It’s Hard to be a Mom
It’s very hard to be a Mom. I find myself often looking back over the years to see if I have done a good job or not. Have I helped prepare my kids for life’s challenges? Have I instilled good values? Will they overcome my failures? In the end I do as all parents who love their kids do, I stand to one side and allow them to be the people they are and hope I am and can support them in the way they need me to do. As all parents do, I try to hide my fears. It is very hard at times and I don’t always succeed. But, I still keep trying and I do the best I can! I allow them to be the adults I helped them become with the help of God and many others along the way and their own efforts!
My daughter wants to be a Marine pilot. She graduates from college this spring with a degree in Criminal Justice. She has worked full time and gone to college full time to make this all happen. She gives blood every time she is allowed by the blood bank. She participates in walks for cancer and other such causes. She works out at a gym every chance she can. She is growing her hair to the length she needs it to be to donate hair for cancer victims. She has spent her time in the summer working with at risk kids as a volunteer. She certainly has the character and determination it takes. She also has 15/20 vision. She goes shooting with a veteran friend and her brother to hone those skills. Whether or not she will be allowed into the program to be a pilot, she is determined to join the Corps. As much as her dreams bring out my motherly fears, I am extremely proud of my daughter. I know she can do anything she wants to do or become anything she desires.
She is fearless to many I know who know her. But, inside she feels fear like anyone else. She just channels her fears into action and refuses to let fear rule her life. She is not impulsive and irresponsible by any means. But, she sets goals for herself and works hard to achieve them. She is also adaptive when her goals prove misdirected. Due to her hard work, her personality, sense of responsibility, and ability to lead, she is already being sought as executive management material.
My greatest fears are that she will succeed and become a Marine or Marine pilot and wind up killed or captured by the enemy. The enemy’s treatment of women is well documented for prisoners. I am a four year USMC Vietnam Era veteran. I understand what motivates her to serve. So it makes me very ashamed that deep inside me, as much as I want her to succeed, I pray for failure. I suppose this too is a normal parent’s reaction!s
But, my greatest reason for this silent prayer is not all the reasons I just mentioned. My greatest reason is seeing our Congress and that element of our society that wants to cause our troops failure in action again as they did during Vietnam. The idea of my beautiful daughter dying senselessly like so many others in this war if these people succeed again to force our nation to cut and run sickens me. Over fifty thousand of our men and women died for “nothing!”
My daughter may or may not join the Corps. She has also considered becoming a Police Officer or one of several other law enforcement occupations. My family has already lost one loved one while in service to our country. He was a police officer who joined the Naval Reserves after 9/11. We struggle as a family five years later, all of us, with his loss. I am sure all the loved ones of the lost likewise anguish over their loss. But, to have that loss be marginalized by a nation and Congress with no spine or backbone is the real tragedy of this war or any war!