Thursday, October 26, 2006

Input Desired

So, another person has written a complaining letter about one of Michelle's articles. Like the girl doesn't have enough problems on her hands with a job, a 6 month old, and a husband deployed. I am planning on sending in my own letter in support of Michelle. I mostly just changed what I wrote about her articles back in August, but I updated it and changed it to 350 words or less (that is really not very long at all!) I just want input, so I don't sound whiney or dumb or whatever. So, here it is:

When my husband and I were planning our family, we knew that he was going to miss a year of that baby’s life. We knew that in 2005, he would be deploying to Iraq. For that year, we were prepared. He left when our baby daughter was 7 weeks old. When we were given the news in July that he would not be coming home as expected, we were devastated. While trying to find the positive side of this extension, we truly struggled. There were days where I could only count my grievances and all the moments that had been stolen from us. God had not abandoned us, though, and sent me friends that have helped me remember the blessings in my life.

A couple of times since the extension, someone has complained about Michelle’s articles. There is a war in Iraq. Not a single military member or their spouse needs to be reminded of that. For those of us whose husbands are deployed we can hardly think of anything else. Our empty houses remind us constantly. More than others, we know that all soldiers are not coming back. We've been to their memorial services and cried with their families. We lie awake at night, worrying about our husbands, praying that they will come home safely. Sometimes Michelle does write about things that are trivial. Because, in order to survive, we can't always think about the war in Iraq. Sometimes, we just miss our husbands. Sometimes, we just want someone else to hold the crying baby. And, sometimes we want a hand to hold while watching TV or another person to help finish off the chocolate chip cookies.

As we are going on fourteen plus months in this deployment, thank you, Michelle, for writing your articles. Thank you for reminding everyone how we can help others in the military community. Thank you for making me cry as you wrote about the same things I am going through. But, most of all, thank you for making me laugh. I needed that.


Cherie said...

Sounds great Angie.

C and J said...

Sounds good.

KimS said...

If you really want input- I used to teach high school English and can always find something to tweak. ;)

At the end of the first paragraph, I'd add a sentence:

One of these valuable friends has been the News-Miner's "Till They Come Home" column.

I'd begin the senetence "there is a war in Iraq" with "Yes,".

I might change or alternate the use of "husbands" to spouses or partners, just for those few husbands who are waiting for their wives to return.

And in the closing, I might add "during these anxious times" to "thank you for making me laugh."

All of that will probably up your word count, though. Hope at least something in there is helpful to you!

Katie said...

That is wonderful!! I was just thinking of writing in myself..I think I will...

Bob/Dad/Pawpaw said...

You have done a very good job with your repsonse Angie. Michell's words go far beyond Fairbanks, the brave families of the 172 SBCT and the good folks who read that newspaper. Her words touch me and 10,000's of other extended family members who are not immersed in the situation as you and Michell are. Michell's words have enlightended me, made me feel better and given me a sigh of relief just to know something; the smallest details of an experience I can't know but must appreciate as deeply as possible. And you know what Angie - your blog does the same things, and it comes with great pictures! Many people are quick to say "Freedom of Speech is a right guaranteed by the US Constitution." EVERYBODY also needs to know and remember WHY freedom of speech is that important. Love, BDP

mandy said...

i'm not sure who is replying in such a negative way, but it is sad that more often than not, when people are hurt they, in turn, respond with hurt. luckily, your friend, michelle, is not continuing that cycle. she is doing and writing things that are encouraging and "normal" in a world, that i can only imagine, is not always either. i think you have written a great letter and i hope that neither you nor michelle are discouraged. i offer my prayers for you all. smile, do silly stuff, takes moments to cry, take moments to enjoy friends, and most importantly, enjoy life. your lives are not on pause until your family returns. every second is meant to develop you into who God desires you to be. to let those opportunities go by would be a real tragedy. i am also sure, at least with allen, that he is encouraged when these things happen, when he knows you can have release from stress or dare i say "fun". your family members love you and want that for you. I also express genuine disgust for anyone or anything that might cause additional struggles emotionally or mentally. i'd be glad to beat somebody up - i'm still pretty scrappy! i love you and admire your courage.

Angie said...

Thanks for the input and encouragment, guys.

I did want help, thanks Kim. I think this will put me over my 350, but my first draft was over 500. Still, an improvement.

I'm glad that you would beat people up for me, Mandy. That cracks me up.