Sunday, May 25, 2008

Memorial Day: Thoughts, in no particular order

  • I was married, the first time, on Memorial Day. Funny, but I didn't remember that until just now, after I wrote the title. Of course, the year I was married, Memorial Day was not on May 25th, so I suppose I could be excused for not remembering my anniversary. Since it wasn't.
  • I was about to say that mine was not a military family. Until I thought about my Uncle Bert, my dad's brother, who served in World War II. And my Aunt Teddy, my mother's sister, who was a WAC in World War II. And my brother-in-law who served in no war, having enlisted and gotten out just before Viet Nam.
  • My dad was exempt from World War II because he was Needed At Home. That is, he worked in a job in an industry that had priority. He had extra gas rations because of whatever that priority was, but the story my mother always told was that my father hated not being in uniform during those years.
  • One of the careers that I contemplated during that period in my 20s when I didn't know what to do with myself was joining the Navy. It is a good thing that I didn't because I now realize that I would have been a Court Martial Waiting To Happen.
  • Dateline had an excellent (except for Keith Morrison's delivery) hour long segment called "Coming Home." The gist of it was that to have killed someone during war marks these soldiers forever and is often the precurser of PTSD.
  • When I was in grad school, one thing I hoped to do with my MFT degree was work with vets who had PTSD. I was all geared up to do that until I learned that you need a doctorate to work for the VA. I don't know if I would have been good at it or not, but the urge is still strong.
I don't think it's appropriate to say Happy Memorial Day, but I want to thank every soldier, then and now, who fought for our country. Hokey? I don't think so. Or rather, I don't care.

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