Sunday, May 19, 2013

South Carolina: Part Two - Graduation Day! {Warning: Mushy-girlfriend content}

Joe graduated from basic training on a gorgeously sunny day in South Carolina. It was breezy and the air smelled sweet. Joe's family and I made our way onto the metal bleachers that over-looked Hilton Field where the new soldiers would march to. 

The ceremony was short, but it meant the world to everyone there. To the soldiers it was a declaration that their struggles over the past 10 weeks had not been in vain. To the families it showed that the worry and heartbreak they felt during that time was worth it. 

I have never experienced anything in my life that has made me as proud as I did that day. Seeing Joe in his dress uniform, standing tall, confidence in every movement he made...that was a moment in my life I will never forget. While he hasn't changed as much as I feared he would he has still changed some. The way he carries himself. The way he talks to people. It's as if he calculates every move he makes, and he moves with a purpose. The Army did that to him. :) 

Anywho, the day of his graduation we got to take him off the base! The soldiers were given an off-post pass. That was definitely unexpected.

After the ceremony we went back to our hotel so that some of the group could change. Joe and I sat on the bed while his mom and sister changed their clothes. Laying there in his arms again...I can't even begin to explain how much I missed it. I still do...

After everyone was changed we made our way downstairs, and decided on the place where we'd go to eat for lunch. At lunch we sat outside in the rays of the beautiful South Carolina sun. When lunch came to a close we asked our waitress what she recommended to do around the area. The first thing she mentioned was Finlay Park. 

Can you guess where we ended up next? ;)

Finlay Park -- Columbia, SC. 

The time at Finlay Park was spent well I think. I had wanted some alone time with Joe the whole time that we had been in South Carolina, and except for the short time I had with him the previous evening I hadn't had any. I had this genius plan as we walked behind the rest of our group, and I went with it. I grabbed his hand and took him in the direction opposite of what his family had taken. You can call me selfish all you want for stealing some of his attention away from his family. I don't really care. I had a good hour with him, and it was exactly what the doctor ordered. 

After that we spent some time in downtown Columbia where we visited a few shops and the state capital building. Joe's friends then invited us all to go to eat at a restaurant in Columbia, and although it appeared to be a good idea at the time it ended up not being so. The company was awesome. The service we received, however, was not. I won't dwell on it too much, but we ended up having to rush back to the base with food in styrofoam boxes because they didn't get their food in time after we'd ordered an hour before. :P 

The car ride back to the base sucked. I'm not going to lie. I knew what lied ahead. Goodbye. Fighting back tears I grabbed a tissue out of the package in my purse hoping Joe wouldn't see me. I knew I was going to lose it. We pulled into the parking lot near his barracks, and a flash of emotions swept over me. I was extremely happy that I was able to see him and spend as much time with him as I could. I felt very proud of all he has done. And I was also exceedingly sad because well...goodbyes are always sad. 'Goodbye' is perhaps the most heartbreaking word in the English language. Goodbye eventually came, and just like I expected it hurt. It felt like the end of the world even though I knew it wasn't. I kept telling myself "you'll see him soon", "you will get phone calls", "you will have him home in a matter of months"...but none of those words helped. The tears poured from my eyes like a dam had broken. I held onto Joe so tight I thought I'd smother him, and I kept on telling him how much I didn't want tear stains on his shirt so I was trying hard to keep that from happening. All while that was happening he held me, and it didn't feel like he was holding onto me because he had to...he was doing it because he wanted to. That was when I had an amazing epiphany. He really does LOVE me. He loves me as much as I love him. Craziness!


Saying goodbye is never easy. I watched my man walk away from me, again, and it hurt. It's okay though. I looked around me after he left, and I wasn't the only one crying. There were girlfriends crying. There were mothers crying. I realized I wasn't alone in this. Thank goodness. I don't know if I could bear it if I were.

I love my family and friends so much.

I love Joe more than I thought I could love someone. It's an incredible feeling when you realize you have everything you ever wanted, and it's something you never thought you'd have. I could lose everything; my home, my car, my comfy bed....and I would be fine as long as I have him in my life. <3 

Hope you all enjoyed my mushiness. :P

~ Always Yours,

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

South Carolina: Part 1 - Family Day

Hey there everyone! I'm sorry I haven't blogged in a while. I stopped with my SotD a few days before heading to South Carolina, and it has been a few days since I got back from my trip. 

Let me start by saying how proud I am of Joe. Being able to be a part of his graduation from basic training was one of the most memorable times of my life. :) 

Family Day (May 8th, 2013)

The day that Joe's family and I got to South Carolina we went to bed at 4:30am where we then had to wake up at 6:30am to go to the Fort's family day celebration. For those of you who don't know family day is a day where you and your soldier get to walk around base and spend time with one another. Rob, Ali, Julia, and I got to the base around 8:30am and went to Hilton Field where you meet up with your soldier. Let me tell you...that day gave me goosebumps. I got to watch 50 people from over 20 different countries become US citizens that day..

Anywho, after the little family day ceremony we were told we could go find our soldiers in their platoons. I didn't run like various other families. I didn't push or pull at others to get ahead of them. I made my way to Joe slowly. Walking through people hugging their relatives for the first time in months it finally hit me that I would be seeing my man in just a few short seconds. Joe's family and I made our way through the crowd until his dad came to a stop. He had found his son. 

I walked up to Joe last, and as soon as I got there he took me into his arms and hugged me so tight. It was a feeling I don't think I'll ever forget.

After we did that we walked around the base, and enjoyed all of the wonderful amenities that the fort had to offer. There were a lot of places in the food court we were able to check out. We checked out the PX, and after all of our shopping and such was done we traveled to two of the museums that were on base. While the first museum, a financial museum, wasn't very interesting I thoroughly enjoyed the second museum which was a museum about basic training itself. 

After a long day of riding around in a cramped Mazda 3 we had to drop Joe back off at his barracks. Fortunately we made it back to the area with some time to spare, and his dad casually led Ali and Julia away from us so we could have 20 minutes to ourselves. Let me tell you...after 2 and a half months of being away from one another those 20 minutes felt like 5 minutes. I could have walked around with Joe for an hour and it would have only felt like a sliver of time. 

To be continued... 

~ Always Yours,

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Days 57-62

Day 57

Jamie O'Neal - "Shiver"

A little passion in life never hurt anyone. ;)

Day 58

Bryan Adams, Sting, Rod Stewart - "All For Love"

Day 59

Lea Salonga & Brad Kane - "A Whole New World"

Okay just a little Disney...I swear. 

Day 60

Celine Dion feat. R. Kelly - "I'm Your Angel"

I absolutely love everything by Celine Dion. :) 

Day 61

Van Morrison - "Have I Told You Lately"

I love the Bryan Adams version, but I've already used a song by him in this post. :)

Day 62

Bryan White and Andrea Corr - "Looking Through Your Eyes"

This one isn't Disney! But it's still one of my favorite animated movies... hehe :D

~ Always Yours,

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Phone Calls & Sweet Smiles

Yesterday I got the best surprise I've received so far. I received a phone call from Joe! Now before you go and get as excited as I am I have to tell you that the circumstances in which I got the phone call were unfortunate. However, Joe is almost done with basic training and will be graduating on time with his classmates. 

Just hearing his voice last night makes me that much more anxious to see him again. It is soooo close. We leave in 10 days to make the 13 hour trip to South Carolina, I have 11 days until I see his smiling face, and in just 12 days he will officially be a United States soldier. 

I am so very proud of Joe. When I think of all of the tears I've shed over the time he's spent away my pride in him and in what he's doing overshadows any of the pain that I've felt. We still have 16 weeks to go after he graduates from BCT before he comes home, but I know that if it's anything like the time he's been at basic it will go by quickly. Plus, I get to talk to him more frequently than I did while he was training in SC, so that makes it even easier. ☺

I love my man more than anything in the world. 

~ Always Yours,

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

2 Weeks!

I'm a very excited girl right now. I have two weeks until I get to see my man again. 
I am traveling down to Fort Jackson so I can see Joe graduate from basic training, and I couldn't be more ecstatic. 

May 8th is family day and then May 9th is the day of his graduation. After his graduation he ships off to Fort Leonard Wood where he wil spend the next 16 weeks there for AIT. I am ridiculously proud of Joe. He has already come so far with all of this.

I will say, though, that I am a tad bit nervous about traveling down with his family. I think they're all wonderful people, and I truly enjoy their company, but I'm slightly scared that the close quarters for 4 days will drive them, or myself for that matter, crazy. If there is one thing I want to avoid it's Joe's family not liking me. 

Oh, and a further update on the dress situation...
I found three dresses. I'm going to take two of them down to SC with us, and then I will leave the 3rd (and nicest one) home for when he returns from AIT in September. 

Having Joe gone has taught me a lot. I can be independent while being in a relationship. I think that's one of the things that has been my problem in past relationships. I always lose myself within the relationship. I lose my independent nature. But that's not the case with this one; especially now that he's in the Army NG. 

~ Always Yours,

Day 56 -- "6 Months"

Day 56

Hey Monday - "6 Months"


"You're the direction I follow to get home
When I feel like I can't go on, you tell me to go
And it's like I can't feel a thing without you around
And don't mind me if I get weak in the knees
'cause you have that effect on me, you do

Everything you say
Every time we kiss, I can't think straight
But I'm okay
And I can't think of anybody else
Who I hate to miss as much as I hate missing you

Months going strong now, and no goodbye
Unconditional, unoriginal
Always by my side
Meant to be together
Meant for no one but each other
You love me, I love you harder so

Everything you say
Every time we kiss, I can't think straight
But I'm okay
And I can't think of anybody else
Who I hate to miss as much as I hate missing you

So please, give me your hands
So please, give me a lesson on how to steal, steal a heart
As fast as you stole mine, as you stole mine

Oh and everything you say
Every time we kiss, I can't think straight
But I'm okay
And I can't think of anybody else
Who I hate to miss as much as I hate missing you

So please, give me your hands
So please, just take my hand.

~ Always Yours,

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Day 55 -- "Like I Am"

Day 55

I swear every day I feel like I find a song that I wish I had written because it's exactly how I feel.
I hope you all enjoy this song as much as I do. 

Rascal Flatts - "Like I Am"


"Lying here with you 
I watch you while you sleep 
The dawn is closing in 
With every breath you breathe 

I can feel the change 
The change you`ve made in me 
But will I ever see 
All the things you see in me 

When you say that I`m one of a kind 
Baby, I don`t see it but you believe 
That I`m so strong and true, I promise you 
I`ll try to be that kind of man 
Because you love me like I am 

When it comes to love 
I may not know the rules 
But there`s one thing I know 
My heart belongs to you, just you 

(Repeat Chorus) 

You show me you love me 
With a fire that burns deep inside 

(Repeat Chorus Twice) 

- I am 
I`ll never understand 
I don`t think I`ll ever understand 
Why you love me 
Why you love me just like I am."

~ Always Yours,