Growing up, my mother who was born and semi raised in Puerto Rico, always made sure we knew what America stood for and how to appreciate the American Flag. My grandfather served in the Army and she always tells me stories of where he had been, what he would send her, or the letters he would write. Sadly, he passed at an early age but she always kept her patriotism alive through him, her children, and her grand children.
Both my grandfathers served in the Army and I make sure my children know that. My mother’s father passed away before I was born but he lives through my mother and all her stories. My grandmother remarried to my other grandfather who also served and I was able to hear all of his stories growing up. Now that he’s passed as well, I find myself yearning to be a little girl again, sitting beside him and listening to all his stories of when he served. I miss him everyday.
The other day, we were walking into our local grocery store and there happened to be a Veteran standing outside collecting donations in exchange for the poppy flowers they hand out.
Aiden asked, “Mommy, who is that? What is he doing there?” I explained what a veteran was, what they did for our country, and why the older man was standing outside handing out the poppy flowers in exchange for donations. On our way out of the store, I stopped and opened my wallet to give him his donation. Aiden stuck his tiny hand in his pocket and started looking for something. I was listening to the Veteran tell one of his stories when all of a sudden I saw Aiden stick his hand out, revealing a crimpled up one dollar bill. “Thank you for protecting us.” My heart melted. Tears filled my eyes, I had no idea he was going to do that. I usually give him a dollar when we are in stores so he can get himself a treat and he saved it for this.
I looked up and saw the Veteran had the same reaction as I did. “How old are you, son?” He asked. In a very proud manner, Aiden responded, ” I’m six years old, how old are you?” He laughed and said, “Too old. Do you know, I’ve been standing here for about three hours and you are the only one who has said thank you.” Tears filled his eyes and he looked up at me. If there was any moment for a picture, this would have been it! But Aiden drained my battery! The man gave him a firm handshake and patted him on his back. He looked back at me and said, “Thank you. You’ve raised him good.” I said, “No, thank you. You’ve given me the chance to.” I gave him a hug and we left with our poppy flowers.
Aiden is always surprising me with little things like this. I can’t believe this is my boy. I’ve tried my hardest to raise him to do things like this, but when it actually unfolds in front of me my mouth falls open. How? Maybe I should just stop asking how and just let it happen, huh? I’m just so proud of him sometimes. That’s my son!
Memorial Day came and Aiden was very excited to walk in the town parade with his baseball team. He has been excited for this ever since he joined. Every year we make it to watch our firemen, policemen, and organizations walk. It had been raining all night and I wasn’t sure if the parade was going to still be on. I got the dreaded email saying that the team wasn’t going to walk due to weather. My heart was crushed. Aiden was so excited and now I had to break the news to him that he couldn’t be in it.
He was sad about not being able to walk but still asked if we could go and wave to Uncle Joey (he’s a fireman and would be walking). Of course! While we were watching the parade go by, I noticed kids with their baseball uniforms approaching us. I quickly double checked the email and it still read that his team was not to walk. I was confused. “Why are my friends walking and I’m not mommy?” I was honest and said, “Coach said we weren’t walking today buddy. I don’t know what’s going on.” He seemed affected by it for a whole ten minutes but continued to cheer to his friends as they walked by with their team coaches.
I was so upset! Especially since Aiden really hates baseball, but only stayed on the team because he wanted to walk in this parade with his friends. I thought he might end up liking the sport as we got closer to the end, but nope, the kid couldn’t care less about it. Am I over reacting or would you be angry as a parent if this happened to you? Leave comments below and please, let me know!
At the end of the parade, we went to the fire house and had ice cream sandwiches. Uncle Joey came over, grabbed Aiden by the hand, and brought him over to the fire trucks. He lifted him into one of them and let my cookie play around and look at everything. Afterwards, they went back into the fire house, where the firemen get changed for working fires, and let Aiden try on the gear. Thanks to Uncle Joey for the saving the day!
After a weekend of traveling to spend time with family at my husbands cousins barbque (can’t wait for the next one!), celebrating my best friends 30th birthday, and celebrating Memorial Day; I must say momma is tired! I had so much fun this weekend. Hope everyone had a great weekend! Happy Memorial Day!