Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Honoring Heroes

I wanted to have this post up on Monday, in honor of Memorial Day. But the long weekend got the better of me. Once I got it finished, I wondered "Should I still publish this even though it's a few days late?" And then I remembered how I feel about Valentine's Day and concluded I feel the same way about Memorial Day. Every day we live we should take a moment to recognize, appreciate and thank the "Valentines" in our lives - not just one day a year! As well - everyday should be Memorial Day. It's never the wrong time to thank the people who have made my life better, easier and safer by serving in the armed forces.

Two recent events in my life have caused me to really appreciate the sacrifice that military men, women and their families make on a daily basis. A sacrifice that I will never know, but a sacrifice that molds, shapes, and allows my family to be WHO WE ARE. I love this country to my core. And therefore, these men and women who sacrifice so much to let me be me, are at the top of my list of people to adore. They allow me to sleep well at night. They allow me to raise my children in a country I continue to be proud of. They - if you really want to get down to it - have put me and my family before their own!

First - I have become blogging friends with an amazing woman named Aubrey. She is a US Navy wife and mother. I have never met someone who so freely - and cheerfully - accepts her duty to her husband and this country. She has two young boys and is ALONE on the home front, being the best mother she can be, day in and day out, while her husband is deployed. I am moved every time she thanks God for giving her this life that she leads. She truly appreciates the sacrifice she willing makes and sees it as a way to grow and honor her husband. She has taught me to look at trials in my life with a new attitude. To always try and see the bigger picture. “We know that in everything God works for good with those who love him, who are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28) Thank you Aubs - for bringing this perspective to my life on a daily basis. Thank you for supporting your husband while he is away, protecting my family. Thank you for being a fun, honest, and inspiring friend!

Second, in April I learned a girl friend of mine from church had lost her older brother in Iraq. While Caroline and I have only spoken a handful of times since our college years - I remember vividly two things about her. Her unwavering faith in the Lord, and her exuberant love for a brother 7 years her senior. To Caroline, I remember, Mark was fun, inspiring, protective and loving. I remember how scared she was when he decided to become a US Navy SEAL. Mark's most recent mission was serving as a Special Advisor training Iraqi Special Forces. In the early hours of April 11 on the outskirts of Baghdad, Mark and 7 Iraqis were killed by a massive IED that destroyed the lead vehicle in which they were riding. Mark left behind a wife and a baby daughter - as well as a family of loved ones who will forever grieve his loss.

Take an extra minute or two today to check out Aubs' and Mark's websites. Learn about them, learn from them, and stop to appreciate them. For their dedication, their inspiration, and for their SACRIFICE. Let them and their families know that these sacrifices do not go unnoticed. Miculkas and Metherells - Thank You! May God rain his blessings upon your families. May he hold you in the palm of his hand and bring you peace and comfort in trying times.


Aubs said...

Erin..I am absolutely speechless as tears stream down my face...i want you to know how much i appreciate this post and our friendship. I am so touched...thank you from the bottom of my heart!

Jennifer said...

what a beautiful, moving post!!

Joanna said...

Mark's website it extremely touching. Did you read the coincidences that went along with "Fear not..."?

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