Do you ever feel as if you’re straddling a frail, thin line? Or maybe standing on one side, peering over to the other, trying not to lose your delicate balance and topple over?
Sometimes it feels as if life is divided by this tenuous line. Happiness on one side and sadness on the other. Standing on the side of sadness, it seems that the line is a tall, stone wall, impossible to jump over and even very hard to scale. But eventually you hope to clear the top and bound to the other side.
But standing on the side of happiness, the line appears to be just drawn in the sand, easily crossed, sometimes without even realizing when it happens.
Or maybe the line itself moves. You might not have to change a thing, or move a muscle, but one minute you’re on the joyous side, and the next you’re on the side of despair. Wondering how you got there, and how you’re going to get back over.
Or maybe the line divides a life into two phases, one before, and one after. Never to be the same again – you can never go back. But before or after what? It’s different for each of us.
For our family, the line is being drawn by my children who are leaving the fold, venturing out on their own. Inviting danger?
Joining the military.
Right now, things are wonderful. Everyone is happy and healthy. And alive. We’ve got everything that’s really important. But things may change. My son-in-law just left for Army boot camp last week, for three months, and plans to request active duty. My son will leave for Navy boot camp next month, and plans to train to be a SEAL. I think a lot about how our lives would never again be the same if something were to happen to them, and remind myself to appreciate what we have today, be thankful for each and every day that we’re all here: happy and healthy. And alive.
Right now, things are great. But I feel as if I’m peering over the line that divides our happiness from sadness, the cheerful present from a possibly heartrending future. I’m praying for balance, not even wanting to breathe the wrong way in fear it will make me tilt. I’m begging God not to let my family unexpectedly topple to the other side.
I don’t want to contemplate life or death; I’d rather just think about what to cook for dinner.
And those are the feelings of a new Military Mom.
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