I have been thinking about this posting for some time, trying to get my thoughts in order. Because I feel so emotional about this, my mind keeps rushing back and forth. I'm not sure that I am really ready to do it, but here goes.
My ancestors came to this country in the 1600's. I think they have fought in nearly every war our country has been involved in. I know they fought in some of the Indian Wars, the Revolutionary War, and the Civil War. In fact, family members fought on opposite sides in the Civil War. I'm not really sure about World War I, but we were well represented in World War II. My brother was excused from the draft when his time came, as he had some weaknessess left in his muscles from the polio he suffered as a child. There were cousins in Viet Nam, a war I did not believe we should be involved in.
As I believe I have mentioned before, I was a tomboy growing up. Besides playing cowboys and Indians, I also played cops and robbers and of course, war. I can remember how noble I felt rolling down the bank on the north side of our yard, pretending I had been shot and with my last breath I was holding the American flag high.
But now war is no longer a game, or something to hear family stories about. It is no longer fun. It is real, and it is the scariest thing I have ever had to face. Garret, my youngest, leaves for Iraq in four days. He will be gone for six months.
He and his wife have been busy preparing for his deployment. We were hoping to see him before he leaves, but there was just no way we could arrange it. He certainly didn't have time to come home, and we couldn't afford to go to Maryland. It is probably just as well, he wouldn't like me crying over him all the time. He keeps telling me that he wants to go, and that he is not worried. I know that his job is not the most dangerous, but that is small comfort. He is my child, and I will worry. He is going to see and experience things that he never dreamed of. I hope he is mentally and physically ready for this.
So, we will send him hugs and kisses, and wish him God speed home. We will pray for him, send him mail, and talk to him on Skype when we can. We will be here when Kalee needs to talk, or wants to share thoughts with us. And we will count the days and wait.
I love you, Garret.