Saturday, November 10, 2012

Happy 237th Birthday Marine Corps!

Happy Birthday Marines!

Every year since Daniel and I have been married, I make sure to call Grandpa Cherry and sing him the Marine Corps Hymn. I'm excited to do that today. It is our little tradition. 

From the Halls of Montezuma
To the Shores of Tripoli;
We fight our country's battles
In the air, on land and sea;
First to fight for right and freedom 
And to keep our honor clean; 
We are proud to claim the title 
of United States Marine. 

Our flag's unfurled to every breeze
From dawn to setting sun;
We have fought in ev'ry clime and place
Where we could take a gun;
In the snow of far-off Northern lands
And in sunny tropic scenes; 
You will find us always on the job--
The United States Marines.

Here's health to you and to our Corps
Which we are proud to serve
In many a strife we've fought for life
And never lost our nerve;
If the Army and the Navy
Ever look on Heaven's scenes;
They will find the streets are guarded
By United States Marines.

SGT Hernandez served in the Marine Corps for four years. He did two tours to Afghanistan. In those four short years, I think I developed more pride for my country than I ever knew was possible. I love our country, but when someone you loves selflessly serves for the military, I think an individual has the opportunity to really understand what the word "sacrifice" means. I also learned what it means when people say "freedom isn't free". Many young women and young men risk their lives to make sure those they love, and those they don't even know; can live in our country. 

While in the Marine Corps, we endured two deployments. One of which was eight months, and another of which was one year. Everyone always asks me: "how did you do it"? My answer  is simple: I support my husband in everything he decides to do. Being a Marine wife is not easy, but I believe it a very important calling to those that are married to a Marine. I met some amazing Marine wives while at Cherry Point. Their sacrifices and willingness to endure  deployments, no matter what challenges they face; brings tears to my eyes. Most of my friends that I met in the Marine Corps are still Marine wives. Some of them are new to the Marine Corps, some of them are "seasoned spouses", and some of them are going through their first deployments. To all of them, I salute you just as much as I salute the men you support. Each of you have touch my life in ways I can't even begin to express. I will be forever thankful for everything you do every day.   I hope each of you know your courage, strength, and patriotism is just some of the few things I admire about you. 

The Marine wives are not the only people that I grew to love in the Marine Corps. Most importantly, it made me love husband in a way that I feel most people take for granted. I was able to see a side of him that showed selflessness, responsibility, and loyalty not only to myself, but those he served with. I know other couples can say  they might have seen these characteristics in their spouses, but when you spend so much time away from the one you love; I think it gives you a different perspective on how much they love you. I don't think I will ever be able to comprehend the amount of love Daniel has for me. But I do know, that it takes a special individual to serve in the Marine Corps. Likewise, I think it takes strong females to serve in the Marine Corps, or any branch of service for that matter. My best friend SGT Austin is one of the strongest women I know. The love she has from serving others amazes me. I don't think SGT Austin could ever met a stranger, nor do I think she would ever deny helping others in need. Her love for the Marine Corps, her compassion for others, and her willingness to fight for my freedom are all characteristics that make me proud to say she is my friend. I can't imagine the sacrifices female marines make when they have to leave their families to go on a deployment. These ladies are women that I admire and look up to. 

I miss being a Marine wife. I know the saying goes: "once a Marine always a Marine", but does that go the same for all the wives too? I have never felt more accepted,more loved, or more apart of a "community". If I could do it all over again, I would. I feel as if the Marine Corps taught our family that we can endure any challenge that is present to us. It made me a stronger person. It irritates me when people whine about their husbands being gone for a short period time on a business trip or something of the like. I'm not trying to the play the "whose has/ had it worse" game, but the next time you open your mouth to complain, there is a spouse out there that is falling asleep at night wondering if her loved one is safe; there is a spouse that is waiting anxiously for a phone call, because she hasn't heard from her loved one in over a week; there is a spouse raising her family by herself while trying not cry in front of her kids. To those that haven't yet endured a deployment, don't look at it as a negative event that might happen: embrace it. The deployment will go faster than you will can say: "Semper Fi". 



Me and my Marine. :)
Thanks to all of those that serve! :)