What was great about going through the hospital experience while Royal was deployed is that I got to see a glimpse of how the military family bands together over here.
The ladies at work, most of them Navy or former Navy wives, went right to work alerting the correct people. People I didn't even know existed in the system. Royal and I are young, we're shiny and new and frankly, have no clue what we're doing half the time. Those ladies saved me that day.
That night, within minutes after I was brought home from the hospital, I received a phone call:
Male voice: "Hello is this Kathy -------?"
Me: "Yes, this is she...."
Male voice: "This is not bad news, I want you to know that."
Me thinking okay, what the ...
Male voice continued: "I'm Dave -------, Royal Marines chaplain for Royal's attachment. I heard you went to the hospital this evening, is everything okay?"
Me: "Yes sir, it was more of a a sight-seeing trip. I'm better now, though nobody knows what's going on. I appreciate your calling."
Rev Dave: "Would it be okay if I came to talk to you?"
Me: "Yes sir, Now!?" (now being 21:45)
Rev Dave: "I can come now, or we can do it another time. How is tomorrow?"
Me: "I work until 17:00, but that is great thanks."
Rev Dave: "After 17:00. And, just so you know, you don't have to call me sir."
Me: "That's just the way I was raised!"
Rev Dave: "Okay, just as long as you don't think you have to because I'm an officer or anything. Don't think I'm someone you can't say no to!"
Me: (laughing) "Okay great, I'll probably still call you sir, just so you know!"
Rev Dave: (laughing) "That's fine! See you tomorrow."
Being all brand new it literally took me about half an hour to realize why he said it wasn't bad news - my thoughts should have immediately been concerned for my husband. Except that they don't deliver that sort of information over the phone, so technically I was right not to worry!
I rapidly cleaned the house and bought some biscuits before the padre showed up. He arrived around 5:30 and departed about 9:30! He was very natural, very sweet, very knowledgable, and very funny. It was like talking to one of Royal's friends - it's been a long time since I've talked with someone who knows Royal Marines!
We spoke about the difference between Marines and the Navy, World War II, some of the work he's done, the town... and on. We made fun of the Royal Marine stereotype and we traded funny RM stories (he had a few more than I did!). He also offered to look for some volunteer work for me - and get me some groceries! I accepted the first, but turned down the second (I wasn't on my death bed!).
Before he left, he said he wasn't coming back until I had a refrigerator and it was filled with Guinness! Now I know.
And also to tell Royal that he was a beefer.