and he has two months before high school graduation!!! WHY DID THEY DO THIS TO MEEEEEE???”

While all these thoughts are going through my head, I somehow, calmly say: “Ok, what’s on your mind?”

He said: “Well, you know how I was going to go to college in the fall?”when your child wants to enlist

My brain: WAS going to college in the fall????

Me: Yes…

Nate: Well, I was thinking about joining the Air National Guard.

My brain: The military???

Me: The military???

Nate: Yes. (He then gets a bit excited and eager) I was thinking about it a lot, and I can join the Reserves, and it’s only a weekend a month and two weeks a year. I would just go to YSU in the Spring, instead of the Fall. This way I can help pay for school, and travel, and be part of something bigger.

My brain: The military???

So then I say the worst thing: But, Nathan, you don’t like work. Or movement!

Nate: (laughs) Yeah, I know.

Me: This is the last thing I ever thought you would want to do. Could you possibly go overseas? Could you be beheaded by Isis??

(Found out later when he told my mom his intentions, she asked the same thing).

Nate: Yes, I could possibly go overseas if they need my reserve unit.

My brain: The military???

Me: You know you have to go to boot camp, right? Where they call you a maggot, and get in your face and scream so hard you get their spittle on your cheek but you can’t wipe it off because if you do they will make you run 5 miles in mud carrying 100 pounds of guns, right?

Nate: (laughing) Yes, basic, I know. I think I can handle it.

Me: But you can’t even wake up to an alarm set at 8 am!!! How are you going to get through basic???

Nate: Wow, mom, you’re taking this better than I thought.

Me: Well, I thought for sure you were going to tell me you were going to be a Dad.

Nathan has been through a lot. Because we moved to another town when he was in 1st grade, and I taught at a Christian school for a few years, then got divorced and moved to another town, this poor child has gone to 8 different schools from K-12. He has been bounced back and forth with the joint parenting, and it doesn’t take much to realize he’s more comfortable not staying in one place. I’m sure the idea of the military and the free travel is appealing.

It has been hard for me to get my head around it. My child, the well-spoken, intelligent child that has wanted to be a lawyer and eventually the POTUS for as long as I remember wants to join the Reserves. I am supporting him in his ventures because I don’t think this is something he would choose on a whim.

I’m scared to death, though.  He’s my baby. I know I’m being irrational, but I like his head, and I want him to keep it.

 

 

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Carrie Wible is an Ohio native, a freelance writer and blogger, a one time 1-8 grade teacher, and a musician/arranger. She just debuted her male choir/band arrangement of "Frozen Heart" for the Wadsworth Community Band, and is currently working on a piece for their summer season. She has 3 boys, and a tall, (medium) dark and handsome husband who she spends time with beating at Trivia Crack, and watching supernatural and horror shows. She will also beat your granny for a pint of Ben & Jerry's Peanut Butter World.

Carrie Wible

Carrie Wible is an Ohio native, a freelance writer and blogger, a one time 1-8 grade teacher, and a musician/arranger. She just debuted her male choir/band arrangement of "Frozen Heart" for the Wadsworth Community Band, and is currently working on a piece for their summer season. She has 3 boys, and a tall, (medium) dark and handsome husband who she spends time with beating at Trivia Crack, and watching supernatural and horror shows. She will also beat your granny for a pint of Ben & Jerry's Peanut Butter World.

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