Growing up, my dad was deployed a lot. He, like his father, served in the US Air Force for 26 years. He was off fighting in Operation Desert Storm while my mother was at home raising a five year old, managing the household, and pregnant with their second (and favorite) child. I always hear stories of my mom pushing a lawn mower around with a big pregnant belly. Hey, the grass can’t be longer than four inches!
I always marveled at the strength that my mom possessed through the two year long tours my dad did in Korea, deployments to the Middle East and other foreign countries, and TDY’s across the globe.
I never saw my mother break down. Not once.
She is the strongest person I know, and she has been my greatest role model.
It was not until last week that I realized just how strong my mother is. As I watched the USS Truxtun pull away from the pier, I cried. And I mean big, wet, sobbing tears. I wanted nothing more than to spend just one more day with him. I didn’t want to let go of him. I didn’t want to go home to an empty house.
If I have learned anything from this past week, it is the strength of the human soul and the power of an eternal love.
I think I now know how my mother got through the many days and nights without her husband. She remembered that soon, he was coming home. He will be back. And everything will be okay again.
I am counting down the days until I am back in his arms. And I will never ever let go. I will etch the sound of his voice into my mind, fill my lungs with his sweet scent, and never forget the warm tingles his kiss gives me.
To all of the fellow spouses of Carrier Strike Group Two, stay strong. They will be home before we know it! Remember the many spouses that came before us and the strength that they carried.
Kev, I will be here waiting on the pier for your safe return home. And I will show you the love of the universe, because you deserve no less.
May 18, 2011