Another couple days have come and gone. Little has changed, but I didn’t go back to Iraq. That will come back to haunt me later, but for now its what the family needs. Linda’s still in the hospital. The chain of command in Iraq has all the proof they could have asked for. I am a little bitter at them for creating the stress that may have caused my wife to loose control. Tonight she was not emotionally sound and she is having a hard time dealing with the captivity.
But like usual, I’m getting a little ahead of myself.
Yesterday, I was very depressed and feel quite alone. Because of the weight of everything that has happened and the thing yet to come, it was hard for me to deal with anything or anyone. It was almost like I was Linda. I had phone calls from family that I couldn’t face or deal with. I think part of it is because I have really big decisions to make about my marriage, my children and my career. I feel like I’m at a crossroads of a sort; one that I just don’t have enough information to make the decisions. I had my visit with Linda was simply an hour of playing cards. I wound up sitting on the sofa, just thinking; after the kids went to bed.
The kids and I had plans to get up really early this morning for a road trip and to go hiking. We wound leaving late because my Commander called. He told me that:
I would be extended only 2 days on emergency leave.
That I would be reassigned to the rear detachment.
That I would have only 30 days to provide a family care plan that did not include my wife.
That if I accomplish that then I would be returning to Iraq.
That if I failed, and then I would be facing a termination of my career.
And that he still needs my help with his change of command.
A very kind person, he is not. Oh well, add that to the stresses I am already facing. Please believe me when I say, the US Army is usually not this bad, but sometimes you work for someone that has too much power for everyone’s health. I have always thought, good out weighed the bad. Until now, maybe! This I will deal with in the days to come.
We did leave late for the Adirondack Mountains but still within enough time to make it enjoyable. It took about 2 hours to make it to Placid Lake and with only few extra stops in route. We found the trail that we love to hike and had a quick snack before we started. It was a very slow pace, for Stella’s and Storm’s sake. I didn’t realize how out of shape the poor dog was. I don’t think anyone exercises her, while I’m gone.
The trail had a lot of trip hazards and I was careful to keep an eye on Stella. We captured several good pictures. We took a few breaks that were filled with laugher. The hike was a total of 8.5 miles round trip. No enough for me, but for Stella it was more then she expected. Storm had enough after about mile 6. She lay down and refused to go any further, giving us another reason for a break. Keri, who asked for this trip, was doing pretty well. She only complained about how much she would be feeling it tomorrow. I am really proud of both of the girls. I could tell that they enjoyed the hike, because they rarely complained of anything.
Once we mad it back to the trail head, we cleaned ourselves up. Made sure Storm had another chance for food and water. Then we packed up and headed home. What does it mean when Keri, Stella and Storm all fall asleep within 15 minutes during the trip home?
Once we arrived back home, Keri and Stella to charge of cleaning out the car for me. They helped to make sure that I was able to leave in time for the trip to the hospital. Linda was in a sour mood and crying when I arrived. I felt awful for having such a wonderful time out, but at the same time I realized something important. Would I have been comfortable with making the trip in the first place, if she was home? The truth to that question is a bit disturbing. It will also be the question I must sleep on.
By the end of the night, Keri had given me one of her latest poems to share.
My daddy is an American Hero.
He is my hero.
And a hero such as him needs hope
And faith to get him through
Where his love ones are far away
And out of his reach.
He wants to scream but all he gets
Is a raindrop.
He shows courage for his country
And for his family that await
For his safe return
He shows love even when
He is not home.
I am proud to call him my
Father and my hero.
He fights for what he thinks is right.
My tears only fall when I want
Him home the most.
Or hurts the most.
I know he cries too
Because I know how much
He wants to be home with his
And I also know that when he comes
Home the tears are going to
Come down not for sadness.
But for happiness.
Just keep your head high, Dad.
You should be home soon.
I want to make him feel better
But all I can do is be
Strong for him.
He is our father.
He is her wife.
He is the family’s hero.
And he is an American hero
Who shall fight
And shed tears for family and country.
But these are not any
Kind of tears
They are tears of a soldier who has
seen more then any person should.
He sheds the Daddy’s tears.
This poem is for all the Soldiers, Mother and Fathers alike, that are currently fighting over sea and the families they have to leave behind. God Bless the U.S.A Soldiers.