When I woke my husband’s voice was still in my head. Hearing him speak to me on the phone yesterday with such enthusiasm, excitement, and fatigue was so reassuring – he was pursuing his dream and was passionate about what our future would be like once he was done with Basic Training, and he was working hard to provide for me. Hearing the increased confidence in his sweet words was such a blessing to me and I must admit, it was a huge turn-on.
Anyway, I smiled and got out of bed and deliberated silently in my head about what I should put on. If I were at my own home I wouldn’t have worried about getting dressed right out of bed but since I’m staying at my parents’ house I knew I needed to at least put a on a bra. And if I’m going to go through all that trouble, may as well put on an entire outfit. After tying up my running shoes and securing my ball cap to my head, I felt proud of myself for dressing in my workout clothes.
Once the coffee kicked in and my peanut butter toast settled in my belly, I finished stretching and exited the house. It was a clear, beautiful morning. I breathed in the fresh country air when excitement started assaulting my mind. “Maybe the mail’s here?” My husband said that I should get his letters any day and I knew that meant that they could be waiting for me in the mailbox today. I immediately dismissed that idea since the mail usually didn’t come till noon and it was only 9am. You see, I had been checking the mail almost every hour at my parents’ house to try to get an idea of exactly when the postman would come. Checking the mail has actually become one of the most important events of my days since my husband’s been away in Boot Camp.
I knew I should start running, but my heart would not let me rest till I looked inside the mailbox. I knew the odds were against the mail being delivered this early, and I didn’t want to get my hopes up about receiving his letters today since they could easily arrive tomorrow or next week. I debated opening the mailbox because I didn’t want to start my run in a bummed mood, but I found myself in front of the small, metal mail box and it was taunting me. Why was this such a big deal? It’s just mail. And it’s going to be empty anyway.
Oh, actually the box was stuffed. Already? Butterflies on crack were fluttering in my heart…magazines, advertisements, coupons, bills, and four envelopes addressed to me from the USS Arleigh Burke…his letters! Are you freaking kidding me?! It’s only 9 o’clock and I have four letters from my sailor?! Thus began my run…back into my parent’s house, haha.
His words were so descriptive and gave me a pretty good idea of what his days were like in Illinois. Lots of PT (physical training), standing for hours at attention, getting yelled at, eating healthy cafeteria type food and trying to sleep in a bed that was actually a 4” thick pad made out of wetsuit material. He explained that his “promoted position” was being the Chief’s Yeoman (pronounced “yo-men”) which is pretty much is his assistant or secretary. That meant that he got to escape some of the punishment and cleaning that the rest of the S.R.’s (Seaman Recruits) had to endure. My husband also was allowed more sleep with this position, but he said that it was so hard to stay asleep on that “wrestling mat” of a mattress and he constantly woke with numb limbs.
My husband has this special ability to make me swoon. He has the sweetest heart that a man can have, but he is such a man’s man. A sexy combination of strong and soft. Anyway, this is one of my favorite passages from his letters:
“I hardly get any sleep because we have to wake each other up in shifts all night long to shave, iron, and shine our shoes – it’s so lame. Plus it’s freezing in our compartment and this bed is like a piece of cardboard! I miss sleeping in our bed with you. I can’t wait to fall asleep holding you. I miss you constantly. Sometimes I get overwhelmed with missing you and I miss you more everyday. The memories and thoughts of how you make me laugh are what’s getting me through the rough times here. I hope that you are happy, safe and healthy. I cannot wait to see you and hold you in my arms. I love you with all of my heart and miss you terribly. I pray for you constantly and hope you are having fun and staying busy.”
Sigh, what a love I’ve found. After folding up my three page letter that took 2 hours to write and stuffing it into its envelope, I felt so peaceful and almost suffocated with romance. How lucky am I to receive such heartfelt letters? As much as I miss him and wish I could touch him and kiss him, having this distance makes me feel so loved and strengthened in my bond with him. I imagine him writing me in his bunk and I feel so loved that he would choose to write me instead of trying to get that much more sleep. This motivates me to try to be a better wife for him.
I dropped my letter off at the post office, came home, and finally started my run. It was almost noon and I didn’t mind the midday sun on my skin; the passion burning inside me was more intense than this July weather.