A Call: From “United States Government”

25 Jun

I’m going to be brutally honest.  Today sucked.

For once, it wasn’t due to my long hours at work, or the countless annoyances felt from behind my corporate laptop and blackberry.  No.  Today really sucked.  And in the way that you stop and really think about your life.

As we all know by now [or at least I think we all know], I received the dreaded “Dear John” letter from Afghanistan 2 months ago.  Though, I’m not sure it is technically a Dear John letter when the one who remained stateside gets the letter, but that is neither here or there.  I also don’t think it is a surprise to say that it has been a struggle since then, either, but today really takes the cake.

Today, as I was completely and utterly focused on work (the first time in 2 months), I hear my cell phone ringing upstairs.  No longer expecting phone calls at any hour the day, I was comfortable letting the call go without going upstairs to find the phone.  Not 10 minutes later, my house number starts ringing.  Expecting a phone call from my director at the same moment, I reach for the phone – to see “United States Government” on the ID.  Fully expecting a political advertisement (I just love living in the suburbs of DC), I answer the call…..

“A message from your Family Readiness Officer of II MEF Forward, press 1 to connect”… My heart stopped beating, leapt into my throat.  Tears start rolling down my face as I begin to, how do I say this correctly, freak out… Has something happened to him?  Is he injured?  Is he trying to send through an urgent message?  Is he MIA?  Is he alive?  As if the last 2 months had never happened, there I was.  A scared girlfriend of a deployed Marine (or so it felt)- about to throw up with the anxiety as I [not very patiently] wait for the call to connect.

A message.  Paraphrasing here as I was too upset to remember every word.  “Tomorrow’s Family Beach Bash is a go!  Please join the families of II MEF Forward at Onslow Beach… blah blah blah.  We have lifeguards on staff.. blah blah blah.  Blah Blah Blah.”

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?  This guy has GOT to be kidding me!  This Family Readiness Office has the nerve to use the emergency phone tree to notify me about a BEACH BASH?   Am I the only one who thinks this is an inappropriate usage of a contact information for a Marine’s RED (Required Emergency something or about – call in an emergency)?


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