November 11, 2011

Heroes Among Us

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My dad is a veteran of the Air Force. His father, my grandpa, was in the Navy. And yet, it never hit home with me. Maybe I was too young then. I'm thinking of them today.

My brother joined the Army National Guard, and through him, I met my husband. Only with those two boys thousands of miles away in a desert did it begin to sink in- the weight of it all. I think of them today, too.

I remember Googling late one spring night, and somehow stumbling onto a few blogs. I remember specifically reading Goodnight Moon first, curled up at my desk with a cup of something and low lamplight. How lucky, I thought, to find a girl who knows what it's like to have someone gone. I found others like the Annoyed Army Wife soon after. It started to occur to me that there was a whole world out there I never knew. I had already been writing my blog for a few months, and though they didn't know me yet, I felt as if I were among friends. I knew that if they were to read my posts full of worry and longing, I would be understood by them. The 'real life' people in my world couldn't grasp it for the most part, but these girls loved someone in the military, too. Without them even knowing it, they assured me that deployments end and life could be beautiful afterwards. I realized that there were thousands of girls who had been in my shoes, who loved their veterans, and who wanted them home.

Today, I'm thinking of all those veterans- those who never saw war and those who did. Those who came home safe and sound, and those whose mind or body is no longer completely whole. Those who may have sat in an air conditioned trailer somewhere relatively safe, and those who were in constant danger of losing their lives. Those who were always afraid, and those who had no fear. Those who laid awake at night thinking of their children, and those who tried to shut out every thought. Those who loved their job and nothing else, and those who ached to be home with their wives or husbands again.

They are all heroes.

And to all the heroic wives, girlfriends, and widows of those veterans, whose blogs introduced me to a group of friends so kind, so personable, and so valuable- thank you for you family's service.


"Valor is stability, not of legs and arms, but of courage and the soul." 

- Michel de Montaigne


In honor of my husband, my brother, my father, 
my mother-in-law, my father-in-law, my brother-in-law,
my grandfather, my great grandfather,
and everyone else who has served.

13 kind comments from you:

Noelani said...

This made me smile :)

Jodi said...

This totally made me smile.. From one army wife to another thank your hubby for serving.. and thank you for being a soldier at home :) Hope you are doing well and will get out and enjoy some of that sunshine is chambana this weekend can you believe it snowed today!

Thisisme. said...

Lovely post today, especially in tribute to your family members who served. We must never forget.

Kaylee said...

Great post - you put it so well. I was so much like you - blogging away, and then finding a world of women who understood so much more than I could have imagined.

greaterexp said...

Thanks for helping me remember not only my children, sons-in-law, and step-daughter, but all my uncles and the many of our ancestors who gave up so much for what we have today. They and their families are/were absolutely the best. You're wonderful for writing about this. We'll pray for all our soldiers and their families.

Chantal said...

Beautiful post :)

Jillian said...

This post gave me goosebumps. Thank you for all your kind words, and for your family's service. I'm so lucky to have you as a role model and blog friend. xo

Mrs. H said...

What's interesting is the fact that you were one of the ones that has inspired me as mili blogger :) Thank you for your honorable sacrifice!

And everything you write always makes me covet your writing style :)

The New "Normal" said...

So very well said and suck thoughtful words. Your blog was one of the first that I stumbled upon months ago when we began this deployment and, just as you said in your post, I began to realize that I wasn't alone. It was such a good feeling to know there were others who felt exactly the same as I did. Thank you for all of your family's service, and for yours as well!

The New "Normal" said...

Ok, I should have proofread that before I submitted! It should say "such" not suck - yikes! Sorry!

Melissa Jaine said...

Beautiful post Erika.
I'm so glad you have an online community of Milspouses to relate to and get support from. And the fact that you've embraced me, being totally non-military!, is really touching, thank you. :)
mj.x

JennyTheBeatBoxer said...

You have such a beautiful way with words. I envy you!

beka said...


i love how you write.

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