I have to be brutally honest about something.
Yesterday, Colt and I were out running errands and we had just parked at Academy when a truck pulled in and parked in the handicapped spot beside us. I was trying to finish my coffee before entering the store, so I was just sitting. I glanced over, noticed it was a young couple, maybe late 20s or early 30s. I watched them get out (the woman closest to me) and thought to myself 'Boy, they sure don't look handicapped to me' and carried on finishing my Starbucks and trying to talk Colt into finishing his milk. The longer I sat there, the more they annoyed me because well, I didn't have anything better to think about, I guess.
Finally, Colt and I got out of the car, distractedly passed by the back of the truck, and went inside. We got what we needed and came back out. This time, we walked in front of the truck. This time, I noticed a tag on the front of the truck stating something about the US Army. As I walked between my car and this truck, I noticed a knob on the steering wheel and an extra "gear shifter". At that moment, I started to get it. I put Colt in his car seat and backed out. I went behind the truck and actually looked this time. He had a tag with some kind of award hanging between the numbers. It honestly looked like a Purple Heart, but it was covered by a plate around the edges saying "United States Army" so I couldn't be sure.
This was the day after Veteran's Day. Suddenly, I was so ashamed of myself.
How could I be so judgmental? I wish now that I had parked the car again and waited on the couple to come out so I could thank that man for his service and his sacrifice. I wish I could thank him for being able to sit in my nice warm car, drinking overpriced coffee, without worrying about being blown to smithereens.
So, to that man, his wife, and every other Veteran - Thank you. Thank you for fighting for me, for my son, for my family, for our freedom, and our safety.
Thank you, God, for allowing us to be born into the Land of the Free, BECAUSE OF THE BRAVE.