O Captain my Captain

That was us. We were those kids. College finals finished one week, vows exchanged the next. And the soap-scribbled "just married" not yet worn off the car window by the time he caught the bus to basic training.

When I saw him march the graduation formation six weeks later under sultry Texas sky, I swore he looked taller. And neater. As in don't freak out, honey, but I believe in ironing my tee shirts now, neater. (This proved to be a short-lived habit. It didn't take long before he returned to the way of his species and learned how to throw his dirty clothes on the floor--just feet from the hamper--like a proper man).

To say it's been a long road is like saying Caed had a smidgen bit of baby fat at five months old.

See? It's been a LONG road. (And aren't those the most adorable cankles you've ever seen?)

I could tell you the whole long story of the last 15 years, about the winding road to (and through) medical school, his desert detour, the setbacks, the loss. I could tell you about the long hours and the wondering what the heck we were thinking when we headed down this crazy path.

But I'd rather just skip to the present and tell you what happened last night.

My brother in law, home just days ago from Afghanistan, says, "Repeat after me..."

My husband solemnly (and smilingly) swears to serve faithfully. They salute.

"Congratulations Sir!" my army brother says.
"Aim high!" my air force husband says.

And then someone asks, "So will you go by Captain or Doctor?"
And he says, "I'll just go by Myles."

And if this were Hollywood, that would be our cue to hop up on a desk and salute, "O Captain my Captain!" But since I didn't have a desk, and this is Ohio we're talking about, we all just laughed and hugged and high fived and asked, "Now who wants pizza?"

We used to be those kids--the ones sporting the frizzy red hair and the Airman Basic blues, the Goliath dreams and the David odds. Now it's mostly scrubs and straight hair (thank you, pregnancy). Now the long way is the customary way, and nothing is quite as familiar or quite as astonishing as His grace in bringing us this far, as His grace in leading us home.

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