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Remember Who You Are...

Staying Rooted In The Person God Created You To Be

Three graduations in five months isn't that crazy for any young man or woman entering the military. High school, Bootcamp and now A-School have completed this series of moving up and on to Sam's permanent duty assignment in Washington State. Three locations, three homes, three new sets of friends, officers and instructors have been both exciting and hard. Life still feels unsettled.

We miss him and he misses us. But, we continue to forge on, and support, love and encourage him because we want him to embrace what's ahead, enjoy what he is doing and be grateful for this opportunity. He, like the rest of us, has a purpose.

During graduation, one of his Chief Petty Officers spoke about the upcoming new life these young sailors are getting ready to embark on. He reminded them that the time has come for them to move on from their training and put into action what they've learned. He gave sound advice on connecting with the right people, avoiding trouble and looking out for one another but his final remarks stood out to me the most; "Remember who you are," he said. And then repeated it, "Remember who you are."

Hearing him stress that immediately choked me up. "Remember Who You Are," has been a phrase that Ron and I have said regularly to our kids, especially when the teenage years began. Remembering who you are means something. It helps recall our values, direction, and goals in life. I want Sam to remember in the hard, lonely times, who we've raised him to be, to feel his worth and make worthy decisions independently. Life alone can be difficult, but remembering who you are can make a difference in creating a good experience or a bad one. As a parent, I appreciated his words and reminder to them.

Change is not easy for any of us but it's necessary for his growth and ours. He looks forward to coming home and taking leave over the holidays, but there is still no guaranteed itinerary for that to happen yet. However, when he does come back, it will be something to celebrate. Home is where we find peace. It is a gift of togetherness, not just a location. We will all feel home again when Sam returns but in the meantime, I want him to remember who he is because he matters, his decisions matter, and those around him matter. And when he does finally get the opportunity to come home he can rest his head with integrity and gratitude for the person God created him to be.

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