I am a planner. One of these days I'm gonna learn!
I write in pen. Yeah, still not giving it up. I have issues ; )
I am not patient. Let's talk about this one.
I quietly made copies in the office without saying a word. I could hear people talking in three different rooms.
"I don't understand why it took so long." (I may have slightly shook my head. Ten Years.).
"It seems kinda fishy. Everyone forgot about this man and 'poof' campaigning starts and he's suddenly dead." (I know I made a face at this one).
"Don't you think Marines would have gone in instead of Navy seals? It doesn't make sense for seals." (I may have laughed to myself here).
"I don't think he's really dead." (Deep Breathe. Lord, I hope that's not true).
"Bring 'em back. They finally got him." (I think I froze.)
"At least they can finally start bringing them home." (I looked down and realize I copied the same page six times).
The main woman saying these things didn't know me. She didn't know who I was. She didn't know who my husband is, what he does, where he is right now. She had no idea how much I wish it didn't take ten years (longer if you think about the five years before that he was America's number one enemy and I'm gonna go ahead and guess that he was being searched for somewhat then). She had no idea that I could not stand to hear the very idea that the death of that man is a political ploy. I cannot believe that. No matter what you think, I cannot hear that. I cannot think that. I cannot believe that. I simply won't. That may be the number one thing to never say to me. I won't lie, the misunderstanding of what unit/branch/etc. would go in for a mission like this made me laugh. For all we know it could've been some unknown entity working in conjunction with the seals - "the ones without letters" as my husband calls them. These are things that the American people don't need to know, and probably don't know for real, and I'm okay with that. They got him. That man is dead. That's all I care about.
"At least they can finally bring them (the troops) home." Alright, Lord, hold my tongue.
A friend posted on this blog once: "The stability of one's country can be judged by how much its citizens know about their military." Goodness me, we must be pretty, darn stable. But I keep this quote in the front of my mind. It helps to hold my tongue.
I try to remind myself: It's not their fault. They don't understand. They don't know any better. When at the same time the other part of my brain (the easily frustrated, impatient part) is answering: Isn't it though? Shouldn't they though? Well, why not?
And then it happens, the image of someone else is placed in my head saying: This war is pointless. They die for nothing. Bring them all home, now. And I shake my head because that image He has placed there is a reminder. It was me - half a war ago.
We are all going to hear a lot of this over the next several months. I have sadly even heard a little of this from the press. People are not going to understand that not all of the tens of thousands of troops were searching for this man. This one man was not all that this war is about. It is about the hundreds - thousands - who believe as he did, plan as he did, that we need to be destroyed, that our "kind" is not worthy of life because of the freedoms and beliefs we have. The tens of thousands of troops who were not hunting this man will continue their mission - just as they did when he was still alive. This is not over. Their missions still matter. This did not change much of anything.
We all choose the lines that we draw, or erase, or cross over. I have seen harsh lines drawn between civilian and military - not by the soldiers, by the spouses - where a line shouldn't exist. We can't help others to understand if we do not have patience, if we are not graceful, if we are not calm. People will never understand if we remain an "us" and "them". Think about how you will react, how you will respond, how you will choose to teach or not teach. Because sometimes your answer may just be "no," but sometimes you may see it in their well-meaning eyes that they want to understand. When they cross your path something different may be better, maybe a "No, but would you like to know why?"
Because maybe you haven't heard it directly yet but it is coming. We all know it's coming. Know how you are going to respond, or not respond, but be prepared because every moment is an opportunity to erase a little bit of the line between "us" and "them".
"Is your husband coming home now?"
It's coming. Lord, give me patience.