Reflections on US Veterans Day: This beautiful reflection was originally a Facebook post by the author and I am so thrilled to feature it on this blog. The author is awesome and she has an awesome family!
I don’t really remember the day he left. But I remember the day he came back. I remember standing around, holding that poster, my sweaty hands getting the edges a bit damp. I don’t remember if there were a lot of people there. But I remember being told to not move around so much as we waited. I thought we’d already been waiting forever. It’d been so long…
Finally, after what I thought had been hours and hours, people started appearing. Strangers, whose faces I can’t remember. Then, suddenly, the tops of those brown boots came into view. I couldn’t see more than the tops of his shoes, but I knew it was him. I was off and running. I practically flew up those stairs and into the arms of the only father I’ve ever known: Tim French. He was finally home.
My family has some military history. We have ancestors who fought in the Revolutionary War, some in the Civil War, my grandpa and his brother were active during World War II. I even have a great uncle who won the Medal of Honor for outstanding service during World War II. And while all of that is great and wonderful, none of that necessarily impacted me. I wasn’t there waiting for them to come home. By the time I came around, all those wars were over. The medals and flags had been boxed up, and people were talking about the Middle East.
Then, one day, Dad left.
But I remember he called me on my birthday. For my 7th birthday, I wanted to go to a tea room (classy, I know), and I remember my mom interrupting me pouring myself hot chocolate with this excited look on her face and handing me her cell phone. It was my dad. The next day I got flowers in the mail with a teddy bear. I remember Mom reading his e-mails to us kids from that now ancient laptop.
Those were the times that impacted me, because it was real then. War was suddenly so much more real. Even though Dad wasn’t technically in combat, any American soldier in the Middle East was in constant danger and threat of harm. But he did it, to serve God, country, and family.
And where would our country be without those who served?
Thank you, Dad, for everything. You’re the greatest hero I know.
Guest author: Leanna French