So far this year I haven’t really gotten too much into the Christmas spirit. Maybe it’s because my husband’s deployed or because my family already celebrated together and exchanged gifts. But even Mariah Carey can’t get me singing along to Christmas music on the radio.
But then I spent one late night rounding up holiday greetings from deployed soldiers for our website. Watching all those soldiers sending back greetings to their loved ones just really tugged on my heart strings. I realized they are thousands of miles away and still putting on a good face as they wish their wives, husbands, parents and children — some of whom they haven’t even met yet — a Merry Christmas.
Somewhere between loading and editing those 24 videos, I found my holiday spirit. Air Cav’s deployed battalion has a 10-minute string of holiday greetings, just one soldier after another in rapid fire. I’m not sure how many minutes I lasted before I began to tear up, or how many more before they spilled down my cheeks, but I couldn’t help myself. It was so sweet!
In that moment I came to appreciate that I may not have my husband for the holidays, but it doesn’t mean I’m forgotten. Even though all those soldiers are separated from their families, it’s clear they are thinking about home just as much as we are thinking about them.
Even if you don’t have a soldier deployed, I recommend you click on a couple of these greetings, just to remember how much it means to hear a “Merry Christmas” from the one you love. But if you’re a sap like my, be sure you grab a tissue.
Rose L. Thayer is the military editor for the Killeen Daily Herald. She joined the paper in February 2011 as a health and military reporter. View her complete profile Here. You can contact Rose L. Thayer at firstname.lastname@example.org or (254) 501-7463. Follow her on Twitter at KDHmilitary.