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While They Serve
By Edie Melson

Never Forget the Women Who Serve

Female members of our armed services face the same dangers as their male counterparts.

Here in the United States when we hear the term "veteran" we most often think about the men who have served our country. But during this modern age, those men represent only half the story. The rest of the story is illustrated by the brave women who also serve.

God Knows the Way

A simple trust in God helps waylay the anxieties of a self-confessed control freak.

But He knows the way I take. (Job 23:10)

As you might have guessed from following this blog, I’m a bit of a control freak.

I often try to disguise this trait as helpfulness. But to be brutally honest, it’s almost always a control issue. My family and friends are good-natured about this part of my character, but I know it can sometime be a trial.

Don’t Fear the Stillness

How a cat led the way back to spending quiet time with God.

Be still, and know that I am God. (Psalm 46:10)

While my son was on deployment, I picked up some not-so-good ways of trying to cope. One of the worst was to keep myself so busy that I didn’t have time to think. Some days my schedule would be so full that I felt bad taking time for lunch.

Eventually that schedule caught up with me, causing me to wake up most mornings with a stress headache. Those headaches forced me to re-evaluate my routine. As I did, I realized I’d been avoiding my regular quiet times with God.

The Power of Praying Friends

A military mom remembers when God called in the first string.

I remember my son’s deployments like they were yesterday. I still occasionally have nightmares about him being away at war. But they’re nothing like the nightmares I had during his time in Iraq.

Some nights I’d wake up sobbing, or crying out. It’s every parent’s worst nightmare to have a child in danger–even if that child is a big strong Marine.

Spoil Those Military Families!

From donating hotel points to giving a movie gift card, 7 ways you can help out.

Loving someone in the military is tough. Until our son enlisted in the Marine Corps, I had no idea how tough, and I was just a mom. The spouses and children of our service men and women have an even more difficult journey.

As a faith community, we do a pretty good job of supporting one another during difficult times. We bring food to the family who’s lost a loved one. We rally around those facing serious illness. We even know how to reach out when there’s a new baby.

Military Mom’s Sixth Sense

When our children enlisted, we became part of a greater family.

From the title of this post you might think I’m going to be referring to a military mom’s sixth sense about a child’s impending danger.

Truthfully, parents don’t have to have offspring in the military for that sense to be part of our mothering repertoire. I think all moms have that capability.

What I’m referring to is the ability of military moms to find others who have children serving in the armed forces.

Box Up Those Military Memories

How to display generations of military memorabilia.

Yep, you read that right.

But I’m not suggesting you box up those memories and hide them in the attic. Instead, display them in shadow boxes so everyone can enjoy them.

New Year’s Resolutions for Military Families

Ways to bring a healthy body, heart and soul into the New Year.

January 1st always comes with a sigh of relief for me. I can finally pack away last year’s regrets and move on to a clean slate.

To help me focus on moving forward in a positive way, I’ve come up with some New Year’s resolutions for military families:

Every Flag Tells a Story

Massive or frayed, bright or faded, all the flags around the country speak to us.

Loving someone in the military is tough, carrying with it way more than its fair share of stress and hardship. But along with the difficulties comes the knowledge that we’re part of something bigger than ourselves.

Our pride in the soldier we care about should also translate into a sense of pride for ourselves.

A Fog of Fear

I’d been so wrapped up in what was happening, I’d lost my perspective.

I remember those days following our son’s choice to enlist in the Marine Corps. It was a daunting time, filled with pride and a bit of fear sprinkled in.

I was proud of my son’s decision to serve, but in the back of my mind lay a fog of fear about what that service might demand from him.

Over the next few months, as our son began his many months of training, I settled more and more into a sense of pride and excitement. He was following his dream and doing it well.

Edie Melson is a leading professional in the publishing industry. She also knows what it’s like to send a loved one off to war. Her oldest son went from high school graduation, to Marine Corp boot camp, to Iraq; where he served two tours fighting on the front lines as an infantry Marine. Fighting Fear: Winning the War at Home When Your Soldier Leaves for Battle, is Edie’s first book for those with a loved one who serves. Look for her newest book for military families debuting summer of 2015: While My Soldier Serves: Prayers for Those with a Loved One in the Military. You can also connect with Edie on Twitter and Facebook.

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