It’s hot outside. No, it’s REALLY hot outside. It’s a heat wave in July and most of the country is miserable. We’re complaining. Our air conditioners aren’t able to keep up, the pool isn’t refreshing and our grass is a not so lovely shade of dead. Oh and did I mention that we’ve been complaining?
What most of us fail to realize in our complete and utter state of irritability is that many of our service members have had to endure months and months of this type of heat and much, much hotter. If we think it’s hot here, then we should try visiting an arid desert in the summer, with little air conditioning and work for fourteen hours a day in long sleeves and long pants in full combat gear. Our 100 degree days just got a whole lot better huh?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not criticizing – I’ve been right along with everyone else complaining about the heat. I’ve been grumbling that I hope I don’t spontaneously combust every time I have to walk outside to endlessly water my flowers and garden. What finally woke me up though was the little grin on my husband’s face the other day as I was on one of my tirades. I realized then that I must sound ridiculous to him. I sheepishly decided to shut my mouth.
It’s hot and yes, it’s miserable. But most of us can’t even comprehend the extreme temperatures (hot or cold) that our Soldiers past and present have endured to serve our country. They work in conditions that many of us just simply couldn’t (or wouldn’t) tolerate. They do what they have to do to get the job done. They don’t work under perfect circumstances yet they do it anyway.
It really is remarkable how unconciously we can act just out of sheer habit. It definitely puts things in perspective when you truly start thinking about it. Yes, it’s very hot outside. Take care of yourself and keep a close eye on your children, elderly neighbors, and pets – but it might also be a great time for you to think of those serving and send them a fun care package full of ways to cool off. Here are a few ideas to get your started: drink mixes, mini fans, bandanas and squirt guns. Of course a kind note of thanks usually means more than anything.