So here I am a little over a year since the knock on the door and my world fell apart. Some days I have learned to smile and even laugh again. Not as completely as I once did but still they smiles come now. And sometimes they come with guilt.
Two very wise men have touched my life in the past month or so. One gentleman was with the SAS and he spoke of how he lives his life so that in the next he can look into the eyes of those friends he fought beside who did not come home and tell them without a doubt he did his best to honor them. The second gentleman was a WWII veteran, Medal of Honor recipient and 99 yrs old. His words struck my heart through. ” We can only mourn our fallen. We honor them by taking care of those who come home especially our wounded” It is those two thoughts, beliefs, that I have tried to live this past year by. Although only recently put into words for me.
We knew the moment they spoke the words that day there was no more we could do for Micheal but mourn and grieve. Which is why our first question was ” Was anyone else hurt?” from the looks on the Sgt and Chaplain’s faces I don’t think it is a question they get often. To this day I am grateful now on my son’s brothers were seriously hurt. Although I have found out since that some of the injuries they received were not as minor as they would have likes me to believe. All the same I have hug each of them and they are safely home now.
The smiles come more frequently now. Laughter is not as forced as it once was. I suppose we have found that place in life other Gold Star families have described to me as “the new normal”. I have found myself on a path that I actually enjoy. In a way I share it with Micheal… I wish he were here truly…. but he does inspire me in what I am doing now. And I think he is sitting up there grinning and putting people and events in my life that will help me heal and grow.
Thanks Pokey.. I love you. I would trade it all for one more hug kiddo.