I was pulling guard duty at the gate when a call came in from my Sgt. The conversation went as follows:
Me: "Gate House, Corporal Lovell speaking. How may I help you sir/ma'am?"
Sgt. Jones: "Corporal Lovell, this is Sgt. Jones."
Sgt Jones was my favorite Sergeant. He was a good man. He had a nickname for me, "Mouse." Why mouse? Because I was usually quiet and introverted. I could tell he liked me, too. We got along pretty good. After the war I found out that he was diagnosed with Gulf War Syndrome. I saw him on the news being interviewed about it. I hated to hear about it, especially about someone in my own unit.
Me: "Yes sir?"
Sgt. Jones: "You're being deployed."
Sgt. Jones: "Yes."
Me: "Ok, now what?"
Sgt. Jones: "Be in formation tomorrow at 0800 hrs."
It was a short conversation but not a lot needed to be said. I was expecting it (since I volunteered myself) so it wasn't a surprise. I sat there for a minute as I took it all in. I'd be lying if I didn't admit my heart skipped a beat. Did I regret signing up? Not for a second. But my mindset of volunteering was based on motivation, while my mindset of being told I was going to war was set on the worse case scenario. Regardless, this was it and I had to let my family know that I was being deployed.
“Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.”