Army Mom’s Safe Haven


They handed you to me
gasping life into your lungs
and my hands touched
you for the first time

I counted fingers
and toes
and decided on a
word for you:

Awake, in your crib,
you would focus on
my face
and smile a lopsided
and the word, I decided, was

Walking, stumbling,
full of pride
with each step,
and laughing when you fell,
and my word for you was

Eating Cheerios in
your high chair, you only
used one finger, carefully,
and the word
I thought, was

Speaking first words,
and then that most
wonderful word of all “Mom”;

Nursery school,
drawing cars, you wanted
to drive a taxi when
you grew up…
Drawing your family,
you drew your grandparents,
and you and me
(of equal height) ~
my word was: “Bright”

Elementary school homework:
Name 3 Things You Need to Survive
The teacher told me you
My Mommy.
That’s how I can stay alive.

High School, not such a
happy time
and my word

Two Recruiters, one afternoon,
sat in my living room
explaining the benefits
of the Army Life
and you signed
on the dotted line

Are you sure? I asked
and the words you said
“Yeah, Mom! I’ll be fine.”

You, walking out the door
and never looking back
I knew you were
no longer mine.

No matter how
far you are,
or how near ~
I have always
loved you, dear,
and we have had
our silences
and now and then
a quiet war…
And I’ll admit
I sometimes
don’t know
what your anger’s for
But my love is
strong enough for two

Do not keep silent
for too long
I’m not your enemy
I was never
your enemy
I love you
Can’t you see?
You can forget me
for awhile –
I’ll still be here
When you decide
to look at me
and smile…

The only child
I ever had
So proud of you ~
But, I hope you know
It is just the things we love,
that go.

©Copyright 2005 by Christina