Perspective

This is how I know I’m a better writer than photographer…the following is from the journal I had with me today and both events occurred during my travels today from Texas to Kentucky. My camera was in its bag easily accessible, but at the particular moment I had to write my emotions, instead of capturing it in a picture. I hope you enjoy. I’ll post pictures for the Weekly Photo Challenge and other nonsense later; this is too important NOT to share.

 

Flight from Austin to Dallas/Fort Worth

While standing in line to proceed through TEA security, I noticed a uniformed man standing next to a woman holding a very small baby. Once I boarded the plane, I saw the man again. He was sitting in first class. Prior to take-off, the pilot announced the military man’s presence on our flight and the entire cabin erupted in cheers and applause. He was returning to Iraq to continue his second tour of duty. He had come to Texas to be with his wife as they welcomed the birth of their first child, a baby girl. This soldier left the war zone in the Middle East to meet his daughter, born on the Fourth of July.

The lump in my throat has NOT gone away.

How did you celebrate the holiday? I think I moaned and complained about the weather. My experience today provided a brand new perspective to freedom, independence, and priorities.

God bless the men and woman in uniform ~ every single one of them. I’m not, by any stretch of the imagination, a political person and I don’t give much thought to the multitude of reasons or causes of the war in the Middle East. I don’t try to understand the political-ness of the situation. However, the human-ness of the reality is that there are men and women away from their loved ones fighting for the freedom I take for granted. While I’m grateful to be a citizen of the U.S., it comes at a high price. The soldier I saw today got to spend 12 days with his baby girl, he won’t be home again until her first birthday.

To all of the men and women in uniform, all I can say is thank you.

Thank you.

Thank you.

Thank you.

An Act of Kindness

I arrived at DFW from Austin (yes, I drove south to fly north again – long story…) and had 40 minutes until the flight to Nashville departed. I grabbed a smoothie (peach sunset made with peaches, banana, strawberry, and orange juice – pretty tasty) and found a seat next to the window to people watch, one of my favorite things to do. Anyway, when I sat down there was another flight that had landed and passengers were beginning to walk into the gate area. An older gentleman, whom I immediately recognized as blind, was assisted by an airline employee. They stopped at the ticket counter so the employee could telephone a shuttle-cart to take the man to his connecting flight, departing from another terminal.

Now, I’m not blind and certainly able to transport myself through an airport, but DFW can be tricky, especially if your connecting flight is in a different terminal. Obviously, this man needed assistance. I was close enough to the ticket counter that I could hear them talking. I heard the blind man say,

I would prefer to walk instead of sit here and wait for someone to pick me up. You know, my eyes don’t work but my legs are fine.

While the employee was on the telephone, a woman approached the counter and offered to assist the blind man. I could hear her explain that her flight had been delayed and she had plenty of time to take the man wherever he needed to go. Of course, he jumped at the opportunity and was very appreciative. His face lit with joy and it warmed my heart.

These two strangers left the gate area as new friends. The woman was slightly ahead of the man but stayed closed enough so the man could keep his hand on her shoulder. He carried a white cane with his free hand. As they walked away from me, he stood so tall and proud, I’m sure he had a huge grin on his face. His joy was radiant, I couldn’t help but smile too.

 

My mom and I had made tentative plans after she picked me up from the Nashville Airport, but because of a delayed departure from DFW and a late arrival to Nashville, those plans were squashed. You know, that’s OK. We’ll have other opportunities…….it will be OK.

 

To top off the evening, I’ve already seen good friends and shared a delicious meal at one of my favorite places with Mom and Dad. We’ve told stories and laughed until we’ve cried. This is going to be a great visit, looking forward to what the next 14 days will bring.

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Comments

  1. Have a good visit! We are Colorado bound. http://Www.thediamonde.com/2011/07/16/off-to-colorado/

    • Confession: I’m a little bit jealous of your trip! I’m so glad to be in KY, but I want to go to Colorado sooooo bad. And that photo of the camper next to a river and under those mountains and blue skies – WOW!!!! Will you and Cool Husband adopt me prior to the next trip? I’ll be your live-in nanny, live-in chef, whatever you need. HAHA Hope you have a safe trip and take LOTS of pictures. Don’t even get me started on the weather up there, jealous doesn’t even describe my feelings.

  2. So let me just tell you. At 7am I had goosebumps, a lump in my throat and was fighting off a war of tears. Why? Because your post was the 3rd email I read today after waking up.
    Very very touching and cool story. I too am not a political person, I don’t fully understand what all of it is about (bc I don’t take the time to) and I take it for granted but it’s little glimpses like this that wake you up to the reality of it all. The humanness of it all is too easily forgotten, hidden, or we just choose not to see it because it’s not affecting us personally. Sadly that is just humanity today, we are all extremely selfish. So it takes little things like this to reopen our eyes and take a step back and realize what people…other humans with families, kids, parents etc. PERSONALLY go through, this is their daily lives. I don’t say thank you enough, I am guilty for taking it for granted. I vow to do better.
    As for the blind man and the woman, that is an amazing story and I love to hear things like that. Again, we as humans have become so selfish that the normal joe shmoe wouldn’t have given it time. We all can learn something from the lady that escorted him to his connecting flight….there’s always time to help another, put your personal stuff aside and look around and do that extra step if need be. That man will remember her for the rest of his life. I think that is pretty darn cool especially in today’s world.

    I am sorry to hear about the delay with your flight but I am happy that you made it safe and sound!

    • I’m glad somebody else had goosebumps, it was a story, an experience, a moment that I had to share. Plus, pictures wouldn’t have done either of them the justice they deserved.

      Totally random question: when do you leave for Vegas? Have a wonderful trip and win big.

  3. A very touching story about the soldier saying his goodbyes to his wife and new baby daughter to return to war – makes you think of what’s important in life, doesn’t it? Priorities – we have to get them right.
    Glad to hear you had a great time with your Mom and Dad – and more to come!

I appreciate all comments and read every single one. (To avoid the spam garbage, I approve them.) Go ahead, share your thoughts - it makes me smile when you do that!

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