As some of you know, Military Spouse Magazine was running an essay contest on "Why My Husband Rocks" and I won. Here is my winning essay (which will also be included in December's magazine). I am so very excited to see my words in print. Some of you know how long I've waited. And maybe this is just the beginning.
Greatness is an individually relative term. It is not a tangible unit of measurement. It cannot be weighed; it does not have a recognized exact height or width. There is no well-established formula that will always derive an answer exactly equal to its sum. Scientist can measure gravity, oxygen and the temperature of the sun but still the equation for greatness is illusive. In my eyes, the exact height of greatness is 5’11 and the exact weight is 185 pounds. The width of greatness fills up the left side of my bed perfectly. It is an exact formula of deep dimples, blue eyes, broad shoulders and rough hands. It is an equation of courage, sacrifice, honesty, bravery, loyalty, strength, honor, goodness and grace. Greatness is covered in camo and walks like a soldier. Greatness is and always has been defined by you.
Before you, I had known other military service members but I had never met a hero. The two do not automatically go hand in hand. Most people don’t realize that fact but I do. Soldiers are made by choice. Heroes are made because to them there is no other choice. Some see sacrifices as a hardship but to heroes it is a privilege. Soldiers are taught and trained. Heroes cannot be for it is, and always has been, simply who they are. I see that in you.
Your sacrifices can be seen daily; commitments to a country, family and woman you love. Pre-dawn runs even on leave days. Soccer games on early Saturday mornings. Evenings spent explaining algebra, geometry, science and the best way to hold a BB gun. Late nights spent warming my cold feet and chasing away my nightmares. It’s in the weeks, months and years that you spend in the sand, in the field, overseas or covering someone else’s duty. It’s in the Taco Soup that you make at request and the burgers you grill.
But your greatness can be seen in the things you do for my children. Boys that you owe nothing to and yet still you choose to give them the world. Time, patience, understanding, love and the constant reassuring promise that you are here to stay. It’s in the moments you spend with them that I can see you for what you truly are….the definition of greatness. Thank you for what you do for them, for us and for me. Thank you for choosing to make this journey with me on raising them from boys to men. You didn’t have to but I’m so VERY glad that you did.
This was supposed to be an essay about why you “rock”. And while I could give some witty reply about the way you dance, how you always open my car door or the way you let me use the hot water first; in my eyes that’s not what makes you great or makes you rock. It is the way you love; me, the boys and our country. The more I wrote, the more I realized that telling this to a stranger was of no real importance. What truly mattered was in telling you. So here it is for you, in black and white….The only definition of greatness I know is you. And it is for that reason that you truly ROCK.
I love you completely and without falter.