Wow, it has been a long time since I have been here!!
Well, I am here now to wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving!!! I have a lot to be thankful for and I hope you all can find lots to be thankful for in your lives! I am so happy we have this wonderful way to communicate called the Internet. It is nice to be able to share thoughts and feelings with friends around the world!
I have been meaning to post this since the day my daughter left but haven't had time and also couldn't decide if I wanted to post this for the world to see. Let me preface it by saying I hope everyone who doesn't have a loved one in the Armed Service can share in our pride and love and thankfulness for those that are giving so much!
I am thankful for everyone who is giving a part of their lives to protect the freedoms we all sometimes take for granted.
My Army Star
There are so many things that come to mind today, this day that my baby leaves for BCT (Basic Combat Training). Writing this I realize one of the first things that comes to mind is the many acronyms I will learn along the way. LOL
The Army star logo catches my eye and reminds me of many things. One of them is our home state, Texas, the Lone Star State... this wonderful state we love. Another is how fun it was to make the star in polymer clay... a star that I sent with her on this journey of training that I hope she uses as a reminder of how much I love her. Another is that my daughter has become a star to so many people who hold freedom so dear. She is my star and I love her.
There are so many feelings all wrapped up in that star! Pride, Fear, Love, Hope, Prayer, Truth, Training, Understanding, Unknown, Sadness, Joy, Learning, Safety, Loneliness, Belonging, Courage, Strength, Weakness, Eternity. These feelings are wrapped up in the love I have for my daughter embarking on this adventure in her life, this chapter that will change her in so many ways yet deepen her convictions of who she is already.
As I sat in the hall to see her one last time before she left I thought about what she is feeling and I wondered at her bravery. Bravery in more ways than being a soldier.
She packed up her things, put them in storage. She said goodbye to her friends and family and her little dog. You say "but it is only for a few months". Yes, but she will be unreachable, unhugable. In the past, we have talked for hours on the phone, which is a wonder since neither of us really enjoy talking on the phone. It is always different when we are talking because it doesn't matter if it is about something silly or something earth shattering, it is always important enough to share and so easy to share with each other.
She will be jumping into a whole new world that is so important. She will be doing things she has never done, required to do these things. She will not be asked, she will be told. She has given up much of her freedom for ours.
But I have to stop and think, it is not just for us. In return for some of the freedom she loses, she will learn so much, become so much more, so much stronger than I believe she already is. She will be in pain but she will have fun too. She will enjoy the pain of learning something so important. I can only imagine what the next few weeks will be like.
Also, let's be honest, it pays to be in the Army. The rewards are wonderful. She will get an education and earn her career in a way that makes her proud. She will learn about so many things she would never have learned by just going to school. She will learn about life in a whole new way, in a way she would never have learned from home. She will learn about people in a way she could never have learned in everyday life.
To sum it up I would like to explain the feelings I mentioned before, the feelings that are in no particular order but that are all very important...
Pride - The pride I feel for what she is doing, the steps she is taking to be a better person. The pride she will feel when she graduates.
Fear - A mother's fear that something will happen to her baby while she is far from home. A fear that if something happens, I can't be there for her.
Love - That should probably be 1st! I love her so much and miss her already even though it is only the first day of her journey.
Hope - Hope that even though it will be hard, she will come out of this so glad that she did it. Hope that all her dreams for this chapter of her life come true.
Prayer - I will pray for her every day... I will pray that she is strong, that she remembers what is important and that she uses her faith in prayer and most selfishly I will pray that she stays safe, a prayer that is always in my heart.
Truth - I hope everything she does will be because of a higher truth, a bigger plan that she may not see or understand but that will be true to her.
Training - She will be training to be a soldier but even more importantly, she will be training for the rest of her life. Her life from this day will be new and different and I want her to learn the best from all that she will be trained for.
Understanding - She will get an understanding of how the world works just by learning to be a part of a team. She will understand what she is capable of and what can be accomplished as a team member.
Unknown - I think we all fear the unknown. I know that she can face the unknown. She has before. I want her to face it with all the beauty of her soul.
Sadness - As I write this tears have flowed. I miss being able to hear about her discoveries and trials as they happen. I think she has shared most of the major ones in her life with me and I look forward to hearing about them later but it won't quite be the same as sharing them close to the moment they happen.
Joy - I am so thrilled that she is so excited about this and am so overjoyed that she has found a path in her life that seems so right.
Learning - We all will learn so much from this experience!
Safety - I ache for her safety as I always have as her mother. She will also hold the safety of others in her hands.
Loneliness & Belonging - She will have a taste of both. In the end, the belonging will be the most important star that shines through.
Courage - She has almost always been courageous. She can do anything she puts her mind to and she doesn't always follow the easy path to do it.
Strength and Weakness - She will learn about both. She will learn the strengths and weaknesses she has physically and mentally and she will learn from them.
Eternity - It already seems like an eternity since she left and it has only been hours.
I love you! You are my Star!