Friday, July 29, 2011

What happened to our patriotism?

I can't remember the last time Joe and I went to the movies, or what we saw.
Today as we stood in line for tickets, I noticed a young woman in front of me. 
She carried a sleeping baby girl on her shoulder, a over-sized diaper bag hung heavy on her opposite shoulder.  As she paid for her tickets to see Winnie-the-Pooh, with her active toddler girl running around her feet, I noticed her diaper bag was made of Army fatigues. 
I wondered if her husband was deployed, my heart sank.
She walked away and as she did I noticed her toddler girl, happy and active, was severely handicapped, I wondered if this military wife and mom was far from her family, it hit me right in the heart.
As Joe and I sat to watch the movie, I wished there was something I could've done to tell her thank you.  I don't know what I could've said, but I wished I would've said something.
We sat watching the patriotism, the uniting of our country to support our troops in a different era and I wondered, "What happened to that country?  What happened to that America?  What is wrong with me?"
The movie unfolded and at the very end Captain America knew he was going to die, he knew he was sacrificing his life to save so many other lives.
Caught in the plot, I wanted him to live, I wanted him to super-naturally win, even though it was just a movie.
Then I realized, people everywhere are wanting their loved ones to live, to make it home safe, and the truth is there aren't always Hollywood endings.
I felt guilty, I take for granted so much.  Days go by and I forget.  Men and women are sacrificing their lives, their husbands, their wives, their sons, their daughters, their fathers and mothers, their brothers and sisters for me and my loved ones. For this great country.
They aren't comic book heros, they are real heros, real people.
And what do I do to show my gratitude?
Where is my patriotism?
We left the theater and I broke down crying.
Sometimes I focus on teaching me kids as much of the great history of our country as their little minds can hold..  There is so much for them to learn and know.  I forget that we are making history and that I want them to learn from living.
It's hard to feel like anything is enough, what can I possibly do to match anothers sacrifice?  I can't, but that doesn't mean I should do nothing.
I was reminded today that I don't do enough.  We don't do enough to support our soldiers and their families.
There is always something more we can do. 
Speak out and thank them in public, pay for their dinner, take them a desert, send them a care package or a note of thanks.  Faithfully prayer for them.
Joe and I have done these things, but never enough.  Please, I encourage all of us to do better.


Wanting What I Have said...

I feel the same way. We usually will say, "we (or if I'm out alone-and since it's usually men-I'll say "my family and I) want to thank you for your service to our country." and usually, I get choked up just saying it. Our children have gotten much better at thanking our service men am women in the same way. I with you!

OneMommy said...

So very true.
Have you looked into wearing red on Fridays to show support? I forget what site I found it on, but I did a post on it a while back. Pretty sure you can Google it.