What really made me proud was Michael going to all the different Military recruiters and talking to them about their band programs. He really wants to play in one of the Military bands. All of the recruiters were quite impressed with him, with the exception of one and unfortunately it was the one that Michael was most interested in, too bad that recruiter was a huge jerk. Thankfully the others got him excited and are working on getting Michael auditions set up for the February time frame. Michael recognizes that it is very difficult and competitive to get a slot in the band and has made the decision to start dedicating himself to prepare should he be fortunate enough to get an audition.
All of our boys have expressed the desire to serve in the Military at some point in their lives. None have said they want to make it a career, they simply want to serve their country like their parents. That makes me so proud. That being said, it's a scary concept as a mother. I've sent my husband off to war and that has been difficult know what he experienced. I still want to protect my child from nightmares, not send him into one. I know that's being dramatic, but it's how I feel. At the same time I am proud of Michael for wanting to do what less than 1% of America is willing to do. And while joining the Military to serve in the band sounds wimpy (trust me, we've heard it all), what a lot of people don't know is that the band deploys a lot and when they deploy they end up pulling a lot of security. No matter what branch, they are still Soldiers, Marines, Airman, Sailors first!
As we were walking out of the high school and Michael chatted with some of his friends about the tables they visited (btw, still flattered by the girls who told Michael I didn't look old enough to be his mom!), it was fun to hear why everyone was choosing which schools. And people were very impressed with Michael's desire to serve in the Military and combine it with his passion of music.
We left the high school on a high note. We came home, talked about our experience, waited for the other kids to get home and then I remembered I had been asked to help with a send off for a unit that was deploying to Afghanistan. I quickly changed and headed out to our USO.
I knew I would be emotional, goodbyes always do that to me. What I did not anticipate was being overwhelmed with emotions as it hit me that it could be my son in the next couple years loading those buses. There was a set of parents there with their young Soldier and the anguish on their face just broke my heart.
Have your children expressed the desire to serve their country and how do you feel about it?