My wild spirit taps into the unknown.
I dig my toes into the dirt
and let my hair whip into the wind.
I am wild and I am free.
~Barefoot Freedom Yogi
Everyday is Veterans Day. However, on November 11, 2014 the world will become quieter in honor of our American Veterans.
As an outsider, you would take one look at me and not once think I was in the military. Many people have been surprised that I chose the military as a path. I was an 88Mike, truck driver. Actually, combat truck driver and I served in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2004. There was a point in my life when I was told to drive around Iraq and Kuwait, so I could provide gun support on convoy missions. Here is a gun and good luck!
I have always been that girl next door praying for world peace. Always trying to find ways to make the world a better place. I know it sounds cliché. So why did I join the military? Did I actually think I could find what I was looking for by joining the military? No. However, I did find a free college education, amazing friends, and the honor in serving. I stood up, raised my right hand, and took a spoken pledge. Years later, I am an American combat Veteran who still prays for world peace!
I hold honor in the history of service in my family. Many of my family members served in the military. My grandfather, Dwight, brother, Rodney, sister, Nicole, brother-in-law, Steve, and my father, Jim, all served in the military. My fellow brother, Brandon, has served in the police department and my cousin JD, who is a paramedic. My great Uncle Leo served in the Army during the Korean War. With great honor, I share the same Combat Infantry patch, 1st Calvary, with my Uncle Leo. My father, Jim, served in the Army during the Vietnam War. I did not know my biological father served until we were reunited when I was 21. I received my first letter from his wife while I was in Iraq, telling me that Jim had also been an 88M while serving in Vietnam. How is it that without knowing my father, I also felt the need to become an 88M and then serve in a war on Iraq? Pure craziness right there!
I am not for sure what I would say if you asked me, “would you do it again”? The American life is grand because we get the choice of opportunity. I do know this. Ten years ago, I served in a war at the age of 21. I returned home and knew things would never be same. Ten years later, I can finally say that I have finally found a little piece of me again. I can finally talk about the experiences to strangers. I can fight back the anger, the tears, and I can talk passed the lump I get in my throat.
Only combat veterans know the an unspoken language of what it feels like when one of their fellow soldiers will not be returning home to America. I hold my head high and feel the honor of serving and I as well, will be tipping my hat to all Veterans of all services. Everyday is Veterans Day.