Alright y’all- I’m about to get all sappy on you.
When Vincent enlisted and we decided to get married, I had all these grand illusions of being a Marine wife. I’d be leaving Columbia and starting fresh in a new town. I would get to meet people from all over the country. I would get to wake up to my oh-so-handsome husband every day.
It. Would. Be. Grand.
Then I got there. I don’t mean to rag on Jacksonville/Camp Lejuene- but it kinda sucked. It was hard to meet girls that I got along with- mostly because I never really had any super close girl friends - just got along better with guys – and (if I am speaking frankly, which I am) most girls my age up there were super immature.
And I wanted a BFF (yes. I said BFF). I wanted one soooooo bad. I wanted someone to go shopping with, out to dinner with, hang out with and do nothing. I wanted a BFF and I imagined that I would find that in the military wife community.
Then I met Poon and Ammie.
Poon’s name is actually Lamphone. I had NO idea how to pronounce that and instead of asking her (like a normal person would do) I made up my own pronunciation. I pronounced her name lam-fa-knee. It was pretty embarrassing when I learned it was pronounced lam-poon. :)
I actually “met” her in an online chat/bulletin board. Her husband had graduated from boot camp 3 weeks after Vincent left for boot camp. We started emailing back and forth and I found myself opening up to her. A lot.
Here’s the thing. We were in VERY different spots in life. She’s 8 years older, mother to two girls, and from a small (I mean like 300 people small) town in Iowa. I was a senior in high school, kids certainly weren’t on my radar, and Columbia ain’t that small.
It was a slow process of becoming friends but meeting her is definitely in my top 5 of most awesome things that have happened to me. Ever. We have very different personalities but we make it work. We can do hang out and do nothing and it’s not weird. Neither of us gets offended when the other one gets distracted or has to end a call in the middle of a rant. We’ve never gotten in a fight and I think that is because we just understand each other and accept each other’s differences. I’m talking like Meredith and Cristina in Grey’s Anatomy soul-mate type thing. Yea- you should be jealous.
January of 2011, her and her family packed it up and moved back to Iowa after her husband got out. The day they left is in my 5 top of the worst moment in my life- I mean it ranks up there with my dad’s death and Vincent deploying. I haven’t seen her in over a FIFTEEN MONTHS. It sucks but we talk almost every day but tomorrow I am flying to Iowa to see her!! ACK!
Last photo together before they drove off. January 2011
And five days from now I will be in St. Louis to see Ammie!
Now Ammie is the funniest person I have ever met. Literally. She is a mother of three, fly by the seat of her pants, tell it like it is type person and I love it. I met Ammie the day Vincent came home from Iraq. She was at Poon’s house and when we stopped by to say “hi” we ended up hitting it off. She is my real-life Lucy Ricardo!
Random side note: her son Isaiah was the FIRST newborn I had ever held. He was like 4 hours old and Ammie threw him in my arms and was like “you want to hold him?” She’s a hoot.
We would randomly go out to Wal-Mart or a pawn shop at 9PM just because we wanted too. Our relationship is crazy, sporadic, and just plain fun. I miss her like crazy and I am still trying to get Vincent to maybe apply for jobs in St. Louis when he graduates.
We don’t talk everyday but we have that kind of relationship where we don’t talk for 2 months then call each other and stay on the phone for 2 hours and it’s like we haven’t missed a beat.
When her family packed up and left in April 2011, I drove out of her neighborhood thinking that this whole goodbye thing kinda blows. I mean my 2 closest friends leaving within 4 months of each other is just cruel.
Our last photo together before they left. April 2011.
On a totally awesome and random side note, Karrie and daughter, Kaelyn, will be coming down for the day when I am in St. Louis. HOLY HOTCAKES! Could I get any luckier!?
I met Karrie when she was engaged to Adam. Adam and Vincent were in the same truck in Iraq and Vincent was asked to be a groomsman in their wedding. So I Facebooked her. We don’t talk as much anymore but I am so grateful that I met her and got to know her!
Either way you cut it, my grand idea of being a military wife wasn’t like I had imagined. I met a lot of great (and weird) people while in Jacksonville and it was nice to finally have an identity outside of Columbia. But the best part of being in the military community was meeting these three ladies and their families.
SO! Tomorrow I will board a plane to Iowa and finally, after 15 months, get to give my bestest friend in the world the biggest hug. And next Wednesday, I will have a drink with my Ams in St. Louis.
Don’t worry, you’ll get to see photos!