Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Cyber Communication (email, IM’s, etc) (11/04/10)
TITLE: Filling Daddy's Shoes
By Tammie Smith
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I sprint down the hall to the living room, slipping as my sock feet try to grasp the tile floor. My heart thumps as I open my email folder.
I tremble with trepidation as I click the send and receive button. My heart fractures when I realize I don’t have any new emails. Choking back my tears, I refuse to give in to the emotions trying to overcome me.
I walk back to my bed to cuddle with his pillow. I stare at the picture of my little family on the nightstand. My husband looks stately in his uniform holding our four-year-old son. Looking into the face of my son, I see my husband. My eyes shimmered with the tears of the day. This was the day we said, “See you soon” since he was leaving for Iraq on that day. That day was six months ago, I speculate if we will look different. I know my blonde hair has gotten longer, and I have lost some weight.
He will write tomorrow. He has to write tomorrow. It has been about two weeks without any words from him.
“Stop!” I say loudly. “Do not think about why he hasn’t written or called.”
“Dear Father, please keep my husband safe in Iraq. Help me to remember he isn’t avoiding communication with me. It is hard at times to use the computer and phones. Let me only think that he is safe and will write when he can. Amen”
“Mommy you awake?”
I open my eyes to find myself nose to nose with my four-year-old son.
“Adley, what are you doing?”
“Ekymo kisses,” was the only reply I receive as he bounds out of the room.
Realizing I will not be able to relax with him up and moving, I climb out of bed. I pour myself a cup of coffee. The strong smell of coffee envelops me as I sip the rich warm liquid on this brisk January morning. I re-open the laptop with a hopeful feeling. Once again, I feel disappointed that I have not received an email.
Snuggling into my sweater, I step out on the balcony and gaze up at the puffy clouds. It is such a beautiful day, but my heart is sad. I find it hard to enjoy the splendor of the German countryside.
“Mommy, why are you crying?”
I touch my face and become conscious of my tears.
“I just miss Daddy. I want him to write me a letter on the computer.”
“I’m sorry,” he said while hugging my leg.
That evening after I put my son to bed, I open my laptop and my heart fills with such love for my son. I find a large piece of construction paper taped to the screen of my laptop.
A large red heart covers the paper with the words I love you love daddy.
I walk back to my son’s room and gaze at the joyous little man that gave me the best gift I could receive.
I finally receive an email from my husband.
His email clarifies the reasons for the long silence. The base where he is located disconnected the computers and phones. He mentions it has been a rough couple of days, and without any details, I knew what this meant. I feel irritation towards him for not writing, but I realize it was not up to him.
Instead of being angry with him, I reply about our wonderful little boy's loving gesture. I decided to take this opportunity to tell him how proud I was of him for being such a wonderful role model for our son, and how much I loved him. I informed him that he was my hero, and our son’s hero.
Although it is wonderful to receive an email from my husband, I find myself thinking of the email my son gave me.
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