This week has been a little rough emotionally.
I found out my brother will not be attending my college graduation. As us siblings know (and trust me I know) the military comes first. Never make plans or have high hopes it usually gets messed up. That's the military for you. I've had a feeling that a deployment would be the reason my brother couldn't come to my graduation, this time its a mandatory class he has to take for with his until. Just so happens its the exact day and time of my graduation.
Over my brothers nearly 11 years in the military I couldn't tell you how many birthdays, parties, funerals, soccer games, dances, and holiday's he's missed. During the three years of middle school and my Freshman year of high school I saw my brother for a total of 30 days. So now that he's national guard and not deployed or on orders, I have been ecstatic about having him here for such a big event in my life. Sadly, that wont be happening.
I cried when I found out, and if you know me I'm really good at keeping things in, and I did this time until I was alone. I have not been this devastated in a very long time. But during these tears I realized somethings:
1. My brother would not be happy with me crying, this has been my life for 10 years, I should be used to it now.
2.In the book Service by Marcus Luttrell (I highly recommend, I'll due a post about it later) there is a Warrior Queen section about the wives at home. One wife talked about how there is always someone who has it worse. And that True.
3.I've always wanted a KIA bracelet to honor those who have lost their lives in combat. I found a website with a list of every combat loss for Iraq and Afghanistan, that was a very sobering experience. I went through every page of the Afghanistan section finding a Navy Corps Man my brother picked up on his last Medevac deployment. 45 pages of names. That's over 2,000 military personal that's just Afghanistan. There's another 85 pages for Iraq, that's over 4,000.
5. There is a Facebook page for Gold Star Siblings (siblings who lost someone in the war) That was just as humbling, sad and eye opening.
It took me sitting and feeling sorry for myself to realize how truly blessed an lucky I am. My brother has come home three times. He wasn't injured or had any permanent problems. He's alive and my family remains whole. Yes he wont be there for my graduation and that will hurt, but he is safe. What more can I ask for as a military sibling.
Feeling down, take time and find the positives in your life.
I truly am one of the lucky ones.