We are on the single digit count down to graduation day!! I can't tell you what an exciting event this is!! Again, reflecting on the many many lessons learned and the experience we've had with our son...all I can say is we are so blessed!! On a post on the E 1/19 Company Facebook page, I asked parents and loved ones to share something that they or their soldiers have learned during this 10 week experience. The response was overwhelming! I wanted to share a few of the comments with you.
" I've learned that even though we may not understand something that we can accept it with our whole heart and give love and support...then from the accepting the understanding will follow. (Does that make sense?) I've learned patience. I think Lance and I have both learned that love really can be thicker than blood as we've seen total strangers become close family. Neither one of us could have done this without ya'll. In watching my son I've learned to follow your heart...it won't ever lead you astray. I've learned prayer works!!! And I thank you all for your prayers on our behalf. I've learned it's okay to cry...as long as you remember to laugh as well. Find joy in the journey!!! Thank you all for your love and support!!!"
"I have learned patience and how to be more dependent on myself. I know that sounds silly, but before my hubby left he took care of everything. And now that he hasn't been here, it has been up to me..."
"Dreams do come true, with faith and perservence. Sacrifices are made with everyone involved and support from home is very important. Life changes everyday and even though a loved one may be far away, they are always close in your heart. Good things can come from change, and you can literally find unknown strength in your weakest moments. Although my life will never be the same in the day-to-day life with my son, I know he is doing something he loves, he'll be awesome at it, and I can't wait to see what the future brings. There is diversity in this world and even though we all come from different walks of life, we have learned to pull together and support one another, even though we have never met - that's kinda cool!"
"I have learned to to take one day at a time. I have learned to be supportive. All soldiers need that from their family and friends. I have gotten strong. I am an Army Girlfriend and that's a hard job but I have learned that being away from each other just makes everything stronger. I have learned that we have family and friends that we've never met that our soldiers have been with them since May 21st and they will always be close in our lives..."
"For him, I think how to be part of a team. For me, patience."
"Patience!!! Lots of it. I would always be so "ancy" when my soldier said he had a surprise for me and would eventually break him down to the point where he would tell me the surprise early. Waiting for his letters and stalking my mailman (who by the way comes at inconsistent times anywhere between 1-6) has allowed me to gain that much needed patience. I've also learned to not take a single moment for granted and cherish all the little things. Whether it's being able to have a milkshake or to enjoy each other every second I'm with him.... Every letter I get makes me fall deeper and deeper in love with my soldier and despite only being 19, has given me the strength to keep strong for both of us."
"I have learned that distance does not create void especially when you are talking about the heart. We always knew our son was our world, I think now he truly knows this. We have all learned to appreciate the small stuff we once took for granted."
"I have learned that I am stronger than I thought."
"I have learned to write a letter, and I have learned what time they empty the mail box so that way my letter makes the cutoff. In this world of technology, I have learned how to rely on the mail carrier who has my message waiting for me and not my cell phone..."
"...That the tears, sweat, integrity, morals and character I have tried to instill on him as a child was not in vain. That when I didn't think he was listening to me, he really was...that he has developed into a wonderful young man that has goals, dreams, loves is country, family, adores his mom, and reverences God... I've also learned in this process to trust and open up to strangers and become part of a family (because that's what we are) that will truly embrace, support and uplift each other as we accept the path our soldiers have taken. We've accepted each other blindly and unconditionally."
"...I cried when I received my son's letter Saturday, not because I was sad. Simply because he has grown into a man in the time that he has been away..."
"...I've learned that I can rely on my Army family when every one has left and I felt alone. But I've learned to trust God. And that love conquers all if worked hard for. I've also learned determination and how to be independent, and perseverance and have a lot of hope."
These are just a few of the many, many comments. In your prayers tonight will you please bless those who are sacrificing so we can enjoy the freedoms that we have. Bless our soldiers, their families, and their loved ones.
Be Safe - Be Good - Be Strong