My best friend, Jeff "Freight Train" Knox, told me one day at lunch right before I began this whole journey, "God opens doors and it's our job to walk through them." Pretty powerful words from such a close confident. "By the way," he said just before he shoved a slice of pizza in his mouth, "I've trademarked that saying, so you can't use it! I'm probably going to use it in a book title or motivational speaking seminar."
Moving along with this analogy, I woke up this morning thinking that I had only two doors to walk through: one leading to Afghanistan and the other leading back home. However, to my surprise a third door flew wide open this evening and I just ran right through it. This one still leads to Afghanistan, but with a pit stop in Knoxville!
In short, I'm still getting released from active duty; however, I'm being sent home to "recover" and rest so that my TSH levels can begin to normalize. As soon as I have a couple of lab tests that come back within the normal range, I will be medically cleared to proceed with the deployment. I think it should take roughly 4 weeks to get back to normal. As soon as I'm cleared, I will head down to Ft Benning, GA for a 5-7 day mobilization course and then head over to Afghanistan to meet up with the rest of my unit. If this timeline holds tight, I will only be a week or two behind them.
The greatest part of this whole situation is that I'm getting a lot of quality time with the family! The thought of going the rest of the year without seeing them was starting to tear me apart inside, so it's truly a blessing from God that I'm getting this opportunity. However, all this is dependent on my health. So, please continue to pray for us throughout this process. It will be tough leaving the guys, but great to be reunited with the family for a while.
Thanks to all of you for your prayers and support. Take care and I look forward to seeing many of you in the very near future!