Mark encouraged me in this with a comment he made this past weekend. He read the last update I'd sent out about him and said how well written it was. "I was really impressed! You could write a book!" I was surprised since I've never thought of my writing skills as good and since he's never mentioned anything about it before. So I thought, "Well, since he thinks its good and interesting to read then why not pursue it a little more and keep up on my blog!" And with twins on the way and Mark going through Pararescue training, I'd like some of this time recorded. So there is my explanation for jumping back in the blogging world.
August 28th and 29th (Saturday and Sunday) I was able to drive down and see Mark for a second weekend in a row! The intense training starts on Monday, and he was definitely "in the zone," focused, and ready for Monday to be here. I was amazed by his determination, his mental grit, his do or die attitude. Of course I knew he was strong physically and mentally, but he was way beyond what I expected. It makes me just swell up with pride for him when I think about all he's accomplished and what he is setting out to do. I still stop and am amazing at what an awesome husband I have....I've loved every second of being married to him, even the rough times, because I just never realized how close you can become emotionally, physically, and spiritually to one person. And now to have two little ones on the way....the blessing is overwhelming and every time I stop to think about it, tears come to my eyes. A wretched sinner like me, deserving not a single breath or second of life, and yet God has washed me clean and given me way above all that I could ask or imagine!
"Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen." Ephesians 3:20-21
This weekend was full of preparation for Mark's training (which started at 0330 this morning!) so we ran errands, got supplies, prepared his gear....it was so neat to see all that. To help him prepare and to see his new dorm, the training area, a small glimpse into this new phase.
Mark sent me this photo of his new room (I can't go in the dorm). There are three guys to a room and its way nicer than his basic training accomodations of course!
Saturday afternoon, the PJs practicing some water confidence before training starts on Monday. Mark is across the pool, sitting on the edge with his hands on his hips. (cell phone photos aren't the best quality, but I was already the odd one out being pregnant at a military pool so the last thing I was going to do was pull out my Nikon D40! haha)
Left to right: Marzilli, Driggers, Schnell, and Snyder (this guy is Mark's roommate). All three of these guys were in Mark's flight at basic training. They had to cut out the stencils and stencil their names on their training shirts. Those shirts and shorts (or a speedo for swimming) are what they wear a lot of training days. They will also have training in their ABUs (camo).
This is Mark's "radio." They give each guy a rock (about the size of Mark's fist) and they can write whatever they want on it. They have to keep it with them at all times (like they would their radio once they are out of training). Mark's added more to his "radio" now....the "Jolly Green feet" have a story behind them. From Wikipedia, "Many pararescuemen tattoo green footprints on their body. This tradition arose during the Vietnam War, at which point in time the most commonly used helicopter was the H-3 Sea King, nicknamed the Jolly Green Giant due to its enormous size and olive drab exterior. Members of the 40th Aerospace Rescue and Recover Squadron, stationed at Nakhon Phanom Royal Thai Navy Base, were the first to receive such tattoos on their buttocks in 1971." That is of course a quick explanation, but it you google it you can read the whole story. There are green feet painted in different places all over Lackland AFB, although you wouldn't notice them unless you were looking. Whenever the guys run past them (and they never run over them) they yell "Hooyah green feet!" It's a really respected symbol.
I have more photos, but no time to post....maybe a good post for tomorrow :)