In my office is a calendar. Now, it’s not any ol’ calendar, but one that marked a date that forever changed the world in which I lived!
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March 19, 2003, two very specific things happened…
First, I received a generic letter from my son in boot camp sharing the particulars about how he could be contacted in the event of an emergency, and where I could send letters to remind him that home was only a memory away... and second, that day marked the beginning of the Invasion of Iraq.
Last week marked the 10 year anniversary of that fateful day, and for the past week I’ve been reading the hearts of mothers who also had specific dates that forever changed their lives. This is where, on a website for Marine Moms, I first read Daphne Crawford’s heartfelt words. Daphne is from Baton Rouge, LA., and while I have never personally met her, the two us met there online and have been friends since 2003. On March 19, 2013, Daphne shared words she had written dated: March 19, 2003, and I would like to share them with you.
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HAVE YOU SEEN MY SON?
Have you seen my son? He was here just a minute ago.
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He's that scrawny, snaggled tooth kid with the scraped up knees. He was just out front - drying mud pies on the back of his dad's brand new Mazda!
Have you seen my son? He was that lanky kid with braces standing in the church parking lot on Easter morning wearing high water dress pants because I forgot to check them the night before (He just wore them two weeks ago and they were fine!).
Have you seen my son? It's hard to tell what he looks like these days because he's usually bent over with his head stuck in the fridge, or leaning over the bathroom sink to see if there is anything on his chin to shave. His hair is still blond but it's hard to tell with all the gel. I know he still lives here because I can smell the cheap cologne he douses on by the gallon. Anyone?
Have you seen my son? He skipped his high school graduation and a week later he was on his way to boot camp. He said something to us about something he wanted to do before he started college???
Have you seen my son? He was that tall, handsome young man standing at attention in the back row on the Parade Deck wearing his uniform and new Eagle, Globe and Anchor pin on his cover. He was with a bunch of other guys who looked just as handsome. I know he was there - I've got it on video.
Surely you saw him, too.
Have you seen my son? He was on a plane headed to Camp Pendleton on the morning of Sept.11, 2001, when he landed safely in Dallas. I knew our time of fear was just beginning.