Saturday, December 22, 2007

A Soldier's Christmas

On Saturday December 23nd 1972 I was in the Army serving in Panama. Some of the guys from more affluent families flew home for Christmas leaving a rag tag crew to mind the fort. I headed out the the beach at sunset and I sat for hours looking northward toward home. The Atlantic surf was angry that evening but it felt peaceful sitting there.
It was the first time I had ever been away from home for Christmas and I felt disconnected and I don't think I have ever felt more lonesome in my life.
Things get crazy around Christmas but when you are home, you are a part of the craziness and you get swept up in a million emotions. You can be so happy to be around the friends and family you love, but you can also feel profound sadness. You see people in abysmal circumstances, and Christmas time seems to act like a magnifying glass bringing the need into sharper focus.
The folks I really feel for this holiday season are our soldiers who are so far away from home. I know it is hard because I have been there.
My Christmas prayer is for their safety and that they get to come home to their families soon.

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