By Jade Stone
I hope this finds you thoroughly enjoying your summer! I personally think Satan should take his weather back. If ever there was a doubt in my mind, after enduring this crazy heat, I am more than certain Hell is not a place I intend to spend any time! But, soon it will be gone and we will miss even this searing heat.
For me this summer has been by far one of the busiest. I have had the opportunity to travel quite a bit this summer, unfortunately for business purposes only, however, as with all air travel, one is certain to encounter a few interesting people on the way.
Typically when visiting the Dallas Fort Worth, fondly referred to as DFW, I see tons of soldiers going in all sorts of directions. Interestingly, they always seem to be shipping out, not coming home. On my last trip to Houston I even encountered an entire gate at DFW decorated by the USO and filled with an assortment of refreshments and several older folks who acted as a sort of hospitality crew.
It seems this entire unit of soldiers was supposed to fly out the day before but because of delays they had been forced to sleep in this terminal. So the USO stepped in to make them as comfortable as possible before sending them off with a patriotic farewell as they embarked on their journey to a war torn country that had no love lost for them.
I couldn’t help but look at each one of those young men searching for something in their eyes that would tell me they were confident they would be victorious and that they would be back again very soon. But as I searched, instead of falling into the clear solidness that the confidence of youth brings, I fell into a bottomless pit of despair.
The truth is, some of these boys would not come home and they knew it. They would not be thanked for their service, and they would never be hugged again out of sheer gratitude. Why this hit me so profoundly that day is still beyond me but the thought never occurred to me that some of these soldiers I passed in an airport on a regular basis would not live to talk about the return flight. It’s uncomfortable to imagine but sadly true…and then my day went on.
That’s sometimes how it is for all of us. We give a few minutes to keep those soldiers and their families in our thoughts and then as quickly as the thought came it is gone because it may not be our reality. Some of us find ourselves asking “but what can I do to fix that”-well, nothing, but Labor day will be here in a flash and I challenge you to join me in giving them a second thought and maybe even send a prayer or two to the families who miss them so. Lord knows, they can use all the help they can get.
Next time I’ll tell you about my flight home that week and the interesting Marine I met along the way!
Jade welcomes your comments here as well as any suggestions you may have for her future posts. You may also e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org. To read previous Military Mama posts, CLICK HERE.