I had the honor and privilege of pinning his gold bar to his uniform at his commissioning ceremony the week before we got married in 2004.
And although that man knows how much I love ceremonies and parties and occasions to celebrate the boy who makes my blood run red, white and blue, Supersoldier has somehow dodged my presence (and his first ever promotion party!) at every rank change since.
I missed his first promotion. (He was deployed.)
I missed his second promotion. (He was deployed.)
I didn't even get to see his first "demotion" when he had to take a constructive credit and move down a rank in order to attend Army Physician Assistant school in 2010. (Although I DID get to see him explain in commissary parking lots to soldiers who were once his who now outranked him that no, he didn't get anyone killed. He just attended P.A. school.)
And when he finally moved back up to his old rank for the second time, he told me I was out of my ever-loving mind if I thought I was throwing him a party to get BACK to the rank he'd already held for three years ... and was now restarting, all over again.
Total party pooper.
So for 13 years, I've [not-so-patiently] waited for the opportunity to actually attend the promotion ceremony of the introvert who makes my heart burst with pride but hates crowds, public speaking and calling attention to himself.
And after 13 years of begging to actually be present for such an occasion, it finally happened.
For the very first time in Team Cuthrell history, on Wednesday, June 14, OUR FAMILY GOT TO SEE OUR SOLDIER PROMOTED!
He kept things as low key as low key can be (I had to text his parents to even let them know their son had made a new rank), and he refused to let me throw him a party.
But he did let the boys, my dad and me attend the ceremony (without a camera). And he did let me bring food for his work buddies, who stopped during their lunch hour to catch the big event.
He didn't technically let me make a banner and paint Dollar Tree store bowls gold, but once I arrived with them in hand and his friends scaled the walls of his facility to hang the sign, he couldn't exactly tell me no.
That's as close to a party as this girl will actually get.
Congratulations, Supersoldier! We are so incredibly proud of you! Not because of your rank, title or any insignia you wear on your uniform. But because of who you are, how you serve and the kind of leader, role model and incredible example of honor and integrity you are every time you put on that uniform.
WE LOVE YOU! CONGRATULATIONS!