Saturday, February 17, 2007

...on the bumper of my...

SUV, uh, I mean, Saturn. It doesn't quite have the same impact as SUV but I'm proud just the same. I bet if I had that sticker on my SUV it wouldn't have been stolen. Daredevil gave me my sticker last night. I love it and proudly display it on my car.

I asked Daredevil what made him choose the Marines over the other branches of service. He thought for a moment then replied, "Probably because it is the most challenging." That's a fitting answer for Daredevil.

I come from a family of all girls. There are four of us. My mother longed for a boy but she had to wait for grandchildren for that dream to come true. The first grandchild was a girl. Her dream would have to wait another 7 years. Then she was blessed with seven grandsons within 5 years. All the boys are quickly becoming men. My oldest sister has three boys also. Her eldest was the first one to want to become a Marine. He was in ROTC all through high school. The recruiters reassured him that the heart surgery he had when he was 15 months old would not prevent him from being a Marine. He was crushed when he was rejected. Now, both of his younger brothers are Marines. One has completed bootcamp and is training to be a mortar man. The other leaves for bootcamp around the same time as Daredevil. We have three Marines in our family now.

My sister and I are proud but scared. This is such an uneasy time to have your son join the military. Especially, the Marines. I read daily about the casualties of our Marines and I know that there is a mother somewhere crying daily because her son came home in a box. And while that scares me to no end, I think what scares me worse are the mental wounds of war. They are so much harder to heal. As I said in my previous post, I want to protect him and I can't. So, much of what is going on in this world goes against my morals and values. I don't believe in killing and war but I understand that sometimes there are necessary evils. You have to stand up for what you believe in and defend it to the end. We didn't start this war. We just want to protect everyone we can and in whatever way we have to.

I look at these boys becoming men and I wonder when. When did this happen? Just yesterday, they were all running around hunting Easter eggs. They were swinging on the vines in the woods. They were fighting over toys and hitting each other with them. They were playing baseball. They were wrestling in my living room. (Oh, yeah. That was yesterday.) When did they grow up? Where was I? How come I didn't notice? I'm with them everyday yet some days it feels like I haven't seem them for years. Like I have been an absent parent. Soon they will have all sprouted wings and flown away. And while I don't want to clip their wings, I wonder if they are ready. Have I prepared them for life? Have I prepared them for the world?

(I'll finish this post later, my computer or blogger or something is acting up and I need to quit before I throw this computer through the wall.)