Tuesday, February 6, 2007

The Big Day

Well, the hubby's promotion ceremony was today. It's kind of hard to believe, and it will probably take us both a little time to get used to it.

He wanted his ceremony to be simple and informal. So we went to lunch at a local restaurant, and we did the promotion there. The Battalion Commander actually made a remark when he was talking that he thought this was the most informal one he'd ever done. P. says, "Mission accomplished!"

So we all ate lunch, and did the promotion afterward. I tried to talk him into wearing BDUs instead of the ACUs so I could pin him right, but he refused. He said I could give him a punch in the chest, though. OK, but not quite the same. So the BN Commander talked for a couple of minutes, talking briefly about P.'s career to this point and then he discussed the significance of this promotion. Then the First Sergeant read the orders and we pinned the new rank...although I guess "pinned" isn't the appropriate term for it anymore. After I replaced the CPT rank with the MAJ rank, I looked at him for a second, he said "Go ahead," and I gave him a good punch in the chest, on the rank. Yeah, it's more symbolic than anything now, but it's tradition. The reaction from his soldiers that were there was pretty funny. I guess they were kind of surprised that I did it. One of them asked me to do it again so they could get a picture. Silly Recruiters.

Another tradition in the Army is when a soldier is promoted, he/she passes the former rank to the person they feel is most deserving of that promotion. So in a "normal" unit, he would have passed it down to a Lieutenant. Well, since he's the only officer in his company, and the only other officer in attendance was the BN Commander who outranks him, he did things a little different. He "offered the CPT Rank up" to the NCO who wanted it. One of the NCOs stood up immediately, and P. tossed it to him. Apparently, this NCO had submitted an OCS packet before but it had never gotten through the system. Hopefully he'll submit another one and something will come of it, if that's what he wants.

Although informal, it was a really nice ceremony. His parents were able to come, as were my mom and her boyfriend. Several of his Recruiters were also there. One of them asked him afterward if this meant we were leaving soon. P. told him no, that we're still going to be here for a while. The look of relief that came over his face made P. feel good.

Afterward, they all went back to work for the afternoon. I took him back to the office and then came home myself. The BN Commander called his cell phone later this afternoon to test him. When P. answered the phone correctly (correct rank), the commander told him that was the first time the promotee had "known his rank." That really made me laugh. The silly things they do...

I've been referring to him affectionately as "Major Pain" all afternoon.

I put together a little slideshow of a few pictures.