Sometimes, things happen that make you realize that your problems, while large in your life, are truly very small.
Yesterday, I wrote about being worried about a court date.
Yesterday, after I wrote that post, my co-worker stopped by my window. I asked him how he was. He says, “Not good….
I just found out a friend of mine in Afghanistan was hit by an IED and lost both of his legs.”
Talk about a moment where all of your problems seem very small.
What a harsh reminder that my life is so very small in this world. What a harsh reminder that there are still people that are willing to risk everything in a country so far from home.
Whether or not you agree with the war in Afghanistan, if you think we should be there or not, the fact is that there are young men and women dying there every day. These are young men and women that have decided that they wanted to contribute to this country in a meaningful way, doing a mission that they believe in in a country far from their home and their loved ones.
And many have paid the ultimate sacrifice for it.
Some come home with wounds, both visible and invisible.
I understand why people do not support the war. I understand why they think we should be over there. But you DO NOT withdraw support from the troops.
Cause that is wrong on so many levels.
A soldier/airman/marine/sailor has decided that they are going to serve their country, in whatever it asks of them. They will leave behind all that they know and go through training so that they can do their job shoulder to shoulder with other men and women that have decided the same thing. They know that their training can mean the difference between life and death for themselves and those that fight beside them.
They make life and death decisions on a daily basis.
There is still no new information about the soldier that lost his legs this past Saturday. I keep asking my coworker, but he has heard nothing else either. He is of the opinion that someone died in the attack, which has led the military to institute an information blackout, which is understandable.
This soldier, like so many over there, was on his third tour in Afghanistan. He wasn’t even supposed to be there. He was supposed to be in Alaska with his wife and year-old daughter, but his orders were pulled and he was sent back to Afghanistan.
Let me state that again:
HE WASN’T SUPPOSED TO BE THERE.
But he is a good soldier and he did what was asked of him with no questions. He went to serve his country and their foreign interests and to serve shoulder to shoulder with his fellow soldiers.
He lost both of his legs for this.
Think about that for a minute. He will never walk again. He will never run with his daughter in a park. He will never kick a soccer ball with her. He will never hold her in his arms and dance with her at a father/daughter dance. He won’t walk her down the aisle.
All because he believed in service before self.
His sacrifice and selflessness stagger me. They make me feel small.
Today, I read an article about Bowe Bergdahl. He is the only American military POW in Afghanistan right now. He has been a captive of the Taliban since July 2009.
He is separated from his family in Idaho because he chose service over self. His family gets news in pieces, not knowing if he is alive from day to day. They hope that his faith in God and the love of the entire town in Idaho are sustaining him.
But they don’t know.
I know that they live in fear that the next knock on their door will be someone telling them that their son is dead.
How horrible would that be? To not know if your son was alive or dead from moment to moment. To wonder if he was suffering some horrible torture at the hands of his captors.
I can’t even imagine.
In the comments below the article about Bergdahl, some idiot said, ” Sorry, no sympathy or support for volunteer soldiers who fight in wars that do nothing to protect America’s borders, language, or culture.”
Makes me want to hunt that a$$hole down and give him a piece of my mind. I don’t care if you don’t support the reasoning behind being there, but you don’t not support the men and women in uniform.
Hell, they are all twice the man that that idiot is – even the women!
The point is – please, remember these military men and women who are serving so far from home, who are being injured and dying, for their country. Not just during the signing of the National Anthem. Not just during the holidays or on a Sunday during church or a football game.
Remember them all the time.
Put them in your prayers, if you pray. Spare them a thought during your day. Especially keep in mind Bergdahl and his family and the family of my co-worker’s friend. And his friend.
Remember that these men and women decided they wanted to serve their country. Know what that means? They wanted to serve you. They wanted to serve you for crappy pay and benefits that get cut every time they turn around. They wanted to serve you and uproot their families every 3-4 years. Or leave their family behind, missing births, anniversaries, birthdays, Christmases, Thanksgivings and 4th of July’s. They wanted to serve this country in a meaningful way.
They chose service before self.
They chose it for you.