I realize it isn’t much.
But it’s all I have to offer.
Which is why I call my dad. Every year. On Veteran’s Day.
To say… “Happy Veteran’s Day, Dad!”
Happy. Veteran’s. Day. As if there is such a thing.
And my dad, whose voice always cuts out in disbelief, squeaks, “you’re calling for me?”
And I am.
I always am.
Because I want him to know how grateful I am for his bearing the cross he bore. The cross he still bears. The cross he has carried for 46 years.
How grateful I am for his service and sacrifice. To our country. When it was neither popular nor appreciated.
How grateful I am for my dad–and my mom–hanging in there by their fingernails. Even when their marriage took trips to hell and back. Even when anger and fear led to misunderstanding. Even when the perks from serving were memory loss, Agent Orange, denial and PTSD.
I’m grateful for my parents who are still shattering the miserable odds of Vietnam veteran marriages. Almost 47 years later.
And that because of the grace and the power of Jesus Christ they are healing. And forgiving.
Thank you, Veterans.