Monday, November 11, 2013

A Day To Give Thanks For Their Service To A Veteran

By Margo Hoornstra

Today, I'd like to add my voice to a grateful throng of Americans with a heartfelt Thank You! to all those who served and sacrificed to protect us and our freedoms. All who serve in the military are heroes who have earned our respect, our support and our unfailing gratitude.

Veteran's Day honors them!

On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918, the armistice was signed which ended the World War I hostilities between the Allied Nations and Germany. November 11th the following year was designated Armistice Day. A day set aside to thank veterans for their service. In 1954, Congress declared November 11th Veteran's Day for the same purpose.

 My husband, brother, father, brother-in-law, cousin, uncle, grandfather and great-grandfather are or were veterans. Not career veterans, but ordinary citizens who fought to protect us and our freedoms. My oldest son, like his dad, serves in law enforcement.

Having that type of family history made it easy for me to create and craft Jonah Colt, a multi-decorated war veteran who brings residuals of wartime back to civilian life. Jonah suffers from PTSD. Silently, suffers, because he doesn't want to admit to what he sees as being weak.

He never set out to do much more than have a good time when someone like Cynthia Buckingham literally fell into his life. Alone in his living room on a Saturday, kicked back in the dark brown leather recliner, he’d sat for so long he hadn’t noticed the room growing darker as late afternoon gave way to early evening. A million dollar view through floor to ceiling windows had been a major selling point when he bought the top floor condo five years ago. But when was the last time he’d actually slowed down long enough to enjoy it?
The shades were drawn on a sight that was only worth seeing in the day time anyway. A man made forest was to the right, complete with squirrels, birds and other indigenous critters. And to the left, a precisely trimmed and pruned golf course stretched along the edge of the city. Also man made. Another one of the original attractions when he bought the place, thinking he’d like to learn to play. Then finding out, after a year of lessons, the pace of the sport bored him to tears. He didn’t like golf because he didn’t like golf. Period. Not because he was losing interest in life or in any other damned way becoming depressed or antisocial. Nor was he embarking on any excessive behaviors involving liquor, sex or drugs.
What could he say? Two out of three wasn’t bad.
The last swallow of the two fingers of high end vodka he’d indulged in gave off a subtle heat as the thick liquid slid down his throat and trickled into an empty stomach. As he moved to put his glass on the table, it slipped sideways on a clatter. With his legs pushed down to bring the chair upright, he steadied the tumbler to set it firmly on its base. Then snatched it up as he stood to walk out to the kitchen where he opened the dishwasher, dumped the glass onto the top shelf then slammed the door.
There. Evidence disposed of.
Turning back toward the living room, he stopped and shook his head. Why in hell did he feel so strongly he had to hide anything? Because alcohol abuse is a prime symptom of posttraumatic stress disorder. Which made his over-reaction so much bullshit. One shot of hard liquor—his first in a couple of weeks—and prior to an evening out hardly meant he was a problem drinker. So what made him think maybe he was one? Run of the mill stressors happened to everyone. They were part of being human in a modern world. Part of being alive. What separated man from the other animals of the Earth. Which didn’t explain why he had begun to tear apart every detail of every recollection of his time in the warzone as if he was some psycho frickin’ time bomb set to go off at the slightest provocation.
Because he’d lied to her, and he couldn’t stand himself for it.

He and Cynthia, a counselor specializing in PTSD, have other issues as well. They have enjoyed, what they believe will be a one night stand, and only a one night stand.

Turns out life has other ideas.

Only If You Dare is now available on Amazon. Check it out with a click 
HERE Only If You Dare will be free on the KDP Select Program December 10-14, 2013.
My days to blog at the Roses of Prose are the 11th and 23rd.
More about me and my stories can be found at my WEBSITE or BLOG



Jannine Gallant said...

Jonah is a great hero. Happy Veteran's Day everyone!

Alicia Dean said...

I want to add my thank you to the veterans and active soldiers serving our country. These men and women are true heroes. My dad served in World War II, enlisting when he was only 16. Your book sounds great. I love that Jonah is a military guy.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Jannine. On Jonah's behalf, thank you.

Alicia. How true about veterans. We can never honor those who serve enough. I think Jonah is special, because of his devotion to duty.