Tuesday, July 17, 2012


   taken by my soldier while inside a bunker, COP Charkh, Afghanistan

"I am really really happy to be out of Charkh.  All of the Soldiers are too. I am so proud of them.  They worked so hard in Charkh patrolling like crazy, getting shot at, lack of sleep, etc etc.  It felt so good to arrive last night in Shank.  Your prayers meant the world to me."  

As the days until we are once again the Davenport 7 are quickly becoming surprisingly short, I find myself treasuring all the more the correspondence from my soldier.  I am thankful for his words and find myself reading them over and over again as I study the images he attaches.  We had a hunch this deployment would be a crazy one, but we had no idea of the twists and turns he would have to face along the way.  I am so thankful he took the time to communicate via email and also via his journal entries.  It has been helpful to get those glimpses into this tour and it's been quite the tour for him to document.  I told him before he left that I wished I could have tagged along with my lens ... I think he did a pretty good job granting me that wish via his own (iphone) lens and his words.

I have longed for the end of this deployment truly before it ever even started.  But my "good morning" emails and my inbox being flooded at times with photos and new journal entries to read over multiple cups of coffee ... while they've not always left smiles on my face, but many times tears on my cheeks ... they have truly been some of the best gifts I've ever received.  

Here at the end of a very challenging 15 months of our life, I think Richard and I can both look back and know that while it was crazy, we embraced every moment the best we could.  And although apart, our lens and our words kept us connected over the miles.  I know there were days he didn't feel like writing ... like remembering.  Yeah, I had those days, too.  But we didn't always have phone calls and we maybe face-timed all of 20 min combined, so good ol' fashioned written words were all we had.  Looking back, I see the amazing gift in that.  

Continuing to embrace it all these last few days as we prepare to welcome him home, and not forgetting the gift we have of being able to do so.  

Friday, July 13, 2012


I'm not a young Army Wife. 

This is not my first, or my second, or my third or my (you get the picture) deployment.  And it doesn't matter.  I miss my soldier as much as the next wife.  My kids miss their Daddy as much as any kids would. Deployments are hard regardless of who you are and what number this one is for you.  

We are nearing the end, and while I would so love to be closer than we are, I can wait.  How? Because you see that image above? It is one of the most perfect reminders I can think of how God's promises are forever and they are changeless.  No matter what is going on in our lives or in the world, God's promises stand.  What a comfort that is!  What peace that brings.  When Richard sent me the above image, I just couldn't stop looking at it.  I was so amazed to see a rainbow in Afghanistan!  I'm not sure why I thought that was some type of great world wonder, but the image is just so powerful to me with the rainbow in the background of a place of combat.  

I have so much to be thankful for in regards to everything that has happened since April of 2011.  But one of the biggest joys I have is that as exhausted as I am at the end of each day, I wake up every morning and push through another day. 

I am thankful, so thankful that we have a Gracious Heavenly Father.  
I am thankful for rainbows and the reminders they are of God's word to us. 
And I am thankful I have a soldier who loves me, but who loves Jesus more.  

We are still in waiting mode for our reunion, but the days are getting much shorter! 

Many of our unit's soldiers have already returned to their families.  Mine will be one of the last, but if I am blessed to have him return, that is all that matters. I can't wait to feel him breathing next to me again.  I have missed his presence in our lives so much.  And I know he's missed ours in his.  How blessed I am to have the life I do.  I pray God will not let me forget the struggles I've faced and the lessons I've learned about my heart and my faith through the last 15 months.  And I pray as I move forward, that I use those lessons to His glory.

Monday, July 2, 2012


The sun seems to rise earlier and set later here Kansas.  
Days are long, but they are full.

The kids usually play inside at one of the other's houses during the heat of the day, but in the evenings after dinner they all gather on the sidewalk and have some good ol' fashion fun with Duck, Duck, Goose or Hide and Go Seek.  Nothing big, yet absolutely how perfect memories are made.

It is always so hard to start anew.  But I am thankful for the instant friendships made in a military community.  It helps with the continued longing for Richard and the the new longing of life at 57.  Sweet Kate asked me the other day, "Why did we have to move here?" And Olivia keeps saying she doesn't want "to go to this Kansas house, but OUR house in Georgia." 
Oh!  If you only knew the number of aches in my heart ... 

I praise God for His plans.  
I praise Him for never letting me forget (at least not for too long) that they are good.  

He has provided and will continue to provide.

I am thankful that our days are full, but for now it is still just one day at a time.