It won't be long until after 9 long months of continuous deployments I will be able to lay hands on my son again. His big sis plans a big dinner, and I plan EVERYTHING. A tibetan bowl massage to heal his body and mind, private yoga instruction to heal his spirit, personal training to challenge him. I will do my usual "overwatch" of looking for changes in his spirit, signs of PTSD, signs of fatigue in his body, smelling his shirts for cigarette smoke, all the usual things that a mother does when she's feeling powerless to heal her child. As usual, he sounds upbeat, looks great and one would never know that he's been fighting in this war now for too many years. He will insist that nothing about him has changed and that he's "livin the dream" as I grieve for the innocence that he once had that is gone now forever.
I am the mother of a United States Military Service Member who is searching to find peace and meaning in my experience.