On Monday July 12 I released my baby boy into Uncle Sam's care. He's one step closer to fulfilling what he believes is God's calling on his life to serve his country and fellow soldiers on the front lines in Afghanistan.
Driving up to the gate at RTI is when it really began to hit me. (Dustin was in driving his girlfriend's car in front of me.)
We were yet unaware of the change in his orders. We thought he'd be shipping out to Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri but instead he received orders to report to Fort Sill in Oklahoma. (This is actually good news to us since it increases the likelihood we might be able to see him during brief visitation hours after he gets out of "Red Phase.") He'll complete his AIT at Fort Leonard Wood and will hopefully get to see his best friend Miles Holladay some time during that overlap.
None of us was crying until Samantha lost it (and so did we as we watched Dustin tenderly console her.) Every one of us had tears in our eyes--even Dustin. (The last time I remember seeing Dustin with tears in his eyes was when I mercilessly beat him at Monopoly when he was only five years old.)
Dustin was able to pack every personal possession he could carry into this single back pack from which he would live over the next four months.
Everyone asks me if I'm "okay" with all of this (as his mother.) I have to be. God loaned this precious baby boy into our care for a while. All along his father and I have prayed that we would be used by Him to prepare this young man for service in His Kingdom. We trust God who holds our son in His loving hands--the very God in whom Dustin has placed his own trust. We claim Psalm 91 for Dustin:
1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”
3 Surely he will save you from the fowler's snare and from the deadly pestilence.
4 He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
5 You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day,
6 nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday.
7 A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you.
8 You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked.
9 If you make the Most High your dwelling— even the Lord, who is my refuge—
10 then no harm will befall you, no disaster will come near your tent.
11 For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways;
12 they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
13 You will tread upon the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent.
14 “Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
15 He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With long life will I satisfy him and show him my salvation.”
Posted on Tue, July 13, 2010
by Andrea Decker filed under