Jake,

The other soldiers who were on the helicopter with you are fighting to get the Purple Heart for you and them. They have involved parents and congressman and would like me and your dad to help in this fight. Jake, I don’t think this is important any longer. I know if you were alive, you would want this and I would fight your fight, but this award changes nothing for me and your dad. You’re still gone and we’re still broken-hearted. I politely told them that we had no fight left in us and they seemed to understand, but now that the interaction is over, I feel a little angry. I realize that it would help their cause to have us on board and that makes me feel a bit used. Are they thinking if they get the dead kid’s parents on board they’ll have a stronger argument? Do we have more clout because you’re the only casualty and their kids were wounded? Am I angry for nothing? Sometimes, I don’t know how I’m supposed to feel and if my actual feelings are different than how I’m supposed to feel then am I wrong? Am I going crazy? I know what is and isn’t important to me. Is it possible to be wrong?

I know that you are important, Ray is important, your sister and her family are important, all family is important. At the end of the day, all that matters are the people we love and the love we show others in our daily interactions. Things are not important. They are so temporary. Purple Hearts are not important. These people have their children. I do not. This fact forces us to think and feel differently.

Do you remember when Thursdays were a problem for me? They no longer bring me more pain that any other day of the week, but I find it interesting that your memorial ceremony coming up at Fort Carson is on Thursday and the anniversary of your death is the following Thursday. Will we have peace then? Will I be able to forget about the Thursday morning when I was told you weren’t ever coming home? What will happen when this year comes to an end? When the celebrations are all over? Will you be forgotten? Jake, I can’t bear the thought of your influence fading. Will there come a day when your grave is no longer visited? Do these things even matter to you? Jake I want to call you. I want to talk to you so badly, if only to know the answers to these questions. If only to hear once more, “Hey Mom, I love you”.

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