22 lives that will never be the same….

I may rant about aspects of Army life now and again (See yesterday) but today I want to – I NEED to – reflect on something much greater than my petty pharmacy issue.

Mr. “O” was lucky that he got to return home earlier than anticipated. His entire unit did not come home with him.

You might have seen in the news that 5 Soldiers died in Iraq this past week.

Those 5 Soldiers were my husbands Soldiers.

17 more were injured.

Had my husband still been there, there is a 98% chance that he would no longer be walking upon this Earth. The rocket hit what was his “chu” (his little trailer house).

5 of those 22 lives are lost forever. 17 of those lives are changed forever. The title says 22 lives…. but reality is that it is HUNDREDS of lives that are changed forever.

From the Soldier that was injured but went back into a burning building without shoes on to pull another Soldier out – and then was unable to get back into the building to save one who perished.

From the families of all the Soldiers who are lost or injured – this can quickly equal hundreds of lives affected.

From the Soldiers who were there who were neither lost nor injured, but left helpless to do anything in the choas.

All of these lives are completely changed forever.

For me, personally, there are feelings of immense guilt. I feel awful for my fellow military families, but at the same time, I feel extreme relief that I can look at see my husband. I can touch him. I can smell him. I can argue with him about where the hell he moved my shoes to.

I am shaking right now with the thought that had it taken just 2 more weeks to get him home – his homecoming might not been of one being mad at American Airlines. It would have been one with a much more somber effect – a zombing effect – that my fellow Army wives are about to deal with.

Everything happens for a reason. My husband was not happy to be coming home early. (Well, he was happy to come home – but he didn’t want to leave his guys behind)  I told him, “You know, maybe something big is about to happen and it just isn’t your time for that”.

How I wish I had never said those words.

This event will haunt him until the day he does leave this Earth. He feels as though if he was there he would have been able to do something to stop it from even occurring.

I am not trying to get into whether we should be in a certain place or not. That is a discussion for a different time under different circumstances.

But tonight, when you see your families – when you talk to your parents on the phone – when you see your friends – when you walk past a stranger – remember that life is but a brief moment.

Love. Laugh. Live. Make sure those you care about know that you do. Show them. Hug them. Kiss them. Let the little things go to the wayside.

Above all, be thankful that wherever you are – there are those who are there ready to stand and protect you and all that you love. Their courage can never be underestimated or diminished.

I salute all of them on this day.



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