Little Dude stole some hearts at the Beaver Scouts Remeberanec Day service today.
He piped up during the moment of silence to say “My Daddy didn’t die.” Then he paused, and looking sad he added, “other Daddies died.”
He broke my heart a little bit at that moment.
As a military wife, I have always found Rememberance Day hard to explain to my kids. I have stayed home in years past, opting not to go to ceremonies by using the excuse that the kids were too young or would be too disruptive. In reality, I think I’ve been avoiding it.
My kids have too much experience with death. They understand Nana died. They understand their grandfather, Bumpy, died before they could know him. They know death is final… and scary.
Explaining why all these people, wearing the same uniform as Daddy, have died is complicated.
I don’t want them fearful for Daddy to go to work. I also want them to understand the sacrifice these brave men and women make for Canada.
They understand their Great Grandmother made airplanes in World War Two but, at least Big Dude, is starting to understand that the men and women currently laying their lives on the line include their friend’s Mommies and Daddies.
For many kids, Rememberance Day is very removed from their lives. They look at the aged veterans and old pictures that have no relation to their realities. Not so in a military community. Our thoughts of remeberance include those veterans from past conflicts, but also encompass those who serve now. Those who protect us overseas and on the homefront, whether injured by a road side bomb, killed on a search and rescue mission or traumatized by seeing too much.
So, all I can do for today is think grateful thoughts. We are priviledged to know all these brave and generous people. We are priviledged they can have an influence on our chidlren’s lives.
As for explaining Remebrance Day… all I can do is answer questions and teach them gratitude… and hope for the best.