Coffee, and Pathways
14 Jul 2020

Coffee, and Pathways

Post by Barry Nalley

I lost my  Dad, father-in Law, a wonderful brother-in Law, and several close friends… all while I was deployed, fighting… in foreign lands, for “Home and Country”.  I’ve been sitting here drinking my coffee, reminiscing… thinking and remembering…

This is a simple “Remembrance” for Old Soldiers, whom have paved the way, and for those still… Serving!

“I’ve learned…

While Family comes first in my life,

Freedom is a Family Twin,

And Worth fighting for”

I think about you and won’t forget you!  I know that you spent a ‘lifetime’ trying to make a ‘way’ for family, and trying to help your children learn to live right.

I’ve spent years ‘walking the path’ you’ve walked, as a military man, and I understand now, what you’ve been through:

  • All the long days away from family.…
  • Not being home for a child’s graduation…
  • Putting off personal goals to see a job – of helping to insure freedom for a nation of strangers – to see that job through…

Traveling to strange, warring countries, then returning home:

  • To one less friend
  • A city you no longer know, because it grew and changed while you were gone…
  • Seeing a shadow of the child you left… in the face of the young man greeting you at the door as you return home…
  • Seeing the grey in the head of the woman who stood by you
  • Visiting the graves of family who passed while you were gone
  • Missing the loyal pet and best friend that “went away” while you deployed

I don’t envy you for what you went through… I absolutely… Respect and Love you, for what you have done!

I’m still walking, wearing shoes you made for me with your living example. You taught me to ‘stay the course’, and to do a job right… even though no one would know if I didn’t do it right!

Sometimes… I almost gave up… I wanted to quit because I missed having what folks who stay home seemed to have in life:

  • sitting together, around a home movie screen…
  • new clothes and fancy cars…
  • seeing your teenager off for that ‘first date’…
  • going on family picnics…
  • enjoying holidays together
  • celebrating Anniversaries together

I missed those things… but – ‘stayed the course’ because ‘Walking in your Shoes’…  taught me that there are things that matter…  Family comes first but Freedom is a Family Twin!

I’m doing this because I love my country“, doesn’t seem so corny anymore.

I remember the tear, the trembling of your lip, and the deep breath you’d take at the sight of our nation’s flag

Now, it’s my heart that swells within my chest when I see our country’s flag, and I… remember that it was you who taught me to respect the flag.

I’ve learned, from ‘Walking in your Shoes’, that “I do this because I love my country” is really part of a beautiful… love story!

You taught me to respect the flag… but did you know..? Your ACTIONS… Taught me more about respect for ‘Flag and Country’ than words ever could do!

Walking… in your shoes… a tough job… I’ve stayed the course because…

You… Showed me how!