Memorial Day, the unofficial first day of summer, has always been a day of reflecting upon the sacrifices of our fallen service members. It takes a special kind of person to fight for a cause greater than themselves in order that the rest of us would be able to enjoy the freedoms they valiantly protected.
Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13 English Standard Version (ESV)
When we were young, Memorial Day was also a day when my brother and I would take our annual trek with our grandma to the local cemetery to pay our respects to the heroes within our family as well as other family members who’ve passed on. It was such a simple, loving, tribute to place flowers upon the graves of our loved ones.
I’ve always looked at cemeteries as sacred ground and as such I get this sort of out-of-body experience where I feel a little light-headed and indescribably strange. Knowing that death is an inevitable part of life one would think I’d be accustomed to visiting cemeteries but almost some 50 years later I still feel squeamish.
Though none of us know for sure when our last moment of life might be, many of us face times now and again where we have a close call. For me this happened a couple of days ago where I wasn’t quite sure if I was having a serious issue but I was fearful.
I’m so grateful I was able to share what was happening to me with two of my best friends (Lisa and Lori). One of them is a friend from childhood and the other (an adopted family member) I met later in life.
These wonderful, strong, and selfless women see me at my worst and still accept me, listen to me without judgement, speak truth to me though I may not want to hear it, take action when I don’t know where to turn, love me unconditionally, and remind me that I do matter.
Lisa and Lori, you mean the world to me and I love you.
On this Memorial Day remember our fallen heroes but also appreciate those who are still here. Life is not a dry run and there are no second chances.
“And I’m proud to be an American,
where at least I know I’m free.
And I won’t forget the men who died,
who gave that right to me.”