Sunday, October 18, 2015

Phone Call!!

Today was Liberty Sunday for the recruits.....sorry, MARINES now. They finished the Crucible yesterday, meaning they got their Eagle, Globe, and Anchor, meaning they're Marines! It's fantastic! But, today was Liberty Sunday, meaning the new Marine's got to call home. And, I got an 8 minute phone call!

Eek! I'm ecstatic! Now, 8 minutes may not sound like a lot but it was a lot. We talked a little bit and it was just nice to hear his voice again. It was fantastic. So, basically, this is now the phone call went.

The phone rang once and it was his mom, trying to get a three way call set up. I dove for my phone and answered, saying "Hello? Hello?" over and over again. But, I couldn't hear anything and I didn't know if they could hear me either. So, I get hung up on and his mom calls me, saying that I missed the call. I told her that I didn't and that it just didn't work. She said,"He kept calling your name over and over to try to hear you." So, we talked a little more and then hung up on each other, hoping I would get another call. I was shaking and anxious and excited and scared.

So, my phone rings again, this time a South Carolina number. I answer it, saying "Hello?!", a bit frantically. And, he responds, "Is this who I think this is?" and I immediately freeze and my heart is beating out of my chest and I feel like crying and I say "Yeah," and he says, "This is Madison, isn't it?" and I say "Yeah. Hi baby," and he says "Hi baby" back.

We....well, I say we, he did most of the talking..... talked about the Crucible  and boot camp and what's he's been up to. We talked about travel plans and what he was going do when he gets off the island, which he is so ready for.

I told him, "I'm shaking right now" and he asked "Are you about to cry?" and I say "Probably. Shut up," and he laughs and says "Don't cry baby" and I laugh, because I'm being silly. I say "I miss you" and he says "I miss you too" and it just pulls at my heart strings and makes me happy to know that he missed me too.

He asked if I had any stories and I told him "I stayed up until 2 playing board games" and he said "Oh, only two? Try having night watch baby", making me laugh and blush.

So, we get to talking about nicknames and he said "You can probably expect a lot more cussing. That's all we've heard since we've been on the island". I, of course, had to laugh at that. His friend/brother/rack mate was in the background, trying to be the third wheel in our conversation. (Apparently, a lot of Marines cried while talking to their girlfriends and moms, so he was probably trying to keep the conversation from getting sappy).

But, we got to talking about nicknames and how everyone is basically called b*tch on the island and then I get hung up on. He only got 15 minutes and he spent the first half talking to his dad. So, we didn't get to say goodbye or even "I love you" but that's okay, because I got to talk to my Marine. And, it was amazing.

So, girls, if your dating a military man and he only gets a five minute or even a two minute phone call, cherish that time with him, because it's all the time he has. Don't be disappointed that it's not longer. Be happy that you got a call.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Love Letters!

So, when your boyfriend is going through boot camp, girls, you get the pleasure of writing and receiving love letters. Well, hopefully. And, girls, let me tell you, this is not some "Dear, John" BS. It's just not. You won't be getting a letter every week; you'll be lucky to get two letters a month. And, you won't be able to hold up a conversation about anything, because he'll be busy and want to tell you what's going on with him. Plus, he'll be cut off from the rest society; he won't know that the new Hotel Transylvania movie came out. 

So, if I haven't already crushed your hopes and dreams, let me tell you how and what to write in love letters. 

1. ALWAYS stay positive! Well, at least write positive things to him. Yes, it's hard when you see a couple kissing and you suddenly have an ache in your chest to do that with your recruit. Yes, it's hard to get out of bed in the morning and yes, it's hard to go to sleep at night. But, you can't tell him any of that. He has to know that you're okay at home, so you have to write positive thoughts to him, even if you're at your lowest. I wrote my recruit a very sad letter and all he could say was "Baby don't cry. I'll be there soon". I should have NEVER sent him that letter, because he needed to focus on his training, not on me back home. I really regret it, so girls, keep your letters positive, even if you're heart is broken in a million little pieces, because you're his backbone. He needs you to stay strong and to keep him going with positive, confident, encouraging letters. So, no sappy letters. Stay positive! 

2. Send pictures! But, ladies, NO NUDES! None, nah dah, zip. Pop culture has put it in our heads that it's okay to send nude pictures to our boyfriends in the military so they don't forget what we look like. But, this is a big no-no, especially while the recruit is at boot camp! It counts as pornographic material and your recruit could get in major trouble, which is never good. But, do send him pictures of what your doing. Boys are very visual, so they have a better time understanding with picture then just by reading it. If you went out to the club with your girls, take a picture. If you worked out at the gym and lost six pounds, take a picture. If you went out to lunch with his mom, take a picture. Take pictures and make a collage and print them out. Even if they're in black and white, he'll still like seeing what you're up to. Plus, it saves him time because he doesn't have to read about it. Plus, he gets to see your beautiful face. So, definitely send him pictures, but again, no nudes! 

 3. Get creative with it! Sending letters can be a lot more fun if you incorporate arts and crafts or anything that will make him smile. You can write him a knock knock joke. You can make the ABC's of how much you love him. You can send him a hug, with a picture of your arms held out on one side of a piece paper and your arms around yourself on the other side. You can put on the reddest lipstick and cover the entire page with kisses! (Just not on the envelope). You can make him a little eight page book for him to read. You can send him doodles. Get creative! It will definitely make him smile and laugh when he sees it. And, it will make him feel special by how much work you put into your letter. So, girls, get creative! 

4. Print out labels and send them to him. Trust me, neither of you want to write out the long address when he's a boot camp. So, do both of you a favor and print out labels, so he can just stick it on the envelope and send his letter to you faster. 

5. Only read his letter a max of three times. And, there's a reason behind this. At my lowest point, I got into the habit of checking my mailbox four times a day to see if there was a letter. And, if there was a letter, the rest of my day was an emotional roller coaster. There's the beginning where you jump up and down and are happy and read his letter to see what he says. But, as I keep reading it four or five more times, I realized how much I miss him and I would have an emotional breakdown and go into my crying phase and the "I want my boyfriend!" phase. So, ladies, yes, read his letters multiple times, but don't read them to the point where they become the opposite of what he intended to do. Don't get to the point where they are more harmful to you then they are good for you. 

6. Be patient. Again, I got into the habit of checking my mailbox four times a day, because I was really impatient. I wanted to hear from him and see what he was doing and everything. But, girls, the mailing system sucks! It takes them four days to get it to where he's stationed and then the military inspects it for another two and then they give it to him and he may not have time to write a reply. So, it'll take a solid week for him to receive your letter and send back a reply. And, then to get his reply it has to go through the system all over again. So, be patient. 

7. Always be sending letters! Even if you get busy, put aside some time to write a letter to your recruit and send it off to him. Even if he can't reply, he still gets them and they love to get mail. Don't try to sync up with him and be sending letter only after you get his reply. You'll end up with maybe four if you do that. So, keep sending him letters. Never stop sending letters. 

8. Keep the letters! I really shouldn't have to say this one. But, yes, keep all the letters he sends you. You'll need to reread them sometimes when you're feeling sad and wanna hear someone calling you "beautiful" or "baby" or even "pretty thing". Keep them in a box where they are easy to access but to where they're not glaring you in the face. I put mine in my jewelry box. So, try to keep all your letters. You'll be able to read them later down the road and it'll be a symbol of your love for each other. 

9. Share your letters with other people! Let other people read what he wrote you, so they can better understand what you're going through. I get a letter and I read it, then I pass it to my friends Ashley and Ethan. I hear they're opinion on it and get some advice if there's any sensitive topics. It also let's them be there for me, if I start breaking down. They can hold me and be like "Look. He called you beautiful here" and try to make me feel better by pointing out the positives of the letter. So, don't be afraid to share your letters.

10. End your letters with Semper Fi, but only if he does it first. "Semper Fidelis" is the motto of the Marines and it means "Always Faithful". You come to appreciate and live by those words as you go through waiting for him, especially when he writes "Semper Fi means always faithful, so Semper Fi to you". And, he'll appreciate it too, if you end your letters with "Semper Fi, Love, ________". It's always how I end my letters and he really likes it. He knows what those words mean and he knows that you are staying true and loyal to him by putting that in your letters. So, don't be scared to use the Marine motto. 

Well, that's it for today. Hopefully I have given you some awesome tips on how to write love letters to your recruit. Bye! 

Wednesday, October 7, 2015


So, as I said in my About Me post, my boyfriend is currently at boot camp, about to take on the Crucible, which means he's almost done (16 more days). But, the past 72 days (and counting down!) has been an emotional roller coaster. So, here's a little advice!

1. Spend as much time as possible before he leaves! This is so important! I have a hard time expressing emotions, so for me, I was constantly pushing him away, to try to save myself from the heartbreak of him leaving. DON'T DO THIS!! I learned this the hard way. I now regret all those days I pushed him away, because that could have been five more times he would have held me or five more times he would have kissed me. Girls, during this time, it's okay to be clingy. Spend every waking moment with him before he leaves (unless you have school or work; in that case, work around that schedule). He needs to know that you love him and you'll stay faithful and the best way to do this is by your actions. So, spend so much time with him before he leaves.

2. You're going to cry the first day. And, the first week. And, multiple times after that. Get used to having tissues in your room. My boyfriend and I have been dating each other for four years (high school sweethearts). So, when he had to leave on that Thursday and head out, hell yeah I cried. Well, I happened to have work that day so I had to stay strong and hold it in until I got home. But, yeah. I cried. A lot. And, girls, that's okay. It's actually really weird if you don't cry. The tears started when I got home and he sent me one last text before his phone got disconnected. I read that text over and over and the tears just wouldn't stop coming. My eyes were almost swollen shut the next day. So, girls, it's okay to cry and you will. I promise. 

3. Write him letters! Please! In this world of technology and innovation that makes communication so much easier, recruits get stripped of that and are reduced to snail mail as their only form of communication. Teenagers might be really turned off by the thought of this, but send him letters. I'll write a whole other post of what to write in letters and how to write them. 

4. You're gonna feel alone. And, you're not. Trust me, honey, you're not alone. There's 2.7 million people serving in our military, meaning there's, if half of them are married, 1.3 million military spouses who all are going through/have gone through what you are experiencing. So, don't isolate yourself, saying "People don't understand." Civilians won't understand; but, MilSO's (Military Significant Others) will. So, join a Facebook group and connect with other people. It's been the best thing for me. Figure which company and platoon  your boyfriend is going into and find the corresponding Facebook group. I didn't do that the first 2 months he was gone and I only hurt myself, because I felt alone and like I was the only one going through this. But, I wasn't. And, plus, you get a lot more information as everyone shares letters and tells you stuff you need to know. So, go out there and find other MilSO's. 

5. Keep yourself busy. This is a bit of a no brainer and can be read on every single military spouse site. But, that's because it works. You don't need to be moping around all day like "I want my boyfriend." So, find distractions. For me, it's: my college work, marching band, Area Council, Anthropology Club, working out, making crafts, reading books, and community service projects. Find something, anything, to take your mind off of him. 

6. Talk to his family. This one might sound weird, but his mom is going through the same thing you are. So, talk to her about it. Get connected with his family. They all feel your pain. They all experience the same thing. So, talk to his family and support them, as they will support you. 

7. Keep a countdown. This really put my mind at ease as I go and erase the number 17 on my white board and put the number 16 instead. It's a "take it day by day mentality". And, sometimes, that's all it takes. When I'm crying, I look at the board and think "It'll be okay. He'll be here in 32 days." and it calms me down to think about him here with me. And, get creative with it. I see countdowns where they put Reese cups in a jar and eat one everyday until they're none left. 

8. Make him something special while he's gone. Crucible candles are great (unless you're not allowed candles in the dorm like me), so work on that or something special while he's away. For me, everyday I sit down and write him a little note of what happened to me today or how I felt or how I missed him. Then, I put in an index card box with all the other notes. He can read these when he gets back and see what I've been up and see how I've felt. I've also handmade him a picture frame with a photo of him and me in it so he can take it to MCT and MOS when he has to leave again. 

9. Breathe. Everything will be okay. When he's a month into boot camp and you haven't heard any news, breathe. When he tells you his DI has been a jerk and wrecking house and you worry about that, breathe. When he tells you that his bottom wisdom teeth got yanked out in less than a minute and they only numbed it and let him rest for a day and then sent him back on duty, breathe. Inhale and exhale. Everything will be okay. And, let me tell you, no news is good news, because it means everything it going exactly as the DI's have planned. 

10. Pray. This may sound childish but definitely pray for your recruit. He needs strength and support almost as badly as he needs oxygen. He needs you and your prayers to help him get through one of the most difficult periods in his new life. And, also, honey, pray that God gives you strength. It's hard, I know. But, soon, your recruit will be a Marine and will be coming back to you. So, put yourself into God's hands and pray. 

And, that's all for today. I hope these give good advice about what to do while your boyfriend is at boot camp and I hope it maybe made you smile or laugh. Keep the faith and breathe and remember: no news is good news. Bye! 

HELLO! - About me

Hello everyone! My name is Madison and I'm a freshman at SIU of Carbondale (go Salukis!). I love to read and write and play video games. I love the marching band and I like to study (which sounds weird). 

But, over all these things, I love my boyfriend even more. He is currently on Parris Island about to take on the Crucible, so all my prayers go up to him.

I started this blog to help me cope with all my emotions, with him being gone. While I am super excited for my Marine to come home, I'm also very sad because he will have to leave again to complete MCT and MOS training. It's a bitter sweet feeling. The past three months he has been at boot camp has been very hard on both of us. I wish someone would have warned me before he left. 

So, that's what I'm here to do! For all future Marine or military girlfriends, hopefully I can give lots of advice. For current Marine or military girlfriends, fiances and wives, hopefully you'll sympathize and we can band together and support each other. Remember: you're not alone! 

So, let's get started!