I see you. I see you in the news. I am not sure how to feel.
The place my husband has been, where so many men and women have had to go over the years.
A place that has been so much a part of my world for so very long. A place I really don’t know too much about myself.
The deployments, the endless deployments to ensure America’s freedom. The endless deployments, as we military families stay behind and hope and pray. The endless deployments, ones that didn’t bring all of our men and women home.
As I log onto Facebook this morning, I see so many thoughts and opinions about what is going on. People asking for prayers. People asking for understanding. People who are angry.
I feel weird even thinking about how to respond. I feel weird even having an opinion on it all. I wasn’t the one that went there. I wasn’t the one that put on that uniform.
But then I remember. I remember when my husband left for Afghanistan when our baby was two months old. I remember not knowing if he would be back a few months later or in over a year or even if at all.
I remember when he had to go again a few years later. During a time that hit me hard. During a time when I felt at my lowest and needed a husband by my side.
But he wore the uniform. And he went where he was told to go. I couldn’t even get to the point where I could decide if Afghanistan was worth it. He was serving our country. He was doing his part.
I have to leave that to the other people. To those, we vote into office. To the American people who make those votes. To those who have more power over the situation than I will ever have.
As a military spouse, I can’t nitpick a reason why my husband had to go away. I can’t overthink if everything we had to give up to do so was worth the sacrifice. I just can’t and I won’t. My brain won’t let me do that.
As a military spouse, Afghanistan was where my husband had to go. Just like Iraq was where he had to go. They are deployments. They are “downrange” and filled with so much emotion when we say their names.
Oh, Afghanistan…these last 20 years. Have they been in vain? Have they all been for nothing? I sure hope not.
I sure hope that in these last 20 years, good has been done. I sure hope that in these last 20 years, there has truly been a fight for freedom. I sure hope that the time and the money and the sacrifice has been worth it.
I have to believe it. I can’t think that it wasn’t.
As we turn on the news and it seems that everything is falling away, I hope we can remember what was accomplished. I hope we can truly see the good that was done.
There is so much blame. Who is really at fault?
We have questions. So many questions. As I watch some of the children of the men my husband first deployed with put on the uniform too. As I know my own children are just a few years away from being old enough to do the same. I wonder why this has become a multi-generational war?
We have questions. Should we have not pulled out? Should we have stayed longer? Maybe a few more years?
Or maybe we should have left years ago? Maybe there was a better time to do so?
And as we are living in the middle of this pandemic that doesn’t want to end, as we are living with so many other frustrations, is this yet another one we will have to add to our list of things to worry about?
Us military families, what happens in the news can and does hit us hard. Will this hit us hard? Will this mean more deployments? Will this mean longer deployments?
We know in our hearts how much Afghanistan has turned our lives upside down. We know how much pain some of our service members are in because of it. And we worry that what is going on now will cause feelings of defeat or that the military sacrifices don’t matter.
We post 9/11 military families have been through so very much. We have said goodbye way too many times. And at this point, we are wondering what will be next?
Oh, Afghanistan…these are just the words of one military spouse. One who loves and cares. And is trying to make sense out of it all.