A friend of mine's mom called her to check on me because of my last post.
She said I sounded "sad".
I was sad.
When I started writing I had no idea how long I would stick with this. I had no great plans or agenda. I simply began to write our story, the same way I write to my boys in their books.
I write the journey and at some point early on, I realized how important it is to write all of it. To only share joy would not be truthful. So much of why I write is to help people to understand - both civilians and members of our community. I want those entering into this life (and those outside of it) to understand the reward of living this life, the beauty that thrives in service. The joy is important and praiseworthy and needing to be shared.
But so much of me - as much as I hate to share it - believes that sharing the heartache is important and vital as well. This life is a hard, hard life. This life is a heartbreaking journey. It takes all of you. Certain moments take who you think you are and show you who you are meant to be.
The harshness shapes the joy. The tears wash away the burden.
I know that on the hardest days, in the darkest moments, there is a purpose. I know that at my weakest, I am humbled; I am reminded and grateful that I do not walk alone.
I know that there are days when all of me hurts. When all of me misses my husband. When every part of me wants to quit.
We all have those days.
Those days are not every day.
You must know hurt to understand joy. You must live with some fear to value what you are given. There is a purpose in trial.
Life is a gift. This life is a gift. It is an honor and a privilege to serve a nation. The hurt matters. Love becomes stronger. Grace becomes greater.
And every step is not taken alone.