A mothers son goes to Iraq, part 5.

We're very happy to post this ongoing series from Melody Pigg about her experience of being a Marine Mom and watching her son, Marshall, in his deployment in Iraq.

I heard from Marshall a little over a week ago. For security reasons, he's really not able to talk about what they're doing in the sandbox. He sounds very good and still positive about his decision to become a Marine. At least we're not hearing him questioning, "What have I done?" Here I am complaining because of the nightmares and restless nights, and Marshall's talking about sleeping on cots, in the sand, in a little shack made out of plywood and he says it's comfortable. Under those conditions and the volatile area, I know I wouldn't sleep and definitely wouldn't be comfortable.

Over the weekend, I worked a booth with another Marine Mom at a 50th Birthday Celebration of a local neighborhood. This other Mom, Barbara, along with her husband, sister, and brother-in-law, had personally purchased some of the most requested items that the Marines use, and she created care packages for the entire 1/7 Baker Company with these items. That's 250 men! She set up this booth to give the public an opportunity to sponsor either a package or an individual item. As each item was sponsored, the donor was asked to fill out a card with a message to the Marine and that card was placed with the item. It was a very rewarding experience to see such kindness and appreciation from others. Some of the people got very emotional and would express that they felt like they were giving so little to a group of people that were giving them so much. At times like that you are really hit with the enormity of what your child is doing and how all the things that we do daily to make an impact in someone's life or to make this a better world, don't even come close in comparison to what our military accomplish. We can all volunteer our time or sit in the comfort of our home and write a check and then pat ourselves on the back because we did something good, but when you compare that to being able to say, "I'm a Marine and I fought in Iraq" that makes that pat on the back seem pretty insignificant.

When Marshall was home for his pre-deployment leave, he attended his High School's ROTC Military Ball. This time he wore, with great pride, his Marine dress blues instead of the ROTC uniform that he's worn in the past. When he got home late that night and changed his clothes downstairs, he hung his dress blues up and they stayed there for me to admire with great pride. I finally decided that they needed to go back upstairs into his closet. At the time that I picked them up, I really thought that it was time, but once I started that walk, the steps became slower and the tears were flowing. I miss my son. I'm extremely proud of him and the rest of our military. I just selfishly want his hug.


Very Proud Mom of now, Lance Corporal Pigg