My grandfather fought in the Big One, WWII. He was awarded a bronze star. He saw some serious action. It was a different time then. You didn’t talk about the atrocities that you experienced. You either bottled them up inside or drank them away as my grandfather did.
But we’re all romance readers here. In this genre we tend to romanticize the military. Every book is about an ex Ranger or SEAL. They save the day and win their HEA with the heroine. They may have started slightly damaged but are saved. The ultimate hero’s journey. Does this make us forget that not everyone gets their happily ever after?
Now I’m not saying we shouldn’t have romances that have the Rangers, SEALs, Special Forces, or any military. I just want everyone to remember on Veteran’s Day that for every ten of them, there was one who didn’t make it back and twenty who came home and are struggling to get that happily ever after. Please take some time tomorrow and remember all the heroes.
A friend of mine’s daughter wrote this very poignant poem that says a lot. I thought it was appropriate to share.
This is a tribute to my brother, the soldier
Pulling my hair and making me cry
Paying me off in ice cream
Telling me it’s fine
You are the epitome of a child
Ignoring me in the hall
And not answering my calls
You are the epitome of a teenager
Realizing the necessity of family
But leaving me out of the mix
You are the epitome of a high schooler
You are 18
Do you miss me?
You send when you can
But its not often enough
You are the epitome of an adult
The country needs you
You don’t make it cry
You are no longer a child
You don’t ignore the calls
You are no longer a teenager
You realize I am part of the family and address me as such
You are no longer a high schooler
You try to call and message more
But you are still addressed as an adult
You just realize people
People like me
You are the epitome of a soldier
More about Jessica
Jessica McBrayer lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family. She enjoys reading voraciously as well as writing and is often daydreaming about her next book. A die-hard San Jose Sharks fan, you can find her during hockey season wearing her favorite player’s name on the back of her jersey and yelling at the TV. She never wants to find out what the world would be like without Harry Potter or hockey in it.