In Iraq for 365

About my experiences in Iraq... the frustrations, the missions and this country... and the journey home

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Thank you

Every Friday, I write a column for a radio station in Milwaukee. Much like this site, I try to share positive news and my feelings. It’s read on the air by a very supportive news reporter. Unlike this blog, where I conceal my identity, they use my name and occasionally give out my email address. I had no idea how many people listened to my letters until Tuesday when the explosion occurred and citizens confirmed my safety. A Milwaukee t.v. station interviewed a friend of mine and her family. Her brother has an Afro, which I’ve encouraged him to grow and grow and grow. She said the television screen barely fit his whole head. That’s my boy, I thought, when I heard of the news of his Afro making the big time. She claims nothing but good things were said about me, but I hope she didn’t share the time I farted on her. That definitely wouldn’t be good PR.

Then, there were the readers of this blog, who emailed me and posted very kind comments. My mom and dad’s co-workers. The “pool” from Texas. My fraternity brothers. My fellow Okie State alums. And my co-workers in the states. People have been so supportive of my writing and my mission as an Army journalist that it truly is touching.

Soon, I will be packing my bags and heading home. Of course, I look forward to this moment, but I will miss sharing my views of the “Iraq happenings.” In a previous comment from a reader, they said I was a gifted writer. Like Steinbeck and Hemingway, I really don’t feel that way. I feel like it’s my duty to just say how I feel. I guess, my dad taught me this long ago: that sometimes you just have to express your feelings. Of course, he was talking about girls, but I think it’s applicable to all walks of like.

I would like to thank everybody who’s read this blog and or has sent me kind words. Those who post comments every day – kim, justamom, Kayla, ac – your words of encouragement go a long way. A couple days ago, I felt more anguish than I ever have. But as I’ve said before, we are here because of Americans. And it is the Americans who keep us motivated and on track. We keep photos of our loved ones on us at all times.

People think that you have to join the military to serve your country. I disagree. In my opinion, anybody who raises a family, holds a steady job or just opens the door for a stranger is serving America. Sure, servicemen are the ones who fight for freedom, but normal everyday Americans sustain our liberties by just living a good life.

To the janitor who wakes up every morning at 0300 and jumps in his car to travel to his not-so glamorous job, thank you. To the single mom who chose the road less traveled despite her friend’s recommendations of giving berth to a child while she was still a child, thank you. To the dad who worked three jobs just to raise his family, thank you. To the farmer who tilled the soil just as his father did, thank you. To you, the normal everyday American, I want to say thanks for everything. You have served America more than you will know.

63 Comments:

At 6:20 AM, Blogger Kim said...

Merry Christmas... keep yourself safe until it's your time to come home!

 
At 6:21 AM, Blogger Kim said...

You know, just a mere Merry Christmas isn't enough. I also need to say thank you. It is because of you and soldiers like you that I am free to go hunting this holiday. That I am free to shop, celebrate the birth of Christ with my family, free to have a day off of work... and so much more. Thank you.

 
At 9:08 AM, Blogger Molicious said...

I wanted to also wish you a Merry Christmas and to thank you for what you do. Also, thank you to the annonymous person who posted about your safety after the attack. I'm so glad I came upon your blog. You make me proud to be American and I thank God everyday that there are men and women like you fighting for us and fighting for the freedom we hold so dear.

 
At 9:53 AM, Blogger Bennet said...

Quite often I rant about petty things that annoy me day to day, but when I see anything about fellow Americans such as you who are out in harms way on a daily basis, I'm struck with a huge sense of humbleness, and thankfulness for every thing. I think everyone greatly respects what you and everyone else is doing.

I can't think of anything unique to say but,

Thank you , and Merry Christmas ( with hopes that you have many more actual "merry" Christmases in the future)

 
At 10:35 AM, Blogger Kayla said...

I will always support you and all the other soldiers! Most people do not really see what is going on over there unless they have a loved one or friend over there. I am the first to admit that I didn't really keep up with it. Yes, I did care about all the soldiers but I had rather just not hear about it. I am much different now since I married an Army man. God Bless you all for protecting us! You all are in my prayers every day. Take care and I'm glad you are getting to go home soon! Take a break, you need one! God Bless you and keep us all informed of how you are doing once you get out of the hell hole. :-)

 
At 11:05 AM, Blogger JUST A MOM said...

Wow, O.K. let me blow my nose and wipe my face off. Boy that was a bit much for a morning reading,yes I am fully awake now! I only found your site just before Thanksgiving, I have copied and pasted to save some of your posts. What I also did with them was to print them out for my girls to take to school and share in their history class. As I see it what all of you are doing over there will be big history. I want them to be able to feel a sence of pride in somehow knowing a guy like you fighting for them, along with sharing your thoughts along the way. Please stay safe! Also, I hear that guys comming home from over there, are a hot item with the girls back home! Maybe you will get hit on by someone you really like! Good luck, and Thank you!! I plan to still pop in. Hang in there till you get out!

 
At 1:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think if you put on a Hawaiian shirt and promise to fart on her, you should be able to take your pick of girls when you get back ;)

Merry Christmas. I hope you got enough packages before 1SG said "send no more packages" to gain your Christmas pounds like the rest of us.

From the looks of this blog, from the words of your fans, I think you're probably helping more people than you can even imagine, both Iraqis and Americans alike. God bless you.

 
At 5:33 PM, Blogger Army Mom said...

My young son...my heart, now trains to go to the "front lines" as an infantry soldier. I am by faith, a Quaker, a person who opposes war as a means of resolving conflict. Your words have given me faith...and hope that even in the most difficult of situations the Light of Christ that resides in all people can still be seen...even in the midst of violence and upset. I pray for your safe return...and the safe return of all of those who now serve in harms way.

May next Christmas see you cheering the Packers...while just to the south, I will be cheering the Bears (hope does spring eternal!)

Have a Blessed Christmas...and a Happy New Year, safe at home in Milwaukee.

 
At 10:06 PM, Blogger Bigs said...

The way you talk about farts brings back a time when I was sitting on a Couch in the living room. My Son (in the Military now) who was in 1st or 2nd grade ran up to me on the couch and whispered in my ear like he was going to tell me a secret. He clasped his hands together and whispered. I tried to concentrate on what He was trying to say about the time He turned around an farted right in my face. He jumped off the couch and was in the kitchen before I could do anything. The way the fumes from that experience must have buned that memory into me for life. A Fart
I'm sure you will share a Christmas Srory tomorrow. I will wait until then to wish you a merry Christmas.

 
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Dude. You farted on ME. Not Lu. :)

 
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