Wednesday, January 30, 2008

an Anything but free fall

One of my best friends, well, her husband is in the army. Right now I am so blessed as to have her living 30 minutes from my house. As much as we are both moving around, it's more than luck that we are here together at the same time, even as short as it may seem. A couple of weeks ago the kids and I went with her to watch the guys jump out of helicopters. Secretly I think I was more excited than the kids were. There is just something about me that loves to border on the dangerous, and this is something I would love to try sometime. I say that now, but if I were up there I'm sure someone would have to push because I know I couldn't jump. The choppers flew right over us, landed in the field right in front of us, loaded up the guys, flew back above us and dropped them out. The benefits of friends in the military. As you watch them fall from the sky, you alomst envy the lazy, slow drift it looks like they are caught in. How awesome would that be to fall so effortlessly from the sky, free from everything that awaits down below, lost in your own thoughts and a view you share with no one else. Then as they hit the ground in an anything but a gravity free lazy way, you realize these guys are really dropping fast. And I'm sure they weren't thinking about how wonderful it felt to be so weightless during their casual float down. As their feet pounded the grassy field below, something pounded inside me. I realized just what these guys have to do for each and every one of us. I've always had such gratitude for all these men and women do, but for some reason, to actually see my friend fully geared up ready to jump, and watching them do what they do, something changed in me. Knowing that I am one of those he is fighting for....The respect I had before is just that much richer, and is now accompanied by something of an awe. And awe for the respect they have for life. A respect that they are willing to give their life to save another. That's what it's really all about.

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