My Friend Sunny
I’ve been speaking of my friend that was recently deployed to Iraq, and thought it only fair I give him a name. Sunny is a private type guy, and being in the army I thought it was safer to use a nickname to protect the innocent.
Sunny and I met almost a year ago while playing a certain war type game online (no, not that one, I’m not shelling out money for it!). Actually I was attacking him just as he joined my team. We became friends, and it wasn’t long before he told me he was in the reserves as a United States Army MP and would be leaving the next year for Iraq. Next year sounded far away, so I didn’t think too much of it. What I really knew of the military experience could fit on your pinky finger.
He’s a chocoholic who has a soft spot for animals. To show you his sense of humour, when he found out Dusty was apparently born with no testicles, Sunny gave him a new name – Ballzack. He always asks now how Ballzack is doing.
I was sad when he left for training camp, as he was not allowed to tell me when he would deploy, any day could be the day he would be gone. There were rough days, where I think he questioned the entire decision, he was exhausted and missed home. But when he injured himself, he didn’t fess up it still kind of hurt, because he didn’t want to be held back from being deployed with his unit. I learned quickly that when you’re in the military, you’re never really off duty. Where else do you have a boss calling a 11pm surprise meeting?
If there is one thing that he has taught me, its patience. Something that everyone who knows me ribs me about. One heated conversation I remember vividly. I admit I wasn’t handling him having to leave all so well. When he said it was simple, I got angry. It was then he said something that I remind myself often, “It’s not easy, but it IS simple – I have NO choice”. I smartened up a lot after that. There was no point getting angry at something that was not going to change, and it was doing nothing but making it worse.
The week he left for Iraq I must have checked my email 20 times a day. After almost a week came the short message that he was okay, and safe. I felt like I had been holding my breath the entire time! Even after 12-18 hours of work in 125F heat he will use his internet connection to say goodnight, he is safe, and hopes to talk soon.
Today, after 4 or 5 days of not having much chance to talk, he finally had a bit of time. It didn’t take long before he asked what was bothering me. When I told him I was tired and cranky, I earned myself a new nickname for the rest of the conversation: Cranky Pants. He said it would do one of two things: 1. Piss me off or 2. Make me laugh. Thankfully it was the latter!
Sunny’s friends call him a super hero because he’s always willing to help people out. It’s no surprise at all that after his tour he wants to become a police officer.
Speaking of after his tour, he hopes to come up to Canada to meet me, The Hubs, and ‘Ballzack’ afterwards. I think even our hottest summer would be a break from the heat for him right now! Sometimes when we’re out The Hubs will point out places I should show him (it’s really cute), I should start keeping a list;) Anytime I mention my soy ice cream he gags, so we’ve decided we’re going to set up a taste test to see if he can actually tell the difference.
Right now I hope for quiet year, and Sunny coming home safe.