I'm sure I've been here 125. I'm not sure I have 60 days left. For those who have deployed before, this needs no explanation, especially for Randy S. For those of you who have not deployed, I'll do my best to explain this precise, clear, seamless process.
1. Take the "Proceed" date from your orders.
2. Add the number of days of your tour length.
3. Add 3 days for overlap to train your replacement.
4. Add 10 days to allow for travel contingencies.
The resulting calender day from this equation is the day you MUST BE GONE by. Of course, my replacement is scheduled to arrive 1 day prior to my MUST BE GONE date. Which means there is no way I'm getting out of here on time, with the required training period and travel times. However, my friendly local readiness officers have officially petitioned for a change in my replacement's arrival date. I'm actually optimistic (Randy S. is shaking his head at my optimism, I'm sure) that his arrival date will be moved up and I will get back home at the originally appointed time. Fortunately, I'm pretty sure that whatever day I return home is the date that God originally appointed, so I can't really argue too much with that.
The days have been passing steadily. My clinical practice has slowed a bit, but I've managed to do about 40 cases so far. I've been able to busy myself with other projects here including our mobile surgical team stuff. Oh, and Mustache March.
As most deployers know, there is some strange appeal to growing a mustache- something most men, and almost all women (except perhaps my mother) agree is a very odd fashion statement. But, still, we deployed men feel a calling, a destiny, a magnetism, as the moon tugging gently at the oceans, toward dawning this facial hair. Our Med Group has even managed to somehow make it a fundraising event for the Wounded Warriors project. Each participating mustache grower receives votes which each cost a nickel. There are three categories: Biggest mustache, Most disturbing mustache, and most "Wannabe" mustache. (I think the last category is for the 19 yr-olds here who still haven't had their testosterone surge yet...).
|This is the flyer I sent out to make sure everyone understood the regulations for proper Mustache Wear.|
In case you can't remember what I look like without a mustache, here I am with the help of a couple jet engines.
I'll post mustache updates at scheduled intervals. I know you're on the edge of your seats.
I know it's been several weeks since I've blogged. I've missed a lot more than you've missed. Over the last few weeks:
1. A. broke her arm, and will probably lose her first tooth anytime now.
2. S. officially changed his name to Batman. He also got his first (cap)gun. (Thanks Cory for introducing firearms to my family).
3. little E. has gotten somehow even cuter, with long hair, and has learned to say her "K" sounds.
4. big E. has managed to make me even more proud of her, and fall even more in love with her from 8,000 miles away.
I'm so ready to get home. Counting the days- however many there are.
"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10