Sacrifice (n): the surrender or destruction of something prized or desirable for the sake of something considered as having a higher or more pressing claim.
What does that word mean to you? I know what it means to me as an Army girlfriend, as a citizen of the United States, as a Christian, and as a woman. It’s a lot wrapped up into a nine letter word. When I think back to times in my life where I’ve had to give up something for a greater purpose, it was usually prefaced with a whole lot of struggle and unwillingness. It’s kinda funny that as military spouses/SO’s…we seem to do it so willingly. Well, most of the time. We all have our moments of unwillingness, but in the long run…we love someone whose job it is to defend this country against enemies foreign and domestic. They can be sent in harms way for long periods of time, leaving us to fend for ourselves. We go from 2 to 1 to 2 again on a regular basis. We meet AMAZING women who we bond with because nobody else gets it, only to leave them behind a few years later. Sacrifice.
For me, I think about the fact that in this moment, my soldier is in a far away land. A place where undoubtedly he’d rather not be, but he is and he does it willingly. He’s up, showered, and probably eating breakfast right about now. He’s lookin’ hella sexy in his ACU’s, and preparing to do a job that needs to be done. He’s risking his life for me. He loves this country and he not only says it, but he shows it. Nobody forced him to become a soldier, it’s something he did willingly. He has made a sacrifice so that you and I don’t have to. He does it for those he loves and who love him and for those who hate him and never realize. He endures 130 degree temperatures, bullets flying over his head, MRE’s, creatures of every kind, and danger around every corner. He can’t plop down with a beer on Super Bowl Sunday with the guys in his favorite Lay-Z-Boy and enjoy the creature comforts we have. Sacrifice.
I don’t think most people really understand the true definition of that word without coming from a military background. Not judging the civi’s, but it brought an ENTIRELY NEW perspective to me when I started dating the FH. I have always been a patriotic, troop supporting, God-fearing, appreciative American…but SACRIFICE took on a whole new meaning this past year.
I applaud the moms out there who day in and day out try to create “life as usual” for their children while daddy is away to a war zone. Sure, some people can compare it to being a single mom with marriage that was dissolved…but even I know there is nothing to compare. You dust yourself off, march on, fight back your tears and fears, and do it for your kids. To you women, even those of you reading this that I don’t know, my hats off to you. Sincerely. I admire your strength and courage. You are doing a job. A job that has to be done. You are the strength of your military man and the drive that keeps him going. THANK YOU for doing what you do. Hats off to you ladies.
I was quickly browsing over a blog about Obama declaring November “National Military Family Month.” In it, the author wasn’t too pleased with that declaration. They were grateful, but felt enough wasn’t being done to truly appreciate military families and the sacrifices they make on a daily basis. I tend to agree. Yes, our soldiers, sailors, marines, and airmen are sacrificing but the ones left behind are also. People on the outside tend to forget that. Our service members draw strength from us to keep fighting and complete their missions.
If you are a civilian reading this blog or perhaps even a girlfriend or someone without children…take the time to thank the wife of a service member. You know someone in your Church, in your workplace, or even maybe a stranger down the block. It’s a really tough job, but somebody has to do it. Offer to babysit, bake them a meal, offer to do some holiday shopping for them, wrap their presents, offer to send a care package. Do something to show them that you care and that you DO recognize the sacrifices their family is making for you. It would make a world of a difference to them and make their load just a little lighter. We owe it to our military families.