Thursday, August 10, 2006

Imagine the questions

Imagine for a moment that you are the expectant wife of a soldier in Iraq.

He's supposed to be home any day now, either on a break or at the end of his tour, roughly the time the baby is to be born.

Only he doesn't make it -- and I mean this in the sense of a worst case scenario.

What are you thinking when you are not racked with emotional torment?

I know my thoughts would be all over the map, but there are a few that will challenge me most because I must answer them. They wouldn't be left unanswered.

Like, how do I file for death benefits?

How quickly can I get them?

Will it be enough for formula and diapers and baby food and baby clothes?

Will it be enough for the rent? or the car? or the doctor? or the insurance?

Will the government give me a hard time about the paperwork?

How will I cover the funeral expenses?

Will there be enough money for us to get by afterwards?

How will I do this all by myself?

How do I go back to work? How will I go back to school?

Who will be there for me in the middle of the night, when I'm too sick to care for the baby?

Who will be there for me through labor?

What happens if I get post-partum depression on top of my grief?

How will I handle seeing his eyes in my baby's face?


Ah, that this was only a mental exercise.

Somewhere, someone is now facing these questions on their own.

My heart aches for you, dear; I cannot sleep for thinking of you. I hope so very much that all the answers to these questions will be kind and generous ones.

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