My friend Demetria was the one who wanted me to start this blog. She'll tell you I was very hesitant to do it. I thought why, what's the point?! I have learned my friend is wise beyond her years. She knew what I didn't. She knew I could reach more people and help them through my writing (and my big mouth). We have known each other since we were 4 years old. Who would have ever thought those little girls would be in their 30s going through this adventure together? I am so blessed that our parents were friends and we were able to become and stay friends despite the geographical adversities we have.
At least once a week someone sends me an email saying thank you for sharing your story. Or thank you for showing us how strong you can be even in the darkest of days. My personal favorites always come from the wives, girlfriends and mothers who are new to this journey and find my blog. Their emails usually start with something like after I got that phone call, I just didn't know what to do and then someone sent me your blog. It truly touches my heart to know I have helped someone. Knowing that I am helping them pushes me to do better and to keep going.
You cannot imagine how hard it is to get that phone call and be told to wait. When someone you love gets hurt you want to be with them ASAP. But when they are serving overseas for our military that is not possible. So you sit and you wait and wait. You jump every time the phone rings praying it's more and hopefully better news. Then you cry from overwhelming joy when you hear your soldier's voice on the phone. You find yourself carrying the phone around everywhere you go praying it will ring. When they call and say ok it's time your soldier is going to this hospital, let's get you to them, you don't know what to do. You've waited so long and now it's finally here. Minutes seem like hours, hours seem like days and days seem like years. I could hardly sleep when I got my call. I wanted to get on that plane as soon as possible and the Army made that happen.
I am so thankful I only had to wait a few days to get to Chaz. His body handled the trauma so well they got him stateside in only 3 days and I arrived on day 4. But some families have to wait many days longer. And some don't get to talk to their soldier before they come to the states. I can only imagine how agonizing that is. I know how horrible it was for me and I only had to wait just over 24 hours to hear Chaz's voice. I have heard so many stories from others that just rip through my heart. The good news is all of our stories all end in happily ever after. However, we just have to endure one hell of a roller coaster ride to get to that ever after.
I made the choice that my happily ever after restarted January 22 with that first phone call. Chaz was alive and I didn't care what he was missing or what he looked like. He was coming home to me and our girls and that was all that mattered. I called my best friend had a pity party and then decided the pity party was over and it was time to move forward. I stood up shook it off and figured out what I had to do for our girls so I could go be with Chaz.
Our lives have been turned upside down and changed forever, but you know what. I wouldn't have it any other way. I made my peace with the changes to Chaz's physical appearance within minutes of seeing him. At that moment he and I moved forward together. Later when it was time, we added our girls in and our lives were even more complete. We still have a long road in front of us. It will be filled with joy and fun because that's the way we want it. I will not have it any other way. Nothing or no one can steal our joy!
I am so thankful God blessed me with a great family and a great life and a great brain. I have been blessed by some great DNA. My granddaddy told me to never be afraid to speak up and ask questions and I never will be afraid. If I see a way to make it better, I will voice that opinion. If I find someone who could be blessed by me answering a few questions, I will answer any and every question to the best of my ability. I received a great college education and will use that to write and speak on the behalf of our families. I will never sit and complain. I will stand up and demand better. Our troops deserve it. We have given a few interviews and we will give more. To me those interviews mean someone will learn more about our troops. Possibly they will pray for them and perhaps even come up with a great idea to help them. You never know where and when that spark will come from. It is because of that I will not stop!
This blog has become such a blessing. It is a blessing to me because I can share (and sometimes vent about) our journey with others. It is a blessing to others because they can see what we've done to make it all work. It may not work for everyone but at least it's a start for them. It is my hope that our journey is a blessing to more people than we will ever know.
Demetria thank you for being my friend and encouraging me through all of this. You are so amazing and we are so blessed to have you in our lives!! (Muah!)