I didn’t post on Monday even though I’m trying to post every day this month.
I didn’t post because I couldn’t; I could barely think straight. I didn’t post because right before I left work, I checked the news and I read an article saying a soldier from my boyfriend’s base had died – and not only was this person from the same base as M., he was also currently in the same place for training. No names had been released.
I’m not sure there are words to explain that kind of fear. It’s part denial – you know, this couldn’t happen to me and I’m sure everything is fine – but part paralyzing anxiety. Oh God what if it was him?
It was two days before a name was released, but yesterday I read that the family had been notified. My heart broke for that family and collapsed in relief that no one was going to call me with bad news because it had already been delivered to someone else. Being relieved that someone else has passed away is not a good feeling, let me tell you.
But knowing everyone you love is safe and sound and you get more time with them is the best feeling. It breaks my heart that a family out there – the family of a thirty-one-year-old from Portland, Oregon – doesn’t get to have that feeling. He enlisted in the Army in 1998; this Friday would have been his 13th Veterans’ Day.
It breaks my heart that he died in training, in a place that was meant to be safe and not like the real thing. But it also breaks my heart that there is a “real thing.” It breaks my heart that it’s 2011 and people still die every day as a result of so many wars. It’s hard to understand.