FOR A BEAUTIFUL, HEALTHY SMILE
A SALUTE TO THOSE WHO SERVE
And the Strength of Mothers
to go through another deployment, so I decided to leave the military when my term of service was up. It’s something families go through every year — being separated while one spouse is deployed. For any of you experiencing this, know that you have the strength to make it through. Knowing what it’s like to be away from family, I’m all the more appreciative to spend holidays together. For Memorial Day, we’ll likely either go camping or have a barbecue with friends and family. I’m eager to put the smoker to use this season, and I’m sure there will be a request for our family favorite: smoked jalapeno poppers. However you spend your May, enjoy the two holidays this month. To all those who gave their lives in the line of duty, we salute you.
call was the only time we heard his voice. We did visit him a few times that year for big holidays, but for the most part, it was as if my mom was a single parent. While my dad was finishing out his time in the Navy, she raised the six of us and held our family together. It certainly was a memorable year, but it wasn’t the last time my family was separated during military service. When I was in the Navy, I spent two years on a ship, and my wife Beth did nearly the same thing my mom had done. For those two years, over the course of two deployments, we were miles apart and stayed in touch via emails and phone calls. Our fourth child, Leila, was born while I was deployed. Beth did an incredible thing, raising our kids and giving birth to another while I was away. It wasn’t easy, I know, and I am beyond grateful to her. Both my mom and Beth displayed strength and bravery while their spouses were away. The military treated us well, but given the circumstances, we liked co- parenting and being together too much
With Mother’s Day and Memorial Day this month, I’ve been thinking a lot about how the military has been a part of our family and how the strength of women held our family together while their spouses were deployed. My mom is a strong person. For a whole year while my dad was serving, she raised my five siblings and me in another state. We were a military family, and we moved quite a bit for my dad’s job. When it came time for him to retire, one year before he reached his 20-year mark, the Navy transferred him back to Southern California. We were living in Nevada at the time, and my parents weren’t eager to settle in Southern California. So instead of the whole family moving to California for my dad’s last year in the Navy, my parents decided that my dad would go, and the rest of the family would stay in Nevada. Can you imagine making this decision? It must’ve been tough. For a whole year, we only spoke to my dad on the phone. Remember, there was no video chat or email at the time, so a phone
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