My son asked us to leave 40 minutes before he and the other recruits were to board the transport to meps. He told me to not make it any harder on him than it already was. I left with my heart in my throat. I didn't want things to be hard on him, but I hated that I couldn't spend every possible second with him. I'm so very proud of him. He became a father 4 days before he left. He's got a beautiful baby girl and her mother, as well as us here, anxiously waiting and counting down the days until he graduates. I'd always heard others say how hard it is to let go, but now I understand. My firstborn has grown up so quickly and is becoming "That Man". You know, the one everyone looks up to and admires for his strength, morals and values. I gave him that start and I'm hoping the Marines builds upon it.