In light of the big news this week, let’s take a moment to consider the bravery of our troops and also the courage of their mothers and fathers. Parenting a member of the military comes with its own unique pride, heartache and challenge.
Recently, one of those parents, a South Carolina mother of a Mari
ne, reached out to other mothers on the message board Marine Moms Online. In Paulette Mack’s posting, which she agreed to reprint below, she gives voice to the parents who stand behind the members of the military.
I have been a member of Marine Moms online for quite some time but never posted anything, although I read postings of others regularly. Now I feel I am in need of some extra strength....my son has been a Marine now for right at 6 years. He is my first born; I have 4 other children, all boys ranging in age from 8 to 25. I have been blessed because my son has never been deployed (not because he wasn’t willing). He has always wanted to go to either Iraq or Afghan but was not put in a deployable unit until now. His unit will be deployed to Bahrain within the next six weeks and then to Afghan in mid 2012. Although his unit has not been given a date yet, he is excited about being deployed.”
“He came home for a visit last week, he actually just left (back to California)....this visit felt different...I would find myself starring at him as if trying to burn an image of him in my mind, all the while thinking that this may be the last time I see my son again.
I tried to put that thought out of my mind, but it’s not so easy to do that. I would often read the postings of other parents and think....one day I will have to go through this and I don’t know if I can be strong when the time comes.
This may sound terrible, but my oldest son always had a strong bond, maybe a little bit stronger than my other boys...reason being, when my son was growing up he was always the one I joked and laughed with more. Whenever I would get mad at him, he would joke around and make me laugh to the point where I was no longer angry with him. We talked a lot when he was teen. He would always tell me when something was bothering him. His friends would often tell him “man your mom is pretty cool for an adult.”
My boys had sleepovers often, where I would buy enough pizza, soda, and sweets to choke a buffalo. They would stay up all night watching scary movies and cartoons. I miss those days. I am so proud of all my sons. I am very proud to be the mom of a Marine...
I just had to vent and get some things off my chest.”