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Monday, September 15, 2008

A rabbi comes home from Iraq

This is slightly off topic, but it's too good not to share. Rabbi Andrew Shulman just returned home from a tour of duty in Iraq and wrote this reflective piece that was published in Sunday's Boston Globe. It's worth reading (Hat Tip: Lance K).
I looked at the body bags and thought about the three women back home who'd probably just received news that they were now young widows, single mothers of fatherless children. And of the little boys and girls who'd have to stop crossing off dates on the calendar, waiting for Daddy to come home.

I thought of the parents who were soon to get that horrible phone call letting them know the baby they'd carried home from the hospital, taught to ride a bike, watched graduate from high school, get married and start a family of his own, was coming home on an Air Force plane in a metal transfer case, packed in ice, paperwork fitted neatly in a large manila envelope, his last name written across it with a black, felt-tipped marker, taped to the inside of the lid.

At that moment, sitting in the makeshift mortuary among the body bags, so quiet except for the ice machine, I realized maybe it's time for me to go home.

I want to drink coffee in the morning and wash the mug out in the sink. I want to take my daughters to the park and push them on the swings until they giggle; then we'll go home and play a board game with new rules we'll make up on the spot.

But the first thing I did was give my beautiful wife, Lori, a big hug for looking after everything at home while I was there, paying the bills and taking care of the house and going shopping and mailing me care packages. I'm going to make time to sit on the couch with her and hold her hand, and buy her a new dress or something.

Maybe I'll write her a love letter. I'm getting pretty good at it.
Kind of how I feel about Mrs. Carl when I come home from a business trip, but Lori definitely had a lot more about which to be worried. Read the whole thing.


At 9:42 AM, Blogger rickismom said...

Thanks for the link to this article. Well worth the time.


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