With Veterans Day approaching, my heart is full. You see, I’m one of the lucky ones. As a little girl, I remember learning about the endless stories, the wars, the uniforms, and the adorned medals and ribbons of my father, grandfathers and uncle. While I am proud of my family history, nothing resonates more than what I see of today’s military sacrifices. Sacrifices made by people like my dear friend.
You see, my friend and I are similar creatures. We grew up together going to the same schools, we’re slaves to our clean and orderly state-of-minds, but most importantly, we’re mothers of young children. Today I write to you in the comfort of my living room, with a view of the grass and trees that surround my home, and my children playing beside me.
As for my friend, she’s on the other side of the world serving a six-month deployment in the Middle East. My friend works all day long and sleeps in a small room that has cardboard, carpet and duct tape over the only window to shun dust storms, heat and the blistering sun. She often communicates with family and friends using present day technology, but not often enough. Not enough for her daughters who miss out on their mother’s goodnight kiss each night. Not enough for her daughters who won’t be spending Thanksgiving or Christmas with their mom. Not enough for her daughters who need their mother because someone’s feelings got hurt on the playground or they’re nervous about school the next day.
Thank God for people like my friend who make sacrifices so people like me don’t have to. My friend serves because she believes in America. She believes what we stand for … land of the free, home of the brave.
Tomorrow marks a day of celebration, honoring friends and family like mine for their service. But what about the day after that and the day after that?
Find ways to extend your gratitude throughout your life, not just once a year. What about your wedding day? How can you honor your loved military members during your special day?
Maybe it’s a simple picture:
Or, your bouquet:
Maybe it’s your shoes:
Or creative escort tags:
A fun take on a traditional wedding cake:
Or a vow not only to one another, but to the military:
Whether you are planning a wedding tomorrow, or sleeping in, take a few moments to pay your respects to the men and women who have made everyday sacrifices for this fine nation we call home.
And to my friend, I salute you today and every day.