Our cousin Olivia ships out to Iraq tomorrow. It's still sinking in to me that she's actually going. I mean, yes, I knew that she signed up for the Marine Corps and believe me, I am bursting with pride about it. It's just when someone you know and love is going off to a not so stable place, it makes you put your life in perspective. Perhaps rethink your priorities. What's important to you, how you live your life, what you're thankful for. These are things I think of when I see her leaving. I also think of her saying that she was going to miss US Weekly, Star and People magazines. My sister in law and I are going to make sure she keeps up on all the gossip. We're going to DVR Grey's Anatomy and Heroes for her. I'm thinking of tossing in The Office and some other feel good ones for her. Her mission over there is to convert one of the guys into a full on Grey's fan. I think she can do it.
A really good friend of mine, Mandy, well her boyfriend is in boot camp right now in Calif for the Marines. I don't know Tyler very well, heck I hardly know him at all. I do know this, I think of him and hope he is doing well. I am also proud of him. I know that boot camp can suck. Olivia and I were talking about it. She knows firsthand that it's brutal. Good news comes from one of his letters: he became a squad leader and that's a very good thing. His spirits are good and he's looking forward to seeing Mandy again (of course!).
I am so proud of Olivia and the choices she's made with her life. Even though I don't know Tyler well, I'm so proud of him too. Whether you support the war or not is neither here nor there. Our troops have made this choice. They knew what they were signing up for. They need to know we're there for them. We care about them, we think about them, we wish them nothing but safety, good health and coming home soon. They need our thanks for the overwhelming job they chose to take on. We've got two Marines who know we love them. What am I talking about? We've got thousands of Marines who know we are thinking of them. I just can't afford to send care packages to all of them. Two is my limit. For now.