We filled six cargo crates and now living with borrowed furniture. There are suitcases filled with clothes and we are eating off of paper plates. We have shipped a car and have another one for a few more weeks before it heads back to the States. We are exhausted.
Exhausted would be an understatement but as many other faithful military family wives have said to me,” The light at the end of the tunnel is here, cheer up.” It made me stop and think about the families that do this as a career. They move all the time, every three years to zig zag around the world to serve our country. They do it with kids, animals and husbands who sometimes are heading off to the latest war. It made me wonder, how many people really realize what goes on within the military family unit?
It is truly a way of life. One that is full of ups and downs that can not be defined or explained to someone who has not been there or lived the experience. I never really gave it much thought before we, I mean, he, signed up to serve in the Army.
And that brings me to the point of, when he serves, the family serves too. We are subjected to the ups and downs of deployments, changing of duty stations (PCS) and all that goes along with being uprooted from family, friends and even ones own country.
Frankly, it has not been easy and in many ways I am extremely grateful to have had this experience but am really looking forward to going home in more ways than one. Home means that we will no longer be subject to the ways of the Military. I do not have to wake up to bullets being shot at ranges that are near by, hearing mortars that make the houses shake, seeing soldiers everyday running in formation and chanting while running PT (physical fitness) at 5:30am, trying to negotiate driving behind a convoy of stykers or military vehicle’s, learning military time ( which I never really got), showing ID’s at checkpoints or standing at attention facing the flag at 1700 (5:00pm) everyday. I also will not have to watch the busses of soldiers leave in the morning going to war and knowing that some may not return, will not need to learn how to explain to my daughter that some of her friends dads/moms are not coming home, that I had a special letter for her in the dresser draw in case I get a visit telling me her Dad is gone. I can stop worrying about being blackout from the internet and wonder who was just injured, hurt or killed. Better yet, I will not have to go to another funeral. I will not have to worry about getting a speeding ticket on post and have it affect my husband. Mostly I will be able to go about doing what ever I want, where ever I want because I live in a free country, I live in the United States.
How do I go about thanking all those who have helped me go though this experience?
How do I tell them that the kind words, the help, the smiles and patience they had for me truly made me see a small picture of a world that so many judge, justify or do not even acknowledge exists?
All I can say to them is THANK YOU! It is simple, pure and full on the love that the words are meant to share. I know that I will see some of them again, somewhere, either on face book, on television, in person or by chance. I have built a new family that shares a special bond .
With a tear in my eye and pride in my heart, I am grateful for them and the great nation they serve.
There is light at the end of the tunnel.