It's way too easy to push back in the recliner, read a little, watch the tennis tournament and drink a bit of wine this weekend and forget what it's all about.
Unless you actually know someone in the military, we take them too much for granted. And even then, it's too easy to mistake a year in Afghanistan as... say a "few weeks out of town". Don't live near Fayetteville, North Carolina? easy to forget the thousands deployed from there who have left behind wives, children and small businesses that are struggling without the income from the normal population.
As a rule we are pretty uninvolved in the lives of those military men and women who are working in so many places around the world to protect the freedoms we celebrate tomorrow.
In two weeks Mitchell and I will help to celebrate the marriage of Megan and Andy. Three weeks later he will leave for three months in Qutar. He's an Air Force pilot and, altho they have spent a lot of time separated already, she will soon need to learn the new role of military wife in a city she has only visited.
Today, Allison will start the day with only 300 or so wake ups left before her Neil comes home from Afghanistan. If you don't have any friends in the military, you might want to check out her blog - 400 Wake-ups. She talks frankly about what it's like to be left behind and how the day-to-day craziness in Washington affects real, live, flesh and blood soldiers and their families. She's also all about fun, so it's a good read.
The main thing is that we all need to stop every day and remember there are real people all over the world to whom we owe our thanks and our concern. We need to pay more attention to military families and to the soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines who are recovering from their wounds and trying to put their lives (and bodies) back together.
It's too easy to remember for one day each summer as we picnic, listen to the band and shoot off a bottle rocket or two.
We need to do it every day. well ... not the bottle rocket thing!
4 days ago