When R and I decided to tie the knot fourteen years ago, I knew that everything was going to change for me. I would no longer be living in the state where I was born and raised and where the majority of my family resided. I would have to live in the south which may as well have been an entirely new country. I would no longer be teaching.
Not only that but my new husband would be deploying within a month of my move to Augusta, Georgia.
I would be alone in a new place for four months.
Back then we didn’t have smart phones and our internet connection made a screechy sound. Any contact I had with R was sporadic and emotional. True, we did not have to wait months for snail mail like previous generations but watching any news about the Middle East was nerve-wracking especially since I had no idea where he would be.
So it was no surprise that as soon as he came home, we were expecting a baby! An actual baby! We were excited because this child was a first for both of us but terrified because we were nowhere near our families. Though the ultrasound was inconclusive as to the gender, I knew I was having a boy. After a couple of months of morning sickness, I craved steak and eggs. Hot dogs and rice. Chick-Fil-A several times a week. Yes, I gained forty pounds! (Compared to the girls’ pregnancies where I gained 25 pounds each pregnancy.)
I remember I was hot all the time. I insisted on opening the sliding door at night while R bundled up next to me in a thick cotton comforter like a caterpillar in a cocoon. One of those evenings we started doing the math of when R retired. How old would this unborn baby be when R finally retired? Where would we be living? Would this baby remember all of the times R was gone?
Sixth grade, we determined. The baby would be in sixth grade.
Fast forward to a week ago when this Georgia-born baby promoted. My, how time flies.
Congratulations, kid. We are so proud of you!