Love and Loss and Learning

It has been a preoccupied set of days ever since the text message arrived on the 15th. My stepdaughter was asking me to call, wishing to tell me that her beau of the last few years was now an ex. I tried to hide my excitement at the news.

It was not that he was a bad fellow – he was simply not a warrior. He wasn’t anything even approximating that. And I feared for her that fate of so many strong women: the weak, controllable man. It is a snare that far too many fall into because you at first are so relieved to find someone who can enjoy your strength and they might even at first appear to match it. But over time one can see the evidence mounting and it becomes a tiresome business, being in charge.

She escaped to Texas, an 18 hour drive without AC (?!) and with two dogs who thought they were going to hell. She stopped near the border for the night. She arrived here in the evening and fell into a deep sleep of peace.

The dogs, however, slept hardly at all. Ranger was suddenly and irrevocably in love with Luna. Caught here in their lover’s communion you can see her lovely blue eyes and delicate snout that Ranger licked softly.

We laughed all weekend that at least one of the visitors was enjoying their love life.

Shopping was done, it being the perfect therapy for a girl, and meals out with friends for distraction. Trooper worked much of the time so we managed what we could to entertain. But she vowed it was sweet to simply sit and do nothing at all. She works two jobs – well, volunteers as EMT to gain a real experience set that her class cohorts are not even approaching at this time.

Connections were made with Air Force personnel who might be helpful in getting them to ignore her genetic junk in the trunk so that she can manage an entry in January. Smart gal, not wishing to deal with boot camp in Texas in summer. She was dutifully reminded of time passing as she spoke with a friend’s son – hardly 15 – who was completeing a variety of training for PJ try-out as soon as the law allows.

I think she was saddened at the time wasted, of how she delayed that service already for the man and his fear that she’d find someone else. And now…telling her to just be patient as her life now is not what it will be in a mere 4 years.

Her goal is flight nurse with a 6 year promise at least. We cannot help but imagine handsome officers of good character and strong souls who would welcome her candor and mutual strength. As happens too often, she feared that strength equaled “caustic bitch” because “men” have always punished her for it. No, no…one simply must look harder for that one who will see that character and appreciate it. No where better, I think, than in that field of endeavor.

And now she wends her way home, already across the border and preparing to work again in the morning. Hopefully, full of hope and the knowledge that she can manage this transition with ease if she’ll just set her sights a bit further ahead.

Ranger, though, is inconsolable.

4 responses to “Love and Loss and Learning

  1. Please give your step daughter my best. I'm so happy to see another of our youth choose a military life. I'm sure she'll be great. 2 jobs including volunteer EMT? You and Trooper did good with her and I give her a veteran/public safety salute. She renews my faith in our young people.

    As for poor Ranger. Trooper is feeling his pain. There was this cute Golden that one time…

  2. Oh, I shall! (To give proper credit, she works the 12 hr EMT as a volunteer and another job for 6 hrs – with some doubles – to make ends meet.)

    Poor Trooper – a broken puppy heart is a sad thing, indeed. But…a Golden?! I expected better…

  3. She will do well. We've all fallen into that, easy going, non defensive malleable personality that seems like a drink of cool water at first and then just feels like a tepid bath as we languish in what was once something bubbly and warm.

    8 years ago I ended a six year relationship for that very reason. He married within months, simply wanting someone who was nice and a good cook, not a passionate warrior.

    I'll only settle for someone that loves me with the passion I feel but without the choke collar and control. He's out there, I'm sure of it.

    Your daughter's life will take on a direction she never dreamed of and these few moments of sadness will be like dust she'll eventually sweep from under her bed.

  4. B, as always, you put it in far better language than I could have. I just wish I could show her how much she and her life will change…you can explain nothing to the young. LOL

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