By the time I post this, it will be Monday. Not just any Monday but Memorial Day.
Around here, as in many communities across the nation, this Monday signifies the start of 'summer' no matter what the calender says. We get caught up in the trappings of the season - bar-b-ques, warm(er) weather, school ending or preparing to end, vacations, swimming, fresh fruits and home grown-veggies.
We get so hyper focused on the little things that mean summer, that we forget what the day really means. And so, before I too get caught up in the 'stuff', I want to take pause to say thanks.
Thanks to the men and women who take/have taken the mantle of soilder on their own backs on behalf of the rest of us. Thank you for the sacrifices:
- time with your family because those are days you can't replace.
- your innocence, because eyes that have seen pain and suffering and war loose a bit of the wistful ignorance the rest of us keep part of whether we realize it or not.
- and sadly, sometimes your lives.
My son loves books. He loves stories and lately, he loves one in particular series. I've mentioned it before - Logan is smitten with the Magic Tree House books. In each story, the two young characters travel to different places and times in a, well, magic tree house. They've been to pyramids. They traveled to the jungle. They've been to the plains and survived a tornado with pioneer children in a one room sod school house.
And to date in our reading, they have also been to the Revolutionary and Civil Wars. Seeing those stories through my child's eyes put them into new prospective for me. I put those books down in even more awe of the sacrifice men and women have made over the years - both in literal and figurative battle.
I looked around this morning as our pastor invited any veteran able to stand to do so. Among these individuals were old men bent over by age. They had seen a lifetime before they hit 30. They nodded at the applause as they stood. Humbled and yet proud.
Thanks to these men. Thanks to the ones that came before them. Thanks to the men and women that have come after them and to those that are yet to come. Thanks to you all.