Many of us are related to or friends with veterans and have probably expressed some sort of gratitude during the past few days in giving thanks to them. I spent some time recently reflecting on whether saying “thank you” was enough. How do I properly convey what I mean when the experience of service is far removed from what I experience in daily life? When my father hears it, does it make him feel appreciated, for example?
When I think of sacrifice and veterans, I typically think of things like time, family, and life in general. What I don’t normally think of is their continued sacrifice … things like lost friends, missed opportunities to enter other forms of employment, lost career advancement (due to time served in service), change in personality, and change in family/spousal relationships.
Many of us civilians live our lives in a bit of a bubble. We wake up, get our kids off to school, show up to work, return home, assist with homework, and shuttle our kids off to activities. Hopefully, if there’s enough time left after all that, we finish out the day with a hot meal together at the table. We repeat that cycle several times a week until it’s the weekend, and most civilians never have to worry about being re-stationed, being activated into duty, or dealing with images from service that can’t be unseen.
Military service can mean a departure from those familiar, everyday comforts, sometimes for many months at a time. It means being willing to leave all of that behind and taking the risk of something happening to you in the line of service. That’s what I think makes it so hard to convey when trying to adequately say thank you. Veterans Day is a holiday where we hug family members who served a little tighter and show our appreciation in whatever way we can to those who we don’t know too.
I’m fortunate to lead a company that focuses on giving back generously to the community, and we’re proud supporters of Veterans Community Project, an organization dedicated to ending veteran homelessness in America. If you’d like a unique way to show your thanks this Veterans Day, check out their great mission and donate at the link below:
Want to support veterans even more? Check out these other awesome veteran-forward organizations for other ways to say thanks to our vets:
This weekly Sponsored Column is written by Mike Miles of Fountain Mortgage. Located in Prairie Village, Fountain Mortgage is dedicated to educating, and thus empowering, clients to make the best financial decision possible for their situation. Contact Fountain today.
Mike Miles NMLS ID: 265927; Fountain Mortgage NMLS: 1138268