Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Veterans Day

I had a very nice Veterans Day. I spent time with my family. I went back to work on Monday. SGT F and I spent the day running down applicants and holding interveiws. At lunch we stopped at a Waffle House off the Bremen exit of I20. We came in and the waitress was very nice. I ordered breakfast and drank coffee as SGT F and I role played as recruiter and prospect. The coffee was good and the steak, eggs and grits was even better.

A few people wandered in and nodded a hello at us. A couple walked to the jukebox and slipped a few dollars in. As the selection played I drank my coffee. Lee Greenwood's "Proud to be an American" always chokes me up if I begin to think about it so I concentrated on my food. Silence as the new selection begins. Toby Keith's familiar voice singing "American Soldier" floated through the restaurant. SGT F grew quiet. I remarked that it was such a great song and I cried through the whole video the first time I saw it. I reflected on the words that mean so much to me

I'm just trying to be a father
Raise a daughter and a son
Be a lover to their mother
Everything to everyone
Up and at 'em, bright and early
I'm all business in my suit
Yeah, I'm dressed up for success
From my head down to my boots

This may sound really strange.... I love my uniform. I feel a sense of pride as I lace up my boots. I make sure I am squared away and present a good image to the public. I don't want to give anyone a reason to look down on the Military. I feel that in a very small way I am representing those who are serving in combat.

The song continues...

I don't do it for the money
There's bills that I can't pay...

Ain't that the truth I chuckled to myslef.

I don't do it for the glory
I just do it anyway
Providing for our future's
my responsibility
Yeah I'm real good under pressure
Being all that I can be

There is quite a bit of pressure being a recruiter. I can see the condescending looks from school counselors. I notice the tone that says they think the Military is the last resort for most people. They don't understand WANTING to serve your country.

And I can't call in sick on Mondays
when the weekends been too strong
I just work straight through the holidays
And sometimes all night long.

And my family pays the price too. Grace plays "recruiter" now. She stands in front of our desk with her Barbie phone saying "You need to be National Guard!" She plays with her Barbies and the Mama Barbie "Has to go to work. Don't cry! I be back soon."

You can bet that I stand ready
when the wolf growls at the door
Hey, I'm solid, hey I'm steady,
hey, I'm true down to the core

Countless faces of soldiers cross my mind as I think of those serving in combat right now.

And I will always do my duty
no matter what the price
I've counted up the cost,
I know the sacrifice
Oh, and I don't want to die for you
but if dyin's asked of me
I'll bear that cross with honor
'cause freedom don't come free


I'm an American soldier,
an American beside my brothers
and my sisters
I will proudly take a stand

Tears start down my face

When Liberty's in jeopardy,
I will always do what's right
I'm out here on the front line
Sleep in peace tonight
American soldier, I'm an American soldier

Sgt F shares about waiting to be reunited with his family after 12 months in Iraq. He is in a barracks and sees the video to this song. He gets choked up just sharing about it. "I remember thinking of my daughter and what it would be like to hold her again...." He shakes his head and stares out the window.

As the song ends we get up pay our bill and leave. We hear several shout "Thank you!" after us. Thank you, Lord, for those who appreciate what it means to serve. Thank you, Lord, for allowing me to serve.


Blogger tinkhamfamily said...

That was one of the most beautiful posts I have ever read! God bless you and all the military of our wonderful country who are selflessly laying their lives down for us!!! May God bless you and keep you safe! I am a die-hard Toby Keith fan, and his patriotism is one of the many reasons that I love him so much. He says what he means, and means what he says!! God bless you!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006 9:59:00 PM  
Blogger My Music Highway Project said...

Beautiful... just beautiful!

BTW... just a reminder that you are this weeks My Music Highway Project Special Guest...

Wednesday, November 15, 2006 10:30:00 PM  
Blogger Ashley said...

I also get choked up anytime I hear American Soldier... In fact, just reading the words along with your narration brought a tear to my eye. I can't help but think of how difficult being away from family for extended periods of time can be, my husband only tells me he misses me, doesn't elaborate much on it. I know he's taking it hard, but I can't fathom how much harder it is for them. At least here, we have constant reminders of our loved ones serving our country. Thank you for all you do, and thank you for your wonderful blogs. I will be adding a link to your page on my blog.

Thanks again!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006 11:38:00 PM  
Blogger SGT Lori said...

Ashley, Hang in there girl!! Tell your husband there are lots of people praying for him.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006 9:20:00 PM  
Blogger Katy said...

Very late to this party, but this blog was so well done, Sgt. Lori. I've heard the song a million times, but I teared up again, too. Hope you folks know how very much you're appreciated.

P.S. You know me as MissB at a few other blogs, but your beta shows my real name due to my account.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006 9:39:00 PM  

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