Wednesday, December 22, 2004

The Guy Down the Street

Early last night, while I was spinning around in the kitchen trying to get dinner prepared, the phone rang.

The woman identified herself, "Hi, I'm Military Wife's mom." I caught my breath. Her son-in-law, the Military Guy Down the Street, is stationed in Mosul. The woman hurried on to say that her daughter, Military Wife (also a West Point educated soldier herself) was in the hospital with an infection, probably caused by the intravenous line she had during childbirth a month or so ago. She needs continuous antibiotics for a few days to combat the infection.

The woman flew out to care for the month old grandson while Military Mom is in the hospital.

And, she said, Military Guy called yesterday and he's fine.

Then I breathed again. He's fine. He wasn't killed in the attack on the mess tent in Mosul. What a relief to all of us who know this brave little military family.

And yet, someone got a phone call yesterday with horrible news, with the worst ever news. And for those people, my heart aches. It's odd to feel relief that it was no one we know, yet sorrow for those we didn't know.

Last night, while my husband was visiting Military Mom in the hospital, my phone rang again. This time, a church man called to let me know that another church man had died a few minutes earlier. My husband had seen the dying man that morning and told me he thought he didn't have much longer to live. The breathing pattern of a dying person is distinctive and over the years, my husband has become familiar with that labored breathing.

Death doesn't take a holiday. All the more reason to hold each other tight and thank God for another day.

4 Comments:

Blogger Brandie said...

I'm glad the person you know is okay .. but is this the second time you have posted something like this? I have complete de-ja-vu here!

7:34 PM  
Blogger WordsRock said...

Amen.

9:05 PM  
Blogger Smoov said...

I know exactly what you mean about death not taking a holiday. I have worked holidays for many years and it always makes me sad to work Christmas and read all of the paperwork that comes in with the donated tissue. All of those people who die on Christmas, changing the holiday forever for their families and loved one. Too sad.

Stacy

9:31 AM  
Blogger Marguerite said...

I had similar thoughts this morning while cooking and listening to the news on the radio.

Also gave quick thanks that we don't have two feet of snow here like the stranded people in Indiana, not many miles away.

However, being stranded in a snowstorm is much more desirable than Christmas in Iraq.

10:23 AM  

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