Am I the only one who thinks about something they do and then put it aside like it really was no big deal. Or compares it to someone else’s story and then thinks that their story doesn’t matter. When we look at the highlight reel of someone else’s life it makes it hard to remember that is only part of their story.
I recently met someone at Disneyland who was wearing a baseball cap that showed they were a military veteran. For some strange reason, I think when I see people wearing military veteran caps they must have served 20 years. When he said he had served 3 years in the Army. I was…well…shocked. In my mind, I thought, but you are wearing a hat saying you are a veteran. And obviously he was correct, serving 3 years in the Army makes you a veteran.
Why was I so surprised?
Why do I feel like my service of six years doesn’t allow me to wear a hat that says Air Force Veteran?
I guess I should tell you the end of the story. He didn’t really ask me any questions about my service, but shortly after we started talking my husband showed up after parking the stroller. And the Army veteran found out my husband is currently serving in the military. He asked him all kinds of questions about what he did and where he had been. But me? No, he didn’t ask me anything about my service.
It kind of annoyed me that he didn’t ask me about my service. My husband has never deployed and although he makes a lot of sacrifices serving in the military he isn’t the only one.
Women have been serving on the front lines
Women have been serving on the “front lines” of war long before it was legally written out. My job took me off the base and interacting daily with the local people. The wars of today have changed where the front line is. You don’t have to go to a battle line, sometimes the battle lines come to you.
You don’t even have to leave the safety of the base to find danger. There are regular rocket attacks and suicide bombers attempting to break the perimeter of the base. And there are men and women fighting this war effort and dying. Last month, I shared deployment stories and the people who answered my call for stories were mainly women.
And these women were doing amazing things. Right alongside their male counterparts. And the weird part is that most women didn’t feel discriminated by the cultures that didn’t allow women to hold jobs or to have a form of status. The countries we are fighting wars in know more about what the women of the US military are doing. More than the people back home know.
So, do I deserve your thanks on Veteran’s Day?
Of course, the answer is yes!
But I’m requesting more than just a “thank you for your service.” Take the time to read one, two or all of the stories from my series last month. We all sacrificed something when we took the oath.
Will you take time out of your day to hear our stories?
Here is the link to all 31 Deployment Stories.