A mothers son goes to Iraq, part 10
Marshall came home for a very short visit Easter weekend. This visit, he brought us a gift, a girlfriend! Marshall met Mindy last Fall and every time I talk to him, he's telling me all about her. You can tell that he absolutely adores Mindy. Being a parent, and especially a Mom, you have alot of emotions when your child finds someone special. You're excited for them, excited because they found love, but it's also another part of "letting go." My son is moving on to new chapters in his life and that includes another person. His Dad and I are no longer the center of his universe. I always imagined that if I had a daughter, I'd be very excited when she found the "love of her life," but with a son, the Mom is no longer the main woman in his life. He has someone else and you don't feel as important.
We met Marshall and Mindy at the airport on Good Friday, and it was quite obvious why he loves her. It was love at first sight for me. She's cute, smart, responsible, and down to earth. Marshall had told me that "she's alot like you, Mom." I totally agree, she does have some of my personality. However, she also has alot of qualities that I wish I had. Mindy's far more outgoing, fun, athletic, and gorgeous. You can also tell that she and Marshall are "connected" by the looks that they give each other. Mindy definitely keeps Marshall in line. There's something about Mindy that really draws you in and you don't want to let go. She's one of those people that you meet in life that make such a strong impression on you, that you're forever affected by them.
The two of them spent Saturday visiting friends and spending the day with Dad. Saturday night, Marshall wanted to take Mindy to a nice restaurant in downtown Houston, so they could both dress up, Mindy in a nice cocktail dress and Marshall in his dress blues. When they arrived at the restaurant, another restaurant patron approached Marshall and offered to pay for their dinner. Marshall, being the man that he is, declined, but thanked him anyway. The man kept insisting, so Marshall finally accepted. This exceptional man then handed Marshall $100 and thanked him for his service.
After a very nice, relaxing dinner, the waiter came over to the table and told them that a customer at the bar had paid their tab. When Mindy was telling me the story, she exclaimed, "People are so friendly here. I've seen people offer to buy a drink but never the whole tab!" With the extra money that they had received from the first gentleman, they were able to go to a Comedy Club. That really topped off the night.
Sunday went by extremely fast. We went to Easter services, lunch, and then Marshall and Mindy were off to visit more of Marshall's friends. By mid-afternoon, they were back home and packing to go back to the airport. It dawned on me as I was driving them to the airport, we're not really "losing" part of our son, he's giving us more because he's bringing Mindy into our lives.
Marshall will be going back to Iraq in the Fall. I'm already dreading this deployment. From what I've heard from other Moms, the second deployment is harder than the first one. Even though you know more what to expect, you also know what your child dealt with the first time and you pray that the Angels that were protecting him during those previous close calls, will protect him again. All we can do is put Marshall in God's hands and remember that God has a plan for this precious soul and whatever that plan is, we need to accept it. Continue to pray for our troo