Thursday, May 3, 2012



This Friday night will likely resemble most Friday nights; me sifting through the many social events I have been asked to attend and trying to decide which one is the best choice based on a variety of considerations, my parents bickering over which show to watch or whether it is a re-run, the dogs barking at the slightest hint of someone breathing four miles away…. But something will be different. Life as we have known it for going on half a lifetime will have changed.

Sure we will go about our duties and motions as we have always but a piece of the picture will be somewhere else. His Lordship is leaving us; no big deal right? He has left before it is not like he does not know his way home. This leave though, will change him and when he comes home… well my heart aches at what to expect. I cannot write about him or my family directly upon their requests so let me say this introduction is about life in general and the rest will be about my thoughts and feelings on the matter.
I am angry. Though not the first emotion I felt it has remained the constant. I am angry that my country is sending my brother or for that matter anyone’s brothers off to a war that has become redundant, unfocused, and unwinnable. There is no outcome that I can see where either side wins. Truthfully though, in war does anyone win? Is it not all such a waste of effort, time, and life?

Students of history will recognize almost a mirror image of the current war with the one our parents fought. Afghanistan is our generation’s Vietnam. Upon entry to the country I concede our intentions were well placed and perhaps good. The waters muddied when we split our fronts to invade Iraq for no other reason that a pack of propaganda and vanity. We left the Afghan front terribly marginalized and to our detriment have created a quagmire. Another lesson already taught in history… but apparently unlearned by some of the supposedly greatest minds in our land. I think perhaps what has happened is, the greatest minds, now realize that politics are a waste of their great mind’s usage.

I am selfish and prideful. How much of a jerk do I have to be to cry tears over this when so many have sacrificed and many sacrificed more than once and I quibble over the first call to duty? So many of my friends, now wives and mothers, have sent their husbands off to multiple deployments and if it was killing them inside I rarely saw it, knew it, or heard them speak of it. Naturally I had a couple closer to me than others and did get more of an inside view. Even that I find, did not prepare me for the roller coaster my family has ridden since we found out. I suppose every family has their journey own based on their individual dynamics and relationships; we all must endure this ride the best we can for “God and country” as they say.

I am proud. My brother is brave, but not overly so, courageous is a better word. He has grown into this man I do not know so well; a man I can be proud of. A man we can all be proud of. Despite your opinion or my opinion of the “cause” he is willing to go and face a foe that is often faceless and does not play by the same “rules” we know. He is prepared to face the horrors of war, the real not CGI or fake horrors of Hollywood, but the real life in your face horrors of war. Things he will never speak of, that will change him as a person and I pray help him become a better man. My brother is a man you can all be honored to know serves your country; strong, full of conviction, patriotic, driven, all American…. Loves baseball and barbeque, a good burger or his momma’s spaghetti, and he is fiercely proud of his heritage as a Scot Irish American with a strong history of soldiers. He has not even left the house yet, but he is already a Hero.


May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

God bless and God’s speed to my brother and all the men and women he travels with.

always ~a


  1. I hope the time goes quickly and he returns to your family safe and sound!!! When my brother in-law was deployed it was a constant countdown until he came home. Also, it was a bit easier because everyone could skype and facebook with him. Made the nervousness a little easier when we were able to see and talk to him. Your family is in my thoughts and prayers

    1. Michael,
      I hope you know how much you and your kind words and amazingly positive attitude have meant to me. I can always count on a constant ray of sunshine from you. Your wife is truly blessed to have found you! (and so young!) If we could just get the Skype to work here... EEK... I am sure my dad will move heavens and earth to get it working right there will never be a way to fully repay your kindness so I will just pray for you and yours and that is all I can give, but it is the best I can give. thank you <3 ~a

    2. I hope he does get it to work, It makes the nervousness so much more bearable!! Like I have told you many times. Your family and friends are truly the ones blessed to know and have you as a part of their lives!!! May the time pass by like the summer breeze and be just gentle to your family!! Hugs and Prayers!!

  2. I love this Amanda. So many people hate the war but forget that regardless of their views on the war.. they are risking their lives, for us. I honor them also, I honor your brother, I honor my friend Mark. I am so grateful for all of these men.

    1. Bandaid, Interesting that your friend is named Mark... as you may remember my brother is also named Mark. I do not agree with this war, personally anymore. This opinion does not stop me from respecting the men and women who repeatedly put their lives in danger for a cause they may also disagree with. They go because it is their job. They go because they took an oath. How many people in this world still abide their oaths? I am proud of my brother, and the men and women who go with him. Too many heroes in this world go unnoticed I refuse to let my brother and his unit go unnoticed... at least to the few who see my blog.

      always, ~a