I wish I understood why God answers some wives/girlfriends’ prayers and not others. Why not mine? I guess if prayers could have saved him, he would have lived forever. It’s not like I did not pray for his protection with every ounce of faith I had. I truly believed he would come home to me. But not like this.
Our romance was something out of a fairytale. A true gentleman, like those you thought were just as much fiction as they were charming…I feel head over heels hard. Tim was a volunteer during his spring break for the relief effort for Hurricane Katrina victims. I was helping in the church that housed the volunteers. In 72 hrs time, we shared our life stories and goals with each other and knew we had to see each other again. Over the course of four years, we flew back and forth for short visits during our long distance relationship. He was always worth the wait.
I married the love of my life June 13, 2009. Nine months later, I gave birth to our beautiful daughter, Liberty Hope. We moved to Fort Drum right after she was born. Tim was itching to deploy, to do the job he had trained for for the past 6 years of his life, but was grateful for the year stateside to watch our daughter grow. March 27 of this year, just after Liberty learned to walk, I kissed my husband goodbye. My heart broke for all that he would miss during the deployment, and I promised him I would do everything I could to keep us close with all the letters, pictures, and prayers possible. Now, waiting a year is NOTHING compared to waiting the rest of my life. Tim was killed by an IED on August 23, 2011.
The day before, I had Lasik eye surgery. I came home to video chat with him. He was so excited that I had finally gotten the procedure he had been pushing me to get (but I had been too chicken) and wanted to make sure everything went ok since he knew how nervous I was the day prior. My eyes hurt so much I didn’t open them, until at the end of our conversation when he asked me to peek open just a bit to see if I could see anything. Through hazy eyes, I saw his beautiful smiling face. He told me he was proud of me for braving through it and that tomorrow morning I would feel a new lease on life.
The next morning, when I peeked my eyes open, it was to the sound of my door bell. I just knew. I pleaded with the officers that they had made a mistake, because I had just talked to my husband the night before. Tim was suppose to come home to us!
While I was moved beyond measure by the outpouring of love, support, prayers, and respect for Tim and his sacrifice, I felt cheated out of the life we had ahead of us. While a strong solider, and a dedicated American, he was also my loving husband, faithful best friend, Liberty’s AMAZING daddy, a kind-hearted son, a protective big brother, the ‘fun’ uncle, and a humble Christian. And despite the pain I am in, my faith is not shaken; because I know where Tim is and that I will see him again. I still live on post for the time being. Ironically enough, after coming home from the funeral services was the same time this installation decided it would play TAPS every night at 10pm. I wait every night for the saddest song ever played and offer up my broken heart.
My new lease on life is nothing like what Tim was hoping for me for that night….but my mission now is to ensure that his daughter knows who her father is. As the news headline reads, “America honors the soldier who named his daughter ‘Liberty” …but I will forever love and remember the man who loved her.