Dad was deployed in the original ‘desert storm’ and ‘desert shield’, and also served during the second Iraq invasion before being deployed to Afghanistan. The news of my father’s death was a devastating blow to me personally; but I seemed to be able to deal with the loss much better than my mother or my younger stepbrother.We received word that Dad was killed shortly after my seventeenth birthday, the summer before my senior year in high school. Mom fell into a bottle, became a heavy drinker, and was ‘passed out drunk’ most nights by eight o'clock.Events occurred that I did not plan, and I am not necessarily proud of.My husband, whom I adore, knows about these events, and not only understands, but actually finds them stimulating and exciting. As I look back, ten years later, I both regret and cherish some of the experiences my stepbrother and I shared.We often lived in military housing, either on the base or immediately off the base Dad was a good man, who loved his country and had a strong sense of duty. As a military officer, my father was a stern, complex man, who was difficult to get to know.He truly believed that the actions of our military served to make the world a better place. But this story is not about political debates surrounding the U. He would pray to his God one moment; and then drink and cuss the next.Dad was a career military officer who spent extended periods of time deployed overseas.
Gary had just turned sixteen at the time, seemed to take the loss very hard.I was captain of the girl’s volley ball team, and had a tall, slender figure with firm, perky breasts that were starting to develop nicely. I am not conceited about my looks, but these are just the objective facts.I had (and still have) a pretty face with blond hair and green eyes. He can walk a little and talk, just not too coherently.He also had a difficult time showing any vulnerability, emotional or otherwise.
I know he loved us all; but at times he struggled with precisely how to show that love.
In a very real sense, this experience was both; at least to me it was.