veteran’s day



I dream of giving birth to a child who will ask, “Mother, what was war?”

~Eve Merriam

“So Katie,” I said. “Do you know what tomorrow is?”

“Umm. Hmm. Oy yeah, it’s Veteran’s Day!”

“Yes, baby. Do you know what that means?”

“It means no school! Hooray!”

“Well, yes, little love. It does. But it’s far more than that. Do you now WHY there’s no school on Veteran’s Day?”

She scrunched her little nose – that signature Mama move, now so much more hers than mine.

“Baby, Veteran’s Day is a day to honor those who have fought for our country. A day to stop and say thank you to the brave men and women who have sacrificed so much to protect us and to keep us safe.”

“Oh yeah! Like Uncle Paul. I told my friends at school that I know a soldier in Afghanistan, Mama. I told them he was like family because he’s one of my mom and dad’s best friends.”

“That’s right, love. And don’t forget Rhema and Hope’s Daddy. He’s over there too.”

Her face got very serious. “That’s right, Mama. He’s there too. In Iraq.”

To those of you still fighting, our hearts and our prayers are with you. Be safe. Come home soon. Know that our love stretches across the seas and over the mountains and through the desert sands to reach you.

To your families we say, ‘You are not alone. If you don’t tell us what you need we’ll figure it out for ourselves and show up on your doorstep. We simply refuse to let you go this alone.”

To those who have lost everything – There are no words to honor your sacrifice. All we can share is our overwhelming sorrow and gratitude.

To the wounded – to men and women like Jeremy, whose biggest fight may be the one that comes after the war – know that we will never be able to repay you, but we will try.

“Mama,” Katie said later. “I’m sad for the soldiers. I wish they could come home.”

Me too, my little love. Me too.

16 thoughts on “veteran’s day

  1. Jess,

    Thank you.

    We Soldiers are so appreciative of the amazing support from our fellow Americans. It makes all the difference in the world.

    Brandon (Rhema and Hope’s Daddy)
    Mosul, Iraq

  2. Thank you so much for the reminder of what today really means! You said it so beautifully and you and Katie truly put it into the proper perspective. If you speak to Paul, please tell him a special “Thank you” for me, too!


  3. Brandon,

    So happy to hear from you! We are praying for you and checking in on the family back here in Boston. Take good care and know how much your service means to our family.


    Thank you for this..

  4. Pingback: What she said « Maternal Instincts

  5. Also sending my deep gratitude to Uncle Paul, Rhema and Hope’s dad, and all those past and present who have sacrificed so much to keep us safe and free.

  6. HI
    I want to honor ALL American veterans, both living and dead for there loyal service to our country. I deeply appreciate all of the sacrifices they have made in the lives to keep our country free. Please listen to my original song “Remember America” and pass this along to honor our Gladiators!!!
    Thank You,
    Victoria Blackie

  7. Dearest Jessica,
    As usual, you have a way of putting the most important things into the most poignant light. Katie as always, is delicious.
    Something however, that has bothered me beyond all things about our country is that while we make much of our troops when going to war, we seem as a country to almost forget them when they come home by not providing them with the care and advantages they missed while serving us. We must offer them the BEST ongoing medical care and emotional support without their having to jump through the hoops to get it. Educational opportunities should be standard offerings to them ( ie GI bill). They have been our protectors and we should be here for them when they come home.
    I love you for the mommy you are and for the best daughter ever.

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