And... off he goes... again.
We just finished a great two weeks with the kid. We picked him up from San Antonio on the 14th and dropped him off at the SA Airport this AM for his return to Germany.
Every time we spend time with him I am more impressed with him as a person and as a man. He has struggled a bit over the past two years and is coming out of those struggles nicely. He finally has a useable new tooth after nearly a year of going through extraction, bone grafts, anchor installation, etc.... This one is temporary but fully functional. His confidence is coming back. He has been working out like a fiend and looks great. He hit the gym nearly every day he was with us.
He has recieved several awards and significant recognition for his performance at work. During his two year depressive period (my words not an official Dx) he has been questioning his abilities among other things. He did not feel he was ready for promotion so he did not study for the E-6 exam. He got his scores. He missed the promotion score by 2 points. So... now he is all pumped about re-testing in April and indicates that he will study and prepare. I certainly hope he does. In fact, I am confident that he will.
He gets his durable fake tooth installed in two weeks. That should end his tooth adventure that started when he ate a curb when he crashed his bike when he was 8yo. He also has a plan, one he actually showed me, for completing his AS by mid January and has his plan mapped out for finishing his BS. I am cautiously hopeful that he will make that happen. However, past behavior being the best predictor of future performance............ we shall see.
We spent the 22-26th with my parents. We all had a great time. His mom and I got him a new MS Surface and some other stuff but the gift of the year award goes to my mom. She made him a set of place mats, napkins and coasters out of his old uniforms. He teared up when he opened those. He knows the effort she puts into her quilting, embroidering, sewing, etc... Dad got him a North Face down jacket that he really likes. However, he refuses to give up the ancient coat he stole from me. I bought that coat whie his mom and I were dating. He ascribes some magical status to that ugly RED/BLUE/BLACK monstosity. His friends give him crap about it.. I think he wears it just to irritate them.
He loves his Deema and Deepa and they love him very much.
We drove from Houston to San Antonio after work yesterday, had a late dinner at one of our favorite restaurants in the world, and checked into our hotel. We had some laughs before we finally turned off the lights and then got up at the butt crack of dawn to get him to the airport. We stopped for breakfast (Cracker Barrel) on our way to the airport for his final meal request before returning to Germany.
We dropped him at the departures curb, had our final hugs and goodbyes, I got back in the car... and he and his mom had a final few tearful moments together before he headed inside. Three tearful hours of driving later my bride dropped me off at my office and she went to hers. I just drove and held her hand. What else could I do? She misses her spawn.
We had a great Christmas with the kid.
I am proud to be his dad. I love him very much.
Happy New Year STalkers!!!