Thursday, September 1, 2005

Proudly supporting soldier husband in Afghanistan

I want to thank everyone who has sent their kind words and prayers to me and my husband. He was deployed to Afghanistan in July but hopefully he will only be gone a few months this time. We have already been through a year long deployment, so this one shouldn’t be that bad.

Brett’s time expired while he was in Iraq and he re-enlisted to Fort Bragg, NC with the 82nd Airborne. He got home about two weeks before Christmas and the following October we had our son Connor.

Brett is doing good where he is. He doesn’t get to call or email much and the times he does get to call are always short. I was so proud of him when I read the article in “The Stars and Stripes” about the drugs and saw that they interviewed him. He was so proud of his guys. They work so hard over there and they don’t get nearly the recognition that they deserve. So, I know that this was great for their morale.

He’s really lucky to have a job that he loves to do and that he can be proud of and I’m so happy to be able to share that with him. I’m proud of him everyday just going to work. Because I know each day, they are training for this very thing. Even though he may be gone for days or weeks at a time, I know that the more they train, the more prepared they will be and the safer it will be for them when they deploy.

It’s always hard to see him leave, especially now that we have our son, Connor. I get to see all the things that he is missing and I know that hurts him. But I video Connor every few days and I mail him the tapes so he won’t be so behind and he loves that. He will also miss his first birthday.

I think that will be harder for me than it will Connor though. It’s not an easy job, for anyone in the family. Wives not having their husbands with them at night to feel safe, kids not having their mothers or fathers with them for their first day of school, missing birthdays, anniversaries and holidays. It’s rough. But you have to support them because no matter how hard it is on us here, it’s harder for them over there.

They are missing everything too, plus they are in the line of fire almost daily. Sometimes you have to look at things that you miss out on and laugh about it.

We were married three years Aug. 24, and we have yet to be able to celebrate our anniversary. How many wives (other than military wives) would let their husbands get away with that? It just starts getting funny after a while, because there is nothing that anyone can do about it. That’s just the way it is and you get used to it. You just have to know that it can’t last forever and that one of these years, we will have our day. I can only dream about the year that he will be here for everything.

I support him in every way that I can and I am so proud of him for what he does. That means so much to our soldiers. He once told me “You will never know what it means to have someone at home that supports what we do.”

Even though the biggest part of the war is over, we still have guys, like my husband, fighting overseas. But you don’t see it in the news as much anymore.  Now all I hear on the news are death tolls of the soldiers or how many more soldiers they are sending over there. You don’t hear about the in-between so much anymore.

So just remember that we still have husbands, wives, fathers and mothers fighting over there and do what you can to show your support for them and their families and don’t take for granted the time that you have with your own family.

Emily Harris Norton

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