the soldier soapbox…continued.

So one piece that I didn’t address as much as I should have last night…the notion of soldiers being unrecognized in social settings. Here’s my piece on it.

It is uncomfortable if you don’t know someone, to say something to them. But if the “someone” we’re talking about is a man or woman serving the country, then you should feel 100% comfortable (and honored) to talk to them.

We are among heroes. We walk by them every day, whether we acknowledge their presence and their efforts and their dedication…they are there.

I have recently made an effort to try and thank every soldier I come into contact with – even if it’s just a quick passing by of “Thank you for your service,” it is mutually beneficial. I feel as though I did what little I can to support them, and on the other hand, who knows how much that person needed to hear my meager words of thanks?

I can only imagine the emotional turmoil that men and women of the armed forces struggle through every day, both abroad and on home soil. Furthermore, the strain that comes with being a family member of one of these real-life heroes must be the ultimately difficult combination of fear and pride. If I can even do my one little bit to show my appreciation for these individuals or their families, then I have done a good deed for the day.

I’ve heard it said that the most dedicated people are the ones who know that what they’re doing is making a difference, and going on, that if the end result of the work they’re doing is beneficial to society, then it is all worth it. So I have decided that I will be the one to say it if no one else will:  I respect you. I commend you. I salute you. I wish I could do something more than this, but all I can do is thank you.

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About Christina Moore

Originally from Portland, Maine, I now live in Chicago and work with extraordinary nonprofit organizations to help them champion their individual causes. My heart is in the 207, and my feet are on the ground in the 312. Enjoy readmoore!
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2 Responses to the soldier soapbox…continued.

  1. Karl Marx says:

    You couldn’t be more right…bravo

  2. Rhonda B (Army Wife) says:

    Wow, Christina, you made me choke up! Thank you for your recognition of soldiers and their family members. We often don’t feel like the general public gets what we do sacrifice as military families. The Soldier often has a tremendous sense of duty and the family has to be committed to love, no matter the uncertainty or cost. As you said it is truely a combination of fear and pride.
    It is extremely sad that the soldier in the airport had to wait. That short trip home during deployment is a very anxious time for both the returning soldier and the family. Those few days at home fly by, but the worst part is toward the end when it dawns on both, that the soldier will be leaving again. So his time being shortened by a layover at the airport is, as you called it, just wrong.
    One final thought…In most larger airports, the USO still provides traveling soldiers and their families with a quiet resting place, food (they always have good cookies!) and soda, bottled water, juice and coffee, all free. The wonderful volunteers that work in the USO will also know some contact information for Military One Source and other organizations who can help them with issues like delay. They even provide very low or no cost hotel rooms if the soldier/family member has to be overnight. Unfortunately, some of the younger, inexperienced soldiers don’t know about this service, but now that you do, next time you see a young soldier waiting or looking uncomfortable you can ask them if they know about the USO. If they don’t, they can ask airport workers where it is located. And thanking them for their service goes along way in lifting their spirits too! Thank you for thanking them because we love our soldiers and can not show our appreciation enough.
    P.S. If you encounter any soldier who needs assistance that you believe needs addressed quickly, any time day or night, you can contact me via email or I can give you my number privately, I am a military family advocate and can often provide some help even if it is just to direct them to right agency or to be an understanding listener.

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