Thursday, November 10, 2011

Happy Birthday Marine Corps

What can I say about the Marines, 236 years young today?

There are the recruiters who, at a barbecue, went from screaming at their "poolees" (guys who had not yet left for boot camp) to, in almost the same breath, addressing me sweetly as "Ma'am" and offering me a beverage. Who yelled at those poolees not to move from their spot but the second I got cold, told my love of COURSE he could escort the lady to the car to get her sweatshirt.

There is the young drunk Marine who I'd met five seconds before apologizing for saying "bitch" in my presence and when I said it was fine, immediately sobering and asking if my love had ever called me that and offering to kick his ass if he had. I chuckled and assured him my love had never called me names.

There is my love's buddy who recently posted a picture of himself...he had been hit with a small piece of shrapnel and in the picture it is sticking out of the apple of his cheek as he SMILES AT THE CAMERA. I can picture the conversation now, "OW...Duuuuuuude quick get a picture of this before Doc pulls it out...this is badass."

There is my love, my life, my Andrew, my born warrior husband who is the most amazing man I know. He has a quick, intelligent mind that grasps strategy, strong yet nimble hands that can disassemble and reassemble weapons in the blink of an eye. He is level headed and brave, energetic, affectionate, chivalrous, sexy in everything from civvies to cammies to Dress Blues...especially those Dress Blues. He is thoughtful, cheerful, outgoing, and like every Marine I know, a little bit nuts. :) I wouldn't have him any other way.

They are a breed apart, and sometimes I think it takes some special wiring in my brain to be a Marine's woman...I wouldn't recommend it to just anyone. If you read the bit about the shrapnel and thought "OMG" or "EWW" instead of laughing and somehow finding it weirdly, strangely, inexplicably endearing, you aren't cut out for it. If you couldn't handle your husband saying that while he's in a firefight, one of the thoughts going through his head is the fact that Purple Heart recipients get free car insurance and wouldn't that be cool, you aren't cut out for it. If you can't live on intermittent phone calls and a small handful of letters for months at a time, you aren't cut out for it.

But you know what? He is So. Worth. It.

So Happy Birthday Marines. You are some freaking awesome guys. Thank you for all you do and all you represent.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Parris Island Cont.

A year ago today was my love's graduation. My Mom and I got to the base even earlier than the day before. I set up camp on the empty bleachers. Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy fans will get a kick out of the fact that I made sure I had a towel, and it came in quite useful. It was dewy and insanely dark but warm. Mom went to get coffee and I drank it without really tasting it, then when it got light enough I read to pass the time. I wore a sundress paired with tennis shoes because I knew I'd need to run.

The ceremony was amazing, as was the band, but all that truly stuck with me was heart-pounding trembling impatience and overwhelming pride in my love and what he had accomplished. When they were released and the stampede started, I vaulted over the rope and sprinted out on to the parade deck as my Mom snapped some priceless photos. When I reached Andrew I slammed into him and knocked him back a bit into the Marine behind him. Then it was just a matter of some congratulations, introductions, and collecting Andrew's things.

I don't know that there's any way to relate what that day was like, driving off base with my fingers entwined with my love's, taking pictures in the old churchyard, having a great lunch that I hardly remember, repacking Andrew's things and seeing just how baggy his civvies were now. Getting a bit shy around our parents and him saying across the room "What are you doing all the way over there?" just when I needed to hear something like that.

The flight back to Seattle the next day was the most enjoyable plane ride of my life, and probably the most comfortable with Andrew as backrest and pillow. For once I wasn't anxious to get somewhere good, or sad to be leaving, I had him with me and the plane could have gone and landed anywhere and I probably wouldn't have minded a bit. His boot leave turned out to be pretty darn eventful, but I think I've told a bit of that story before...of how less than a week later I ended up with his ring on my finger, where it still sits proudly as I type this.

Every day since then I've only grown prouder and loved him more, even with him away. I look forward to the day I am once again waiting with my heart in my throat, then breaking into a sprint when I spot him and launching into his arms where I belong.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Parris Island

On this day in 2010, I was at Parris Island on Family Day.

I woke with my heart in my throat, barely having slept the night before. It was early, it was dark, it was already warm. I don't think I was completely still the whole drive from our B&B to the base. We parked and headed to the side of the parade deck and found some Marines doing crowd control. They told us right where my newly-minted Marine was going to pass by on the upcoming moto-run and I nabbed a spot right on the corner where I would be the most visible and the first person everyone passed. Andrew's Dad and Step-mom found us and I introduced my Mom, a little awkward still because this was only the second time I'd met them. The sky gradually lightened and I could start to see the new Marines out on the parade deck. It seemed like forever until they started running. There were so many, and I was looking for "portals", the government issued glasses, but little did I know my love was wearing his contacts so I missed him at first. My Mom spotted him and said she was sure he had seen me. We ran over to another spot on the route and waited again. This time, I saw him and his irresistible grin. So very close but still far...

We had to hurry up and wait some more before they were released to us families. We had coffee and moseyed on in to the All-Weather Training Facility where a video was played that I hardly saw and people spoke that I hardly heard and finally my Marine was coming in the side door and standing there in front of me. They tortured us a bit longer until at last they were released and everyone was pouring out of the stands to grab their men. I vaulted out of the bleachers, pushed through the other people and landed in Andrew's arms. I had been told some rules about no PDA during family day and while they were in uniform so I looked up at him, smiled, and said, "What can I get away with?" He kissed me and I completely melted but it was over far too soon as he said, "I don't think anyone noticed that," with a smirk.

I had been a little worried about how he might have changed during the time apart but it only took a few moments for me to say, "Yup, you're still my Andrew." We all started walking, him telling stories and catching up with his Dad, I clung to his arm and just grinned and grinned and drank in the sight of him. We shared a Subway sandwich for lunch and went through the museum, stealing a couple more kisses in a back corner and on the very short one-story elevator ride. He played tour guide as we explored the base, in one building we ran into a group of high-ranking military officers from multiple countries and one stopped to thank Andrew for his service. He was bewildered and ever humble, commenting after the fact that he "hadn't done anything yet."

Eventually I had to give him back as they started graduation practice. My Mom and I watched for a bit but after the Drill Instructors yelled for them to start over a few times we left them to it and met his Dad and Derri for dinner, then on to another sleepless night as I waited for graduation and when I could leave there with my Marine by my side.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke

"Now it was just after midnight and she was sitting in the drawing-room reflecting that all she needed to complete her happiness was her husband home again, when one of the maids burst in and cried out, "Oh, madam! The master is here!"
Someone came into the room.
He was a thinner, browner person than she remembered. His hair had more grey in it and there was a whitish scar above his left eyebrow. The scar was not recent, but she had never seen it before. His features were what they had always been, but somehow his air was different. This scarcely seemed to be the person she had been thinking of only a moment ago. But before she could be disappointed, or awkward, or any of the things she had feared she would be when he at last came home, he looked around the room with a quick, half-ironic glance that she knew in an instant. Then he looked at her with the most familiar smile in the world and said, "I'm home."

The next morning they still had not said a hundredth part of all they had to tell each other."

I wonder if Susanna Clarke ever had someone come home from war in reality. It sounds like that moment that I had after boot camp that I bet I'll experience again at homecoming, the moment of assessment and the relief of "Oh yes, he's still my Andrew." I didn't expect to stumble across something so familiar in this comedic English fantasy novel, but I suppose that's the mark of good fantasy. The environment, time, magic, etc are sometimes outrageous but the motivations, emotions and bits of human nature are very real.

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Fantasy authors can get so philosophical

I adore Terry Goodkind's Sword of Truth series...there are some points I wouldn't agree with him on, but in the eighth book, Naked Empire, one of the main characters, Richard, makes some great points to a people who embrace nonviolence to a fault and yet have poisoned him to blackmail him into coming and fighting their battles for them (since he's an ignorant violent savage anyway in their eyes).

"Your unconditional rejection of violence makes you smugly think of yourselves as noble, as enlightened, but in reality it is nothing less than abject moral capitulation to evil. Unconditional rejection of self-defense, because you think it's a supposed surrender to violence, leaves you no resort but begging for mercy or offering appeasement.
Evil grants no mercy, and to attempt to appease it is nothing more than a piecemeal surrender to it."

"If you are unwilling to defend your right to your own lives, then you are merely like mice trying to argue with owls. You think their ways are wrong. They think you are dinner."

"A man stepped forward. 'But common decency in dealing with our fellow man requires that we must show them mercy for their misguided ways.'
'...A murderer, by his own choice to kill, forfeits the right to his own life. Mercy for such evil is nothing short of excusing it and thus allowing evil to prevail--it codifies the taking of innocent life by not making the murderer forfeit their own guilty life.
Mercy grants value to the life of a killer, while, at the same time, it strips away the value of the life of the innocent victim. It makes the life of a killer more important than the life of an innocent. It is thus a trade of the good to the evil. It is the victory of death over life.'"

"'But that's too harsh a sentiment,' the man said. 'It's just being stubborn and obstructing a constructive path. There is always room for compromise.'
Richard tapped his thumb against his chest. 'You men decided to give me poison. That poison will kill me; that makes it evil. How would you suggest I compromise with poison?'
No one had an answer.
'In trade between willing parties who share moral values and who deal fairly and honestly with one another, compromise over something like price is legitimate. In matters of morality or truth, there can be no compromise.
Compromising with murderers...grants them moral equivalence where none can rightfully exist. Moral equivalence says that you are no better than they; therefore, their belief--that they should be able to torture, rape, or murder you--is just as morally valid as your view--that you have the right to live free of their violence. Moral compromise rejects the concept of right and wrong. It says that everyone is equal, all desires are equally valid, all action equally valid, so everyone should compromise to get along.
Where would you compromise with those who torture, rape, and murder people? In the number of days a week you will be tortured? In the number of men to be allowed to rape your loved ones? In how many of your family are to be murdered?
No moral equivalence exists in that situation, nor can it exist...'"

Richard ends up making a very long speech to the men, and eventually they come around to where one steps up and says, "I choose to join with you and fight to gain my freedom. I want to live free. I want those I love to live free." I think this is what the men and women of our armed forces have said. I believe that freedom is costly, that it must be fought for and defended, and that there are times when words and arguments are spent and useless. I believe that it is foolish to avoid giving evil an ultimatum and to claim that endless compromise and relativism is the moral high ground. I am thankful for every drop of blood spilled so that I have not had to personally take up arms to preserve my life and the lives of my family, blood spilled so that I could worship and think and speak and write as I wish. I am endlessly thankful and proud that my husband serves to defend life and freedom for others.

Tomorrow, I will celebrate Independence Day with a deep sense of gratitude.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Questions I don't have answers for Pt. 2

Life these days is quite interesting...I wrote a post before about not having answers to questions. Well now it's not so much not having answers as not being able to share them. Now as my husband is off doing his job, I have a job as well, and it is to respect OPSEC rules and not blab online about anything that could endanger him or any Marines. I couldn't come running on here and vent about adjusting to the deployment because I couldn't share dates as he was shipping out. Now I can't talk about rumors of when homecoming might be.

I can say that the first little bit was really hard, but I'm settling in now. I can say that the communication I get with him is so fantastically encouraging...he is absolutely amazing at making me feel loved even from half a world away. I can say that I love him more than anything on earth and I am so proud of him. He is a true warrior.

We are working on a project together, writing a fantasy story that is based on our story. We have something like 25+ pages and are having an absolute blast. Who knows, maybe someday some version of it will be shared on here. He still tries to claim he isn't a writer, but every bit of story he pens has me begging him for more, and the letters he sends me are better still. The written word has always been special to us as we have exchanged so many texts, instant messages, and letters while we are apart. We fell in love writing to each other, and we each love to read each other's writing of the reasons I'm updating this blog and will push myself to continue to.

I had thought about sharing some tiny snippet from his last letter, but..........I think I'm keeping it all for myself. :)

I could rant about Tricare, finding non-ugly bridesmaid dresses, or some people's silliness, but after dwelling on my awesome husband I'm just not in the mood. I've been itching to write about my favorite poet so I think I'll work on that for the next post. :P

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Shopping List

When I was in youth group, we young women were encouraged to make ourselves "shopping lists" for our future determine what was important to us and consider that as we began dating. I still have a version I wrote in my diary in 2002 in high school. I present it to you completely unaltered:

"Traits required for my man: a strong Christian with good theology, loves the Lord, loves being in the word, musical, smarter than me but humble about it, sense of humor, romantic, knows when to be serious, is good with kids, good provider, good cook, honor and protect me, loves to read, adventurous, not prissy, no ego!!!, energetic, smiles alot, strong, understanding, guards my feelings and cherishes my opinions, sometimes silly, good driver, witty, not afraid of PDA, brave, loves outdoors, watches stars & clouds, good encourager, faithful and trustworthy, original, old-fashioned gentleman!, loves animals, good listener (knows when to shut up), is my best friend, has plenty of common sense, someone I can feel good about submitting to, loves me! Physical: Unique beautiful eyes, nice hands and feet, taller than me, nice teeth, toned-doesn't have to be buff, soft hair that he doesn't feel he needs to keep perfect all the time and lets me play with, no unibrows!, good overall hygiene, not too hairy"

A little bit dorky in its phrasing, but a pretty darn good list I'd say. I abandoned it for a time as unrealistic, to my detriment, and then forgot about it. But lo and behold! This is the man I ended up marrying. I'm blessed. He'd argue some of the points but I think it describes him rather well. :)

Friday, June 03, 2011

On Dante's Inferno

"The Vestibule [of Hell] is the abode of the weather-cock mind, the vague tolerance which will neither approve nor condemn, the cautious cowardice for which no decision is ever final. The spirits rush aimlessly after the aimlessly whirling banner, stung and goaded, as of old, by the thought that, in doing anything definite whatsoever, they are missing doing something else." -Dorothy Sayers

Sunday, May 22, 2011

A Lady's Favor

Sometimes I imagine myself as another woman.

She swishes when she moves down a stone hallway softened by tapestries, the train of her gown whispering unintelligibly across the floor. In her hands is clutched a strip of fabric, deep red silk with a bit of embroidery, the edges fraying a little where she tore it from a rather well-loved garment.

The hallway opens into a larger chamber and her steps take her straight toward a knight gathering his gear. He's not some fluffy ceremonial knight with a mirror-shiny breastplate, he is rough and real and there are nicks in his armor, he grinds notches out of his sword where it has actually struck another blade. He looks up and at the sight of her his eyes fill with love, a tentative smile is loaded with all the reassurance he can muster.

She blinks away tears as she steps in close, kisses the silk scrap, and proceeds to tie it securely around his arm. He watches her fumbling fingers patiently and when she's finished he leans down and kisses her passionately, pulling back to whisper promises in her ear that neither of them are sure he can always keep, but she'll cling to them in the coming months.

Then she fades, and rather than walking back through the stone hallways I'm walking out of an airport, shorts, cotton t-shirt, dog tags and a man's ring hanging around my neck. My knight boards a plane rather than mounting a horse but he makes the same promises, his eyes are as full of love, the favor tied round his arm is only visible to us two, but there all the same...

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

I wore a dark blue v-neck dress to get engaged before Kate Middleton did...

...and I also already had a ring very similar to Diana's before Kate received hers, but mine is smaller, blue topaz in the middle, and yellow gold instead of white. She did get her name first, I'll give her that...she is Catherine Elizabeth while I am Katherine Ellen. My prince proposed first after dating me a shorter time and we beat her and Wills to making it all legal too, though they get their big ceremony before Andrew and I.

I find I have an affinity for her. She had to wait on a military man (albeit a unique one), and she did so patiently, with reserve and her chin up rather than with complaint, and she supports him...she appears to me to be what he needs, she seems a quietly strong woman, and she is ready to sacrifice for the love of him. Sounds rather familiar.

I know some people are sick of the hype already, some are bah humbug about the whole thing, but I for one find this royal wedding to be a great thing. Instead of sitting around hearing about this or that celebrity doing ridiculous amounts of drugs, being promiscuous or cheating on their significant others, people splitting up and general strife in the world, my television is filled with a young upstanding couple who haven't been in serious trouble and who no one speaks ill of who appear to be genuinely in love and excited to proclaim that and make their vows to each other. I think it's fantastic, and I enjoy their story.

Letterman felt the need to make cracks about being uninterested in the royal wedding, but waiting on the royal divorce. I'm sorry, but what a complete ass. Way to just be a completely bitter pessimist and have to take a dig at a young man who has been thrust into the public eye his whole life because of the family he happened to be born into, whose parents split in a manner that had to be extremely rough on him, and then lost his mother in such a tragic way...he came through it to become a gracious person, obviously affected by things and reserved, who probably spent so long dating Kate because he wanted to be sure, wanted things to go well, wanted to keep his commitment once he made it, and you're going to sneer at them and predict failure? I just think it's really snarky. Obviously I could be dead wrong in my impression of Prince William's personality from his portrayal by the press, but they love to dig up scandal so if he was awful I'm sure we'd hear more about it.

I dislike that that pessimism seems so prevalent, that people in our society seem to treat marriage as a temporary thing with a good chance of ending in a divorce, and oh well, don't worry too much you can always get out of it....ridiculous. I made vows that said they were till death, and I'm going to be repeating that when Andrew and I can have our big ceremony with our family members there, I meant it March 11th and I mean it today and I will mean it then. Vows don't expire or wear off, you don't cross your fingers behind your back and say JK!!!1! I committed to my husband for better or worse...not just when it's easy and I'm twitterpated and feeling giddy and in love, I choose to love him even when things are hard. I get the impression Will and Kate want to vow to choose to love each other for better or worse for real, not just because it's in that traditional little spiel you have to repeat...I hope I'm right. I do have those moments of discernment that are more accurate than I give credit to after all...

Saturday, April 23, 2011


I was thinking the other night about the quote that's something along the lines of "Everyone is the hero of their own story." I'm not sure who it originated with, and a quick Google search just has t-shirts and other people's musings and I'm too lazy to search further, so there ya go. :-P I was thinking about the way most of us would likely approach our memoirs...we'd justify things, portray our life as a grand adventure and/or romance, it would all become a little fictionalized. I know I've edited parts of my story into downright lies, even in my little girl diaries! Sometimes I think even our own private memories are pretty fictionalized after we've spent enough time justifying. It just seems such an impossible endeavor at times, letting someone else into our heads, explaining how we think and feel and what motivates us to act as we do. It can't be done completely, not really.

But then I think back to that quote about being the here I am, the heroine of my little life, finding it so hard to really be known...and then romance and adventure ensues and I get married. Now I start thinking about different quotes, about two becoming one, and something has changed where I'm not just the heroine of my own little story, I'm a heroine with a hero and it's OUR story now and we're a partnership that can be taken as a single character at times. Now someone is in my life and head in a way unlike anyone else...See, even now I'm having trouble expressing this idea bopping around in my brain, but you know what? I think my hero would get what I mean. :)

Saturday, March 26, 2011


March 24, 2008: After a great deal of chatting on Knighthood (we think we met in Feb or early March but that happened in a group that has been deleted), I finally accept his friend request.

August 22, 2008: We meet in person for the first time in Oregon. Maybe I'll tell that story sometime. ;)

Hard to believe, but May 3, 2009 was the first time I can find him commenting on a post (we mostly talked in the Knighthood game and on MSN messenger or Skype).

No wall comments until May 13, 2009 when I link him to the "Jenga gun", ha!

November 28, 2009: Several days after the actual breakup with my ex, I finally declare myself single on Facebook and, well, you can see for yourselves. *smirk*

December 5, 2009: Andrew officially asks me to be his girlfriend.
February 6, 2010 is the first time I see him in person after we start dating.

March 19, 2010: The first "I love you" on Facebook. He said it first in text, on the phone, and in person (all of which were before Facebook btw).

September 29, 2010: He asks me to marry him and...
March 11, 2011: I do.

Such a funny little story we have. :D

Thursday, March 24, 2011


My love and I have gone through a crazy journey, and all along we've done things our own unique way for sure. Now we're at it again...

A couple months back when I got back from my first visit to Jacksonville, my Dad jokingly asked if Andrew and I had just gone ahead and gotten married...we hadn't but that got us talking about the pros of getting legally married before he deployed, even though a big wedding had to wait til after.

I was a little resistant at first, would it take away from the wedding, would people understand? The fact that just being a fiancée gave me no legal status when it came to hearing about Andrew's condition really clinched my decision though. As a wife I would hear all the news, and if *I* got hurt they would potentially bring him home if he was overseas. We decided it was a good idea but that we were only going to tell immediate family for the time being.

This has become a problem because 1) this is crazy exciting and 2) I'm bad with secrets and 3) I started to forget why we were even keeping it quiet to begin with, so, now y'all know!

Andrew and I got married by the Onslow County, NC Magistrate on March 11th...we are still gonna have a big wedding later, but, yeah. :) We went down to the Register of Deeds, filled out our application and got our license, then grabbed another couple that was getting married (also a Marine) and went around the corner to the Magistrate's office to make it all official. The Magistrate also does...I guess it would be called Traffic Court in other places? So in line ahead of us was a gal reporting a stolen car, ha! It was...well, not the prettiest of buildings and offices. We had a ball with our secret little ceremony though, and afterwards enjoyed a meal at Golden Corral where we got stares since we were quite overdressed.

The Magistrate! Classy!

Ecstatic newlyweds outside the courts building

Rings :)

I absolutely could not be happier that I am married to my wonderful husband, and I can't wait to celebrate at the wedding and move to live with him!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Phone call with my love:

Buddy in the background: Hey! Is that Katie?
My love: Yes...
Buddy: Hey! Ask her if you died which one of us she would go for first!
Me: *chuckling* Who says I'd go for another Marine that could up and die on me? Tell him you've ruined me for all other men, I would just go lesbian.
My love: Sorry, she says I've ruined her for all other men, I tend to do that, can't help it!
Buddy: Awww...

I had alot of fun visiting my love and getting to meet people. That buddy of his is the one who warmed up to me the fastest, everyone else was pretty shy. He has accepted me enough to pick on me like a lil sister or one of the guys. Completely cracks me up. :)

By the way that one last Milano cookie I mentioned in the last post? I let my love eat THAT is true love. ;)

Thursday, March 17, 2011


Hotel mini-fridge inventory:

Two (2) slices Papa John's pepperoni pizza
Four (4) packets of Papa John's Special Garlic sauce
One (1) jalepeno
Five (5) eggs
One (1) navel orange
Two (2) Cadbury Creme Eggs
One (1) jug Arizona Sweet Tea (nearly empty)
One (1) jug cranberry juice
Two (2) liters 7-Up
One (1) half gallon 2% milk
One (1) small tub salted whipped light butter
One (1) small package cheddar cheese (nearly gone and mostly hard)
One (1) small tub cream cheese

Hotel shelf inventory:

Three (3) blueberry muffins
One (1) blueberry bagel
One (1) loaf wheat bread
One (1) packet maple & brown sugar instant oatmeal
One (1) Mint Milano cookie
One (1) jar honey
One (1) jar peanut butter
One (1) pound pretzels
One (1) box Honey Nut Cheerios
One (1) can butter toffee peanuts

I wonder if this indicates what Andrew's and my future home will be stocked with...

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Questions I don't have answers for

Today was a day of me looking wide-eyed and blank at people asking me questions.

I went to my third wedding dress fitting (which is likely the last one) and after the gal got the straps draped and pinned and I got back out of the dress she asked if I was just in town for the day...

"Well I was just wondering when you wanted to come back for pickup, I don't think I can get it ready today..."
"Oh, um, how soon could I come?"
"Whenever you want! I just have to sew those straps then you're all set."

Like, DONE done? Yeah, not prepared for that reality, I think actually having the dress hanging in my own closet is gonna mess with my mind.

We had a guest at the fitting, Patty Forte Linna, who is an artist my family knows and my parents ARE COMMISSIONING A PORTRAIT OF MY LOVE AND I FOR A WEDDING GIFT. How stinking amazing is that??

She had a million questions about poses and angles and framing and lighting and I swear I just went "Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmm......" for an hour straight. She took a bunch of reference photos and gushed over my dress and me as befits her warm, larger than life personality. I have the assignment of getting reference pictures of my love when I go to see him next week. Wait til he hears that he has to get into his blues just for a photo op...

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Just ten more wake ups...

...til I am with my love again, and I absolutely cannot wait.

Even just getting to text him the last couple days has made the days seem brighter and time pass more easily, the moment I get that first "Hey Darlin" or "Good morning my love" after being out of contact something in me relaxes and I'm carefree again.

It's not that I don't cope without him, I manage and I have confidence I can continue to deal with distance and times without communication. It's just that everything is better with him around...also sometimes after not talkin to him awhile I have a lil manic OCD cleaning spree, ha! During boot camp it was my room, I cleaned out the closet and my desk and rearranged furniture. This time was all the bathroom drawers and cupboards. I told him after deployments he will probably come home to a sparkling spotless little house.

But anywho, ten more wake ups...the last night I will be on a plane and not be sleeping so I don't have a wake up that day, ha. Between now and then I have my third wedding dress fitting and am considering attending Emerald City Comicon for the first time. Exciting, right?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Bits of Pablo Neruda

But I love your feet
only because they walked
upon the earth and upon the wind and upon
the waters,
until they found me.


My struggle is harsh and I come back
with eyes tired
at times from having seen
the unchanging earth,
but when your laughter enters
it rises to the sky seeking me
and it opens for me all
the doors of life.

My love, in the darkest
hour your laughter
opens, and if suddenly
you see my blood staining
the stones of the street,
laugh, because your laughter
will be for my hands
like a fresh sword.


My wild girl, we have had
to regain time
and march backward, in the distance
of our lives, kiss after kiss,
gathering from one place what we gave
without joy, discovering in another
the secret road
that gradually brought your feet close to mine,
and so beneath my mouth
you see again the unfulfilled plant
of your life putting out its roots
toward my heart that was waiting for you.


My love, to my life
you came prepared
as a poppy and as a guerrilla fighter:
silken is the splendor that I stroke
with the hunger and thirst
that I brought to this world only for you,
and behind the silk
the girl of iron
who will fight at my side.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Time to think

Does anyone else spend a lot of aimless thinking time in the shower? I love to stand there in the steaming hot water feeling my muscles slowly unclench and just ponder whatever pops into my head. Two things this week:

Firstly I was thinking about feminism, specifically among Christian women who get so very ruffled over the word "submit". I was thinking that men are given the harder job when they are told to love their wife as Christ loves and to give themselves up for her even as Christ gave himself up for the Church.

Did you catch that? Read it again.

It boils down to trust. Do I trust my husband to love me that way, that completely, that sacrificially? Hell, do I trust him to simply love me as a faithful and affectionate partner, maybe not to that extent, but a "reasonable" amount? Well then wouldn't I trust that he would want what's best for me, what makes me happy and healthy and satisfied? If I said I refused to buy into the idea of submission I'm saying I think all he wants is to have power over me and once he gets it he'll use it to abuse me, OR I'm saying I think he's too incompetent to make good decisions that I would agree with...why would I marry someone I thought either that mean-spirited or that stupid?

I do trust my future husband. I know he would give his life for me and not just because he's said it but because I have bone-deep knowledge of his truthfulness. I'm not afraid to submit or even *gasp* use the word obey because he would never ask me to do something that I had a sincere objection to. Note that a sincere objection is not mere whining when he encourages me to work out or eat healthy, obviously those are good things to prod me to do.

There is a Sara Teasdale poem I love that I have quoted to him, and the last couple lines are "And 'Master' I will say to you/because you never asked me to." That sort of says it all I think.

The second thing I was thinking about was the current controversy about the Seattle cop who shot a wood-carver who was walking down the street with a knife...

I can't say whether the officer was right to shoot that man, but the arguments that people are using do concern me a bit.

The question of time and the threat...a human being can cover a pretty good distance in only a second, so someone with a knife within a hundred feet of me? I'd consider that potentially threatening, of course depending on context. Also a bulletproof vest can be easily circumvented with a knife, there are many uncovered areas that bleed seriously, an officer doesn't feel invincible in one I'm sure.

Police officers, Federal agents, those in the military, are often asked to make life or death decisions very quickly and hesitation can mean death for them or bystanders. They have a heavy responsibility. Sometime they make the wrong call.

Several months ago I read "Generation Kill" and discussed it as I went with my love. It described some terrible realities of urban warfare with a non-uniformed enemy that our military faced in Iraq. There were times that Marines had to take out a vehicle that showed no intention of stopping at a checkpoint only to find it was scared civilians they had killed. There was one account of a young boy being killed. I remember the way my eyes teared up when I talked about these horrible possibilities with my fiancé, then boyfriend.

What I said to him I would want to say to every person who puts on a uniform and goes out to try to make this country or this world a safer place for me and you and everyone and struggles with these decisions.

"Hindsight is 20/20. I was not there, in that moment, I don't know what had to go into that decision, I can have no idea what that felt like. All I want is for you not to hesitate because I don't want you to hold back and get hurt or killed. I want you to come home safe."

Of course for my love, when he asked if I would hate him for making a mistake, I added that I valued his life more than many lives of people I'd never met and never would, and would he hate me for that selfishness?

I just don't want to see our law enforcement crippled by hesitation worrying about their careers and lawsuits and media crucifixion...yes, they do need accountability and there are definite boundaries, they don't get carte blanche for wearing a badge...but I don't want good men and women to be injured or killed while they flinch at the thought of the press hounding them about their decisions.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Last night at Theology Pub with Miss Spiro, the subject of discernment and my gut feelings and first impressions of people came up. I find they are often uncannily accurate and yet I ignore them to my own detriment, something I'm working on. I spoke of how they can range from "Danger! Run!" feelings to something very different and I brought up my fiancé...

After meeting him on Facebook and bantering a bit on discussion boards there, he struck up an instant message conversation. I remember having a panicked debate with myself in my head before I gave him a single reply in that more private setting. My thoughts were literally "Do I have the energy for this? He is going to make me seriously attached to him...can I stand to fall in love with him and have my life turned upside down?" I was in a relationship at the time. He lived in another state. He was a couple years younger. He was making noises about enlisting. I could already tell he was on his way to getting under my skin. This could blow up in my face in a spectacular fashion.

I replied.

The rest is...well you know the cliché.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The Bird In The Tree - Elizabeth Goudge

"A thing of beauty is a joy forever, but it must be a costly and strong beauty, purchased at a high price of service or sacrifice, not skin-deep but bone-deep, if it is to be as desirable at the shabby end as it was at the sumptuous beginning."

"Lucilla had never been able to understand Nadine, and blamed her lack of understanding upon Nadine's Russian grandmother. There was no understanding the Russians, a tiresome people, all quite mad."

"If people could not look nice when they thought, said Lucilla, then let them cease from thought, for evidently they were thinking more than was good for them."

"With women, you never knew what would scare them and what wouldn't."

"'We all of us try to make God in our image,' she said. 'It is one of the worst of our temptations.'"

"Ben and Tommy were exuding from every pore that icy disapproval which a man, disappointed in his female relatives, can express so well in utter silence."

"He disliked being prayed for. He didn't think it was fair. For all you knew, under the compulsion of it, you might find yourself doing something heroic that you didn't in the least want or intend to do."

Friday, February 11, 2011

Let's try this again, shall we?

When a girl anticipates a move across the country, she should probably restart her blog to keep the far-reaching family and friends updated.

No promises, but you might hear some interesting things about me, my future husband, and our life as we prepare for our marriage and move to a Marine base. Now if the Corps would just give us enough information to set a wedding date...who am I kidding, I will have like, two weeks notice if I'm lucky. *smirk*