I never really thought about what life was like for soldiers (all military really) when they were home. I knew life would be unspeakably hard while deployed, but little did I know the freedoms they give up while at home too.
These men and women are fighting for our country. I am not going to get into what I think about the policies or the war. If you know me well you know how I feel about it all. Put the war aside for a minute. These people make the decision to serve this country. They do what they are told because that is their job. Some fight hard and lose much. Michael, thank God, did not have to do that. He will be forever changed by the things he saw and the ramp ceremonies he participated in. A Ramp Ceremony is a solemn memorial for a soldier killed in a war zone. The ceremony can take place at an airfield near or in a war zone, where an airplane is usually waiting nearby to take the soldier's remains home.
We have been not-so-patiently waiting for Michael's vacation plans to be approved. The army has the right to deny Michael the ability to go home for vacation. Think about that for a second.
I get why they have this in place. I know there are people who shouldn't be traveling and those who have screwed up repeatedly shouldn't be given the same perks as those who do their job everyday. Michael doesn't fall into either of these categories.
He works hard, does what he is told right the first time and is not a flight risk. As much as I would like to go home and stay there, he will honor his contract until the second it is up. He is just *that* guy.
There is no reason for him to be denied, but the waiting is getting to me specifically. He is thrilled about the thought of going home. Even if it is only for 10 days. The fact that he is thrilled and making plans, makes me want to make plans and be thrilled right with him. :)
We all miss home. We all miss our families and friends. We miss the fun, food and freedom that Texas represents to us. We are all excited.
So when you think about the military think about everything that they go through during daily life. They are technically not allowed to have stubble on their face or get tattoos. They are limited to where they can go without written permission. Everything in their lives can change with a moments notice. Plans can be cancelled, birthdays can and will be missed, and vacation plans hang in the balance while the higher ranks make their decisions.