My daughter-in-law, Shannon, ships out a week from today for her second tour of duty in Iraq. She will be gone for 15 months. She is a medic with the 101st out of Fort Campbell in Kentucky and I cannot express my pride and respect that I have for her. While she is in harm’s way my son, Nathan, will be home with their three children – my grandchildren. Dillion is 10, Leah is 7 and Molly is 6.
I think about them; worry about them; pray for them (and I’m not a religious person) several times a day. One of the most difficult things a parent can do is to support your children in the life decisions they make. If it were my place to choose, Shannon would not be in the Army, but that is her choice and she is an outstanding soldier who is committed to the Army and intends to make a career of it. Nathan, who was in the Army, got out and is the stay-at-home Dad. Being a military family is a tough life. I know, I grew up that way. But, it is what they have decided to do and I respect and support their decision.
Of course I am very worried about this deployment. Despite the fact that the media in our country have significantly reduced the amount of news about the war there, I assure you it is not a safe place. If not for the US presence there the country would slip into anarchy almost overnight. The politicians that got us into this war have no idea how to get us out of it. Whomever wins the November election will have to deal with the war. I’m not going to get on my soapbox here. I just want to see Shannon come home safe and sound next summer when her tour ends.
And, if you are the praying type, I would ask that you remember her in your prayers. She’s going to need all the help she can get.