Sunday, September 11, 2011

Never Forget...Never Surrender

I was sitting in Ms. Abel's Anatomy and Physiology Honors class my senior year of high school.
She turned the tv on as we all watched in shock.
I can't exactly remember the feelings I had, but I remember exactly where I was when I first saw.
I remember the rest of the day, every class I went to, we watched the news.

Nick was in boot camp when it happened.
His drill instructors explained what had happened and they pulled out recruits who had family or friends in NY out of the squadbay that day.
Nick's mom was not allowed on base for family day after not seeing her son for 13 weeks while he was in boot camp because security at all the bases were heightened.

I joined the Marine Corps on May 15 of 2002.
Against the wishes of my parents and teachers.
I did it behind their backs.
I had no idea that September 11, 2001 would shape my career in the Marine Corps.

I sit here today with so many emotions.
I sit here today and think about all the deployments that Nick and I have gone on since that day.
I think about all the brothers and sisters we have lost since that day.

Today has a whole different meaning to my family.
Nick and I have endured deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.
Both wars...
From the very beginning till now...

I read a blog today from one of my favorite photographers, Drew B.
She has a young son and a newborn.
Read her post (here).
We all deal with this in different ways.
For her, she feels her son is too young and not ready to know about 9/11.
I think as a mother, I know exactly how she feels.

For Nick and I, it is IMPERATIVE that Dannika understands what happened as soon as she can comprehend it.
I show her to footage on tv.
She doesn't get it, but I want her to know.
I want her to know that the uniform Nick and I put on everyday isn't the normal "business suit".
I want her to know why daddy missed her 1st birthday.
I want her to know why daddy's gonna miss her 3rd birthday.
I don't want her to be "let down" when she's older when daddy isn't at her dance recital.
I want her to know why mommy can't be home with her all day every day.

I also want her to learn an important lesson.
I want her to learn forgiveness.
I want her to learn that even with tragedy, people can bounce back and come back stronger.
I want her to be proud to be an American.
I want her to see how resilient the American people are.

I want her to use these lessons in her life.

Most importantly,
I want her to know the love of God.
Love of Country.
Love of enemies....
Cause that is what Christians and Americans do.
We love.
We fight back.
We forgive...

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