A Random Image

Jett Superior laid this on you on || December 11, 2012 || 5:23 am

My father and my dad and my husband –all veterans, two of whom have served extensively in combat situations– all have distinct opinions on the overall accessibility of today’s military from a technology and media standpoint. As a former military brat and service member and wife I understand every argument they make against it.

Each and every one of them, in their own words, has expressed to me the need for a man down range to stay focused on where he’s at and what he’s doing at all times without compounding the heartache of homesickness or being distracted with any pettiness that is going on back home. I fully grok what they are saying. For the most part, I guess I don’t disagree.

As a military mom, though, things like Skype allow me to give my kid encouragement and reminders of who he is. Things like Facebook give me tender tugs telling me that though my son is a man doing a dangerous job, he is still the boy who had me sit down with him and show him how to tune a guitar and teach him about the circle of fifths and hey what key was that in and show me that chord again:

One of my favorite pictures of my father in country is of him sitting in a hut, barefooted and bare chested, pants pegged at the ankles and a harmonica slung around his neck. He’s cradling a guitar in front of him and his mouth is open in song. I own –at minimum– fifty service pictures of him, and that one gets the prized spot in my heart, because it shows something of who he is beyond the haircut and the uniform and the obvious tired that shows up in some of the photographs. It shows him to be a person grounded in something other than camouflage and orders and chasing clever, sadistic men through a wet canopy of trucked-up nerves.

I am forever telling my kids not to wish time away, but if I’m being dead honest with them and everybody else, then at present I am sloppily shoving days behind me like I’m paid to do so or sommat. This next year can’t possibly go fast enough for me. Tiny things like poorly-taped snippets of combat tedium shot in a curtained bunk warm my heart. I have to say, in all honesty, that they’d do so no matter whose kid was in them. And I’ll be damned if my brain can’t help but snag on (during my third or so viewing of that video up there) things like, “I think it would’ve made all the difference if the American public could have seen those nineteen- and twenty-year-olds with ukuleles in their hands, singing folk ditties, before they rolled home from Vietnam, before they disembarked from planes and ships bewildered and worn slap out and overwhelmed.

“America would have remembered that we sent boys in to do the work of men and sometimes the work of men is too much for anybody to fathom, even the men who are doing it.”

My son slings a rifle, my son sings songs that our people brought over to this country, my son loves his job and misses America right now. You miss him back, America, him and all the ones like him.

11 worked it out »

  1. Lisa 12.11.2012

    We do. Prayers all around.

  2. the muskrat 12.11.2012

    I liked feeling like I was still part of the US of A while stuck in Iraq. It’s why when folks asked what I wanted mailed to me the second time (when we had a BX that provided essentials), I’d say homemade chocolate chip cookies, magazines with articles about SEC football, CDs with new music (I was one of the last people I know to get an ipod), local newspapers, etc.

  3. Dawn B 12.11.2012

    Love! That song, that video, him, you, and the tears diluting my coffee.

  4. René 12.11.2012

    Love to you and Sam. What a great video.

  5. Cherie Beyond 12.11.2012

    I miss him like crazy.

  6. Cheryl 12.12.2012

    I miss him back, Jett. I miss ‘em all. The day when they’re all back home cannot come soon enough.

  7. Apryl 12.12.2012

    Damn, girl. You are a maker of all things beautiful. I love you like I’ve met you. Hope you don’t think that’s weird.

  8. Jessica Commins 12.12.2012

    Good heavens… Sending BIG, giant, heaping piles of love to that boy and all the others who are serving for us. Today and always.

  9. Chris Robinson 12.12.2012

    You are one great mom.

  10. MidLyfeMama 12.17.2012

    Well DAMN that kid just sang the hell out of that. I look at my little boy and have no idea what the future holds for him. I cannot fathom him going to another country to fight. God speed to him and to all of his fellow soldiers. And to you.

  11. EarnestGirl 1.10.2013

    I can hardly imagine how a mother’s heart can hold such wonderous little ditty beamed from afar. They say godspeed, I don’t know the why of it, but it seems the right thing. May the time pass swiftly, for you, for him, for all the ones like him, with those dancing feet unharmed.


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