Letting Guard Down
In the past year since The Husband and I have been in Kansas completing his engineering degree, I’ve noticed a million changes in my everyday life.
Foremost, my prayers have changed from, “God, please keep him safe today in the midst of everything that can go wrong on a flightline.” Or, “God, please keep him tucked in your arms wherever he may be… hold him close God, keep him with you… safe, secure.” The new prayers are, “God, keep his mind sharp today. Help him to concentrate and retain the information necessary. Give him clarity and peace of mind… understanding.”
I look back on the last year, how my life has changed. I no longer look at people with the ever-present suspicion, are you friend or foe? I’ve changed the way I pray for The Husband, no longer facing the dangers that everyday military life can bring. The likelihood of something going wrong on the flightline is huge. Prayer to keep The Husband safe has always been a necessity… until now I thought.
My world was rocked on it’s axis last week when a friend called to ask if I’d seen the paper, did The Husband know a guy who passed away in a car accident? I said, “He hasn’t said anything to me, but we’re getting ready to eat… I’ll ask him at dinner. Thanks for calling.” Immediately I called to The Husband, shakily asking if he knew the guy. “Yes, I knew him.” The Husband pulled me to him, seeing the sickness I’d suddenly encountered, held me until it subsided.
The next day I searched and researched, finally asking a dear friend of mine for help in determining the protocol we should follow. The guy was active duty Air Force, here on the flip scholarship that The Husband is on. He was 26 with a 25 year old wife. They moved here two months ago.
When we accepted this scholarship and moved here, I felt as if the danger had receded for a while. I’d let my guard down. I’d stopped worrying when The Husband is an hour late, I’d accepted the fact that he’s buried knee deep in the library… not lying hurt in a hospital because of a mishap on the flightline.
I’ve spent six of our seven years together constantly on guard, rigid with the very real knowledge that something could happen to him one day, ending my world. I’ve let my guard down.
A widow. 25 years old. She sent her husband to combat, prayed for his safe return. She was in the car with him when he left this world unexpectedly and I can’t stop my heart from breaking with sorrow for this woman I’ve never met. Our circumstances are so similar. God keep you, young woman.
The Husband and I attended the funeral this morning. I’ve been asked several times in the last few days by the civilians around me, “You never expect these things, do you?” Yes, actually. As a military family, you do expect sudden loss of life, but expecting it doesn’t make it any easier as the 21 gun salute fires through your heart or the flag of this great nation is folded, inspected and gently handed to a shocked and grieving widow.
God be with her. God be with us. May his soul rest in peace. Please God, don’t ever allow me to let my guard down. I couldn’t survive this earth without The Husband.