The view out the window today…
And the pretty flowers in my garden, getting hammered by the rain.
It’s been a grey dreary week. The rain keeps falling, with no sign of letting up until Thursday or Friday. I don’t usually mind the rain, but after last week’s non-stop downpours, I’d REALLY like to see the sun. Even for an hour…the reprieve would be nice.
But, the rain seems to fit life at the moment. Not mine, to be sure, but that of my big guy. He’s having a bit of a tough time. We texted back and forth today, and his words broke my heart.
“Hey Mom. I think I know why I’m not in the Marines any more. It hasn’t been a great month for a lot of my buddies in Afghanistan…ie the companies I would have been in if I had stayed…”
I told him I was sorry, and I knew that it had to hurt.
“I’m still alive so I’m not hurting as much as they are or were. You have no idea how hard this is…for some of them I even feel responsible for them, like I didn’t do a good enough job.”
Turns out that he got a call this morning from the parents of one of his buddies, a young man killed in action. He’s hurting. So I hurt. Then came the hard part:
“I’m sorry…I never EVER would have wanted to put you through what his parents are going through now!”
I told him there was no need to apologize, that being a Marine is honorable, and dying in the line of duty is beyond hard but honorable. I reminded him that I had to come to terms with the risk when he enlisted, and that’s why it was so hard then. I would never want to lose him, Marine or not, but I can do nothing to control the risk.
It’s hard to come face to face with death. Harder still when you’re 21 years old and wishing you hadn’t been medically discharged from the Corps. Young men who are 21 shouldn’t die. I get that. I agree. And yet, as I told Brent…”I can’t think of anything more painful than losing a child. But I HAVE to hang on to the fact that God has a perfect plan, no matter how hard it is here in this life. That’s why faith is so important.”
Today, my young man took another big step toward maturity. While it’s hard to watch him hurt, my heart rejoices in what I see. He is a fine young man, and I am proud to call him my son.