Week 7 Crockett had off base leave and was able to call me for several hours. He spent an entire day off the base, soaking up Cape May, NJ. He ate lots of good food, saw the Dark Knight Rises, and enjoyed being able to chat with his shipmates in a casual environment.
Week 8 was mostly administrative time for the recruits as they made all their final arrangements for their next unit. Crockett got to call me several times that week as we discussed our impending move to California which (at the time) was less than a week away!
Then finally graduation was upon us!! I began my journey to Cape May with my mom and in-laws on Thursday. I was so nervous the entire day! The flight went as well as a flight can go which is a huge praise report. I am very afraid of getting sick and the last time I flew I was SO sick. I had been in fear of our 3.5 flight to Philadelphia for a while. I spent all of Thursday morning in prayer asking for peace and my God delivered. I was at ease when we got to the airport and I did not get sick once on either flight. It just amazes me that God cares about the little things in my life. I know that he loves me, but I will never grow used to the feeling I get when he answers a "small" prayer. He could have just as easily allowed me to get sick so that I would turn to him in my pain, but instead he allowed me to have a comfortable trip. I give him all the glory. God is so good and merciful!
On Thursday night I couldn't sleep so I was exhausted Friday, but I will never forget that day. Ever. Here is a brief run down.
We left our hotel which was what we thought to be about 20-30 minutes away from the base. It took us over an hour to get their. Because of this I missed the spouses meeting, but we arrived just as the family brief was starting. We had to stand in the back because the room was full. We watched a brief video that explains in detail a little bit about the life of a recruit while in boot camp. It was very informative. If you are interested, you can watch it below.
After the video a few speakers talked to us and told some stories. It was very cool to have Admiral Papp present as well. He is the commandant of the USCG. There are only 2 people above him: the Secretary of Homeland Security and the President of the United States. Next, we headed over to the gym where graduation would take place. As we were walking across the street ZULU 186 decided to surprise us by marching past the crowd singing a cadence. The family members were so excited! I took that opportunity to run inside the gym and get a good seat so I could run straight to Crockett after it was over. My father in law filmed the company marching and it was pretty cool; I'm a little sad I missed it.
When I walked into the gym it was nearly empty except for the band seated at the far end. I took a seat in the middle on the second row and saved seats for the rest of my family. I sat their just taking it all in knowing I was going to see my husband very soon! As more families started to walk in the band began to play. It was a marching song, not a slow melody and tears immediately filled my eyes. I started to get so anxious and all I wanted to do was run out and go find Crockett. But I didn't. I waited some more. Something I have begun to be very good at doing. After the presenting of the colors, the national anthem, and the playing of all the military songs ZULU 186 finally marched in. It was hard to find Crockett at first because they all looked the same. Same haircut, same uniform, same marching. When I did spot Crockett though it was very excited and nerve-wracking! I felt like I did when we first met. I was wondering what it was going to be like to be near him and how it would feel to hold his hand. Would he kiss me? Would it be weird or stiff because I was so out of practice? Did I even remember how to do that?! What would he think about how I looked? Was my dress ok? Did my hair look ok? I was a giant ball of nerves!
The ceremony seemed to drag on forever. I just wanted it to be over so I could hug my man! And then, it finally was over. The CCs yelled one last time and ZULU 186 was disbanned. Never again would a recruit company call themselves ZULU 186. It was really cool. As the new graduates began to shake each others hands and some started to spread out and search the crowds I desperately searched for Crockett. I was looking where I knew he had been standing and then I turned my head and he was almost right in front of me. I squealed a bit and flew into my husband's waiting arms. As he held me I cried and never wanted to let go.
We had an amazing weekend in Cape May & Philadelphia. We experienced lots of history and felt like newlyweds again. We didn't leave each others side for a second. We flew home and Crockett got to be in Texas for a few days before heading back to Cape May where he is now. He is waiting for a medical release and then we can finally be on our way to the next step of our USCG journey. I miss him already and can't believe we are separated again, but I'm so thankful for the time we had together. He's supposed to be in NJ for 2 weeks, but we've heard from those who were actually there 3 months. As scary as that idea is, it's just part of being a military wife. I have to trust God for everything. I have no control. I have no plans other than the ones he tells me. I know I have to just sit back and trust.