If Only In My Dreams

"I'm dreaming tonight
of a place I love
even more than I usually do
and although I know
it's a long road back
I promise you..."

Family has always been important to me. Growing up as an Air Force brat, we rarely lived near family. Driving 300 miles or more for the holidays was commonplace.

As I've grown older, I've come to value my family relationships more and more. I understand what my parent sacrificed to make sure that we knew our extended family and spent as much time with them as possible.

"I'll be home for Christmas.
You can count on me."

If you've been around here for a while, you know of my enormous respect for the men and women in uniform and their families. All of them sacrifice so much to help protect the gift of our freedoms. Families who "keep the home fires burning" while their loved ones are deployed, either domestically or internationally, hold a special place in my heart, because my mom had to do just that. While my dad never had to fight in a war, he served two remote deployments, each for a year, where he had to be away from us. He served several smaller temporary duty assignments through the years as well.

"Please have snow and mistletoe
and presents under the tree."

It's never easy to be away from family, but the holidays are exceptionally difficult. Whether the loved ones are serving across the country or halfway around the world, it's hard to be merry when someone is missing. E-mail, Skype and cell phones can help, but nothing takes the place of a real-time hug.

"Christmas Eve will find me
where the love light gleams."

So if you are of the belief that has you celebrating this season, hold your loved ones a little closer. Hug them a little tighter.

And if your loved ones are serving our country and can't share the holidays with you, know that many hearts are with you.

"I'll be home for Christmas, if only in my dreams."

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