Scotty and Tiffany Smiley

I did not have a blog post planned until late evening September 10, 2017.

I was sitting down at the table chatting with Scotty after we had put the boys to bed (or so we thought!). We both heard sniffling and crying from their bedroom, which is not normal AT ALL.

I ran upstairs to see what was wrong, our 8-year-old was bawling, he said, “Mommy I was praying for daddy, and I’m just so sad that he almost died and someone tried to kill him.”

ARGH! What do you say?!

A few weeks ago this same tender hearted boy was going through his daddy’s high school memorabilia and college papers when he ran across pictures of his dad when he still had full sight. He saw him as a Cadet at the United State Military Academy.  This little boy has never known his dad with eye-sight, so he cried when he came to the realization that something very bad happened to take that sight away.

Someone took something away from him. I have written about my boys before and this military adventure with them, but this sweet open hearted boy of mine feels all the feels. He saw pictures of his dad as he should be, he saw pictures of a dad that could’ve throw a football and run around the park.  He realized in a new way, that yes, his dad’s life was spared, but he also had to learn to live a whole new way.  

A few weeks later, I find him crying again, it’s not something that ever goes away. This little boy prayed and continues to cry over the loss of something that should have been there.  We talked about forgiveness, we talked about God having a plan for us all, and when I shared that it was okay to cry and feel sad, I expressed how sad I was when I realized his daddy was blinded. How I mourned for the loss, but still showed up every day to pray with daddy, to support daddy, to stand in the gap for daddy. I shared that there were so many days that I was scared to continue, but God sustained me and God gave me strength. When I shared all this, something magical happened, this small 8-year-old sat up in bed and wrapped his little arms around me, as if he understood my pain, my heartache. It was as if he knew the feeling. It was the first time I felt that I was not alone on this journey, it was like an angel reached around me and said, “I get it.”

Scotty and Tiffany Smiley

September 10, 2001:

I was a junior in college, studying to be a nurse. I was dating a hunk of a man, a soon to be West Point Graduate and the future was extremely bright. I had not a worry in the world. Kids were far from my mind.

September 10, 2017

I have 3 boys who have walked this journey with Scotty and I. People cry when we say Scotty has never seen his kids. But like I told my sweet 8-year-old, God has a plan for us all. Daddy wanted to fight for America, to fight for what is good and right, and there will always be people who don’t want the light, but he stood for what was right and God saved his life.  

It was hard to explain it all, I mean it is not a normal thing to have your dad blown up by a bomb, but for the 1% of Americans that serve, it sure is. It is my boys’ reality and although it makes them different, I believe it will make them faithful warriors. Warriors for God and country and after 9-11, I think we want more of these kids. They are our future, they are our hope for peace and they are our light.  

9-11 Changed our lives, it changed my sweet boy’s life, they will grow up knowing the impact, and the magnitude of that day in 2001. It changed all our lives whether you realize it or not. And as I sat there with my little 8-year-old with tears rolling down our faces, we prayed.  Because what else can we do? Where else can I teach him to go? We are brought to our knees by the darkness, and He faithfully brings us right back into the light.

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