every month, the unit puts out a newletter to us through email to let us know what’s going on with our guys and gals half way around the world. although the stories are pretty vague, there are often pictures and an occasional joke or funny article written by one of the soldiers. i got december’s newsletter in my email inbox a few days ago, and i quickly opened it thinking that maybe, just maybe, they’d let us in on demobilization plans (nope). i got all the way down to the 17th page in this .pdf document and happened to see this:
Dear Saint Nick,
Thank you for taking the time to read this. As you know, I’m once again in a foreign land in the service of my country. Most days we have just about all we need to get by. We have plenty of food, we have work to keep us busy, and we have our fellow soldiers to keep us company. So, you can probably guess what I’m going to ask for will not be too heavy for your sleigh and the reindeer to carry.
Since I’ve been here, all I’ve been able to think about is how hard it must be for my sweet wife, Cyrena, to keep up with everything and to manage it all by herself. She gets up early each day, feeds our dog and cat, walks the dog and somehow finds time to email me with something positive to brighten my day. She goes to work to teach and care for the kids at the high school where she works and she comes home each day, dead on her feet. She then goes to a gym, teaches a fitness class, and then two nights a week she teaches a night class at our local community college. She somehow finds the time to keep our home in good order and she even mails me letters and packages with lots of love and goodies inside. Most recently, she sent me a photo which I pinned up in my tent so I can see her sweet face before I go to sleep and when I first wake up. On Sundays and on Wednesday nights, she goes to our little country church to worship and to grow in knowledge and in faith, always keeping our church family updated on our situation here. She does all these things because she is the strongest and bravest woman I’ve ever known. She has kept me from falling apart and she does it all without any thanks or recognition for what a beautiful person she truly is.
Santa, this year, I want you to send her so much love from me that it completely surrounds her and keeps her warm even if snow blankets our home. I want you to send Cyrena so much thankfulness and gratitude from me that she will feel it was all worthwhile. Please give her a big box of patience to allow her to endure just a little longer until I can make it home. And most of all, tell her I am a better man because I married her.
Thank you so much, Santa, and I hope you get plenty of rest before your long ride through the night! God bless you!
well, that gave me a good cry. what a sweet message to see on the first day of the new year. i’m glad it came late and i didn’t see it at christmas time. i was already a little blue missing my honey, especially on christmas eve. but i know how much i am loved, and i have been given an unbelievable amount of peace and patience through this deployment that sometimes amazes even me. in a few more weeks, all of this will be behind us. i pray that he feels peace and comfort through the otherwise anxious and frustrating process of demobilizing and that the whole unit has safe travels home to their loving families.