Thursday, July 5, 2007

My Country, 'tis of thee . . .

For those of you who did not join us at Weber High for the traditional display of fireworks timed to (mostly) patriotic music here is what you missed: Smooching, munching, cuddling, and otherwise basking in the glow of my daughter's presence.
Frisbee, or as Lemur knows how to play: fetch.
Sword fighting. Muad'Dib was the one to beat, it seemed. But the other "warriors" gave him a run for his money!
Beautiful Nelson women. And, of course, a spectacular celebration of our nation's birth.

I have never been so emotionally invested in a fireworks display. But this year there was something different: I actually loved my country. I have a better understanding of why it was created, how it was created, and what that creation means to me. And I don't know if anyone else is like this, but I have to understand what something means to me to be able to appreciate it. Self-Interest, I guess. I have so much more to learn . . . who knows if I'll ever be able to learn it all. It is enough, I guess that last night I didn't just think of the entertaining lights flashing over my head, or of my children's reactions, or of how pretty my face was, adorned by wonder and pale colored light. Instead, I was reminded of something entirely different: battles. Many battles, revolutions, bullets and bombs that had soared, shattered or exploded over the heads of brave men and women who were willing to die to create, sustain and protect this country.

Anyone else see Band of Brothers? In episode 7, "The Breaking Point", where Carwood Lipton is laying in a frozen, snow covered foxhole in the forest outside of Foy as a barrage of shells explode trees and earth all around him. He says that he started laughing because it reminded him of watching fireworks on the 4rth of July with his Dad and brother. During that barrage, he later discovered that two of his friends were torn up really bad.

Watching the fireworks last night, I cried thinking of this. There are men and women fighting now for our country, and for what they believe in. Or, at least I hope they are fighting for something they believe in. My heart is so full of gratitude for the sacrifices which have been made so I could sit on a lawn with my children, listening to music that expressed such thoughts as "God Bless America" while having no fear for my safety. That is a gift I'll not dishonor.

I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands; one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.