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An Open Christmas Letter to Our Heroes

Christmas Army Boots

Yes, my husband still has his boots.

I’ve been dealing with a lot of stress lately, both at home and at work. This is my life. I have not been writing on my novel because of it. I feel sad, tired, and just downright horrible. But when I got a break at work the other day, I managed to put together a blog post about my son turning ten. While this was not any progress on my novel, it was writing. And it felt good.

With things getting more and more stressful in my life, I needed a release of some sort. I’ve managed, again, to write. This time, I’ve composed a Christmas letter to our heroes and plan on sending it out to them. (I didn’t plan my time very well.) While it may not make it to the Red Cross on time, I wanted to post it here for anyone happens upon it and needs a little encouragement.

My Dearest Service Member,

Today I wanted to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Joyous New Year.

I know you may not feel like you could enjoy this time of year right now. In fact, you are probably struggling with your recovery each and every day. You have a long road ahead of you and you don’t think it will get better.

You will have your ups and downs. And right now, you may be having more downs than anything. But please remember, everything happens for a reason. I don’t know if you believe in God or not, but He has a plan. If you don’t believe, then there is always a reason why things are as they are. You may not realize it now. Or a month from now. Or even a year.

Remember to look for the positive in all of it. No matter how small. The positives are what will get you through. Even if it’s just that the sun is shining and you are breathing. That is always a positive. Tomorrow is another day.

Being negative is easy. It is what brings us down, and keeps us there. When we are down, there are no amount of positives that seem to bring us back up. That is why I charge you, no matter what, to put on a smile (even if it is fake) every day. Look at the world and find the smallest of the smallest of positives. It will only take you two weeks to form a habit of this, and you will eventually start to SEE the positives for just that, positive. And you will find that smile is no longer fake.

Every day, I want to thank you for being a hero! You may not think of yourself as such. But there are plenty of people who look at you that way.

My husband is also a disabled vet. I try to remind him he is a hero, just as I’ve told you. But he refuses to believe it. He feels that he’s never gone to war, sacrificed a part of himself, or come home draped in a flag. He thinks THAT is what a hero is. You may have over visions of what a hero is. Everyone has their idea. Do not brush it away. Accept it as a compliment. You are a hero. Selflessly giving up your time, your family, and even a part of you, to protect our freedom, to fight for America, to keep us all safe.

My husband’s dream since he was five was to be a soldier. He achieved that dream and served for thirteen and a half years. During his time in the service, there were several accidents with the last one being in Kosovo, which left him broken, internally. He suffers chronic migraines, chronic neck pain, depression, and PTSD. It’s all cyclic, and each feeds the other. There is not a day he goes without pain and sadness. He struggles daily. But I am there to remind him to look for the positive, no matter how small.

Visible disabilities are easier for the masses to sympathize with. It’s those disabilities that are hidden, buried inside us, that the world cannot understand. Please do not think you are ever alone in this. Whether you are physically or emotionally disabled, it’s a struggle just the same. Never feel less than human because of it.

The pain is what keeps us human.

ALWAYS REMEMBER THERE IS HOPE, HELP, LOVE, AND SUPPORT. Even if you can’t see it. Remember that tiny bit of positive you find every day. Cling to it. And it will get you through.

If you falter, because some days will be harder than others, let this letter be your guide to finding something positive, if nothing else.

You’ve given so much for your country, for our freedoms, for me. Thank you and God Speed.

Merry Christmas



  1. Ping from Cheyenne Campbell:

    Very eloquently said, and I’m sure any service member would be touched and uplifted by your words. You have a real talent for sharing genuine compassion!

  2. Ping from Angela Brown:

    First, let me wipe the tears from my eyes. This letter is beautiful.

    I wish every soldier could understand they ARE a hero, whether they served in a world war, Vietnam, Gulf War or Afghanistan. They chose to be country before self and THAT, to a simple chick like me, makes one heck of a hero.

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