Yay! My first blog post! The reason I started this blog is because I wanted to share my experience so far with my husband being going to BCT and AIT as well as our travels and life. More on the travel and life later. Be prepared because it’s going to be a lot of Army posts at first, since that is currently our life.
When my husband (boyfriend at the time) told me he wanted to join the Army, of course I was an emotional wreck. I mean really, does anyone take the news well?? He decided to go National Guard instead of Active Duty, which at least put me on board with him…somewhat… I had no clue what the difference was, so let me tell you.
Active Duty means that your husband, or significant other, will be stationed at a military base when he gets out of AIT (Advanced Individual Training). As far as choosing where they are stationed, they do not get to. They are put where they are needed based on their MOS (Military Occupational Specialty). Depending on where they are stationed, they usually get a little time off after AIT to come home before they move.
In our case, my husband, Brady, is Oklahoma Army National Guard. He goes through the same training that the Army does, but when AIT is over, he gets to come home… for good. He is still in AIT and we have about 9 weeks to go… SUPER EXCITING! Because he is National Guard, he will report 1 weekend a month to his assigned unit for drill. Then, 2 weeks a year he will go to Annual Training. He can still get deployed just like active duty. The biggest difference is, we do not have to move and he can come home and continue on with his civilian job.
The day I dropped Brady off to leave, I was an absolute wreck. We had to drive from North OKC all the way to Norman at 6 in the morning and then I had to fight rush hour traffic back while I was a bawl bag and couldn’t see to drive. It’s a miracle I didn’t get in a wreck. And just for the record, “Daylight” by Maroon 5 will make you bawl like a baby even though you didn’t think it was a sad song.
Brady spent a week in reception when he got to BCT and he was allowed to have his phone during that week (it varies with each platoon and post). Once BCT started, it was dead air. I got a phone call after he had been assigned to his platoon and got SO many letters. I tried to write everyday…just little things like what was going on in the news, etc. I also sent him some pictures that he could hang up in his locker of us and the dogs! About 4 or 5 weeks in, they were allowed to have their phones back on Sundays, but only for about 30 minutes. That was the highlight of my week. Never in my life had I looked forward to the weekend being over so I could have my phone call! Depending on where they are for BCT, you can get on the post’s website and some of them have a Facebook Link for their BCT Class! We got weekly updates on what our soldiers were going through each week and they would usually post a few hundred pictures a week!
The week of his graduation, I booked my hotel room at Fort Sill and was ready to go! We got very lucky because we live in Oklahoma and Fort Sill is in Oklahoma, so I only had about a 4 hour drive. My advice to any of you looking to go to your boyfriend or spouse’s graduation would be to get a hotel on post. They are cheaper rates and it is SO much more convenient than staying off post. You can book your hotel here.
One of the happiest days of my life was getting to see Brady after we were released from our briefing on the do’s and don’ts of Family Day. They were allowed to leave post, but had to be back at their barracks around 8 that night. The time varied for each platoon as the times were assigned by their drill sergeants. We were told the following:
*They could not drive a vehicle
*No Strip Clubs (darn)
*Must remain in ASU’s
*Cannot leave the Lawton area
That pretty much sums it up. Well, thanks for listening to me ramble on! I have so much more I could write but I will spare you the pain until next time…