An Open Letter To The Soldier Who Gave It All

An Open Letter To The Soldier Who Gave It All

A tribute to CPT Shane Timothy Adcock, gone but never forgotten. "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." John 15:13

Dear Shane,

I can’t believe it’s been 10 years. Even after all that time, I haven’t forgotten about you. In fact, I think about you everyday. I remember it like it was yesterday, waking up to my teary eyed mother trying to explain death and heroism to a 10-year-old.

I remember chuckling at first, thinking that it had to be a joke. But the grave expression on my mother's face proved that it wasn’t funny. I remember how I questioned God, because I couldn’t comprehend how such a great and powerful God could take away an amazing man. I remember hurting

The hurt began to dissipate, but it was taken over by anger. I was angry with God and I was angry with the person who threw the explosive device that hit the Humvee. I was angry that you had been killed. But more than hurt and more than anger, I was distraught by the fact that I had lost my best friend.

You were my babysitter. You were my best friend. You were the one who listened to my horrible singing and the one who always cheered me up. You were a man of high morals and a friend to everyone you met. You were the one who encouraged so many people. You were the one who enjoyed being around friends and throwing back a beer. You were the one who went to church and ensured that you lived your life in a Christian way. You were the one that left too soon. You were the soldier who gave it all.

It’s truly hard to believe that you have been apart from us for 10 years, but in your sacrifice, I have witnessed the effect that you had on people.

Shane, you brought so much happiness to this world, but not only that you shared it with others. You cared and empathized with people no matter what you were doing and you always put your family first.

Looking back on these ten years, I have seen how much you have shaped the person I have become. I strive to be like you and to encourage others, lend a hand and occasionally a shoulder. You taught me what it looks like to be a follower of Christ. You taught me how to value people. You taught me what it means to stick to your morals. I have learned so much from you; Shane and I know others have too.

I hate that it had to be you, but your sacrifice to this country is so admirable. As we remember you on this ten-year mark, remember that we’re not just remembering you this one day, but everyday. I know that you’re looking down from heaven smiling on us, and I hope you know that I’m smiling right back at you. I love you, Shane. Thank you for your sacrifice and thank you for being my hero.

Love always,


Cover Image Credit: Jennifer Lawrence

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Dear Mom, Now That I'm Older

A letter to the woman who made me the woman I am today.

Dear Mom,

Now that I'm older, I definitely appreciate you a lot more than I did as a kid. I appreciate the little things, from the random text messages to constantly tagging me on Facebook in your "funny" photos and sending me pins of stuff I like on Pinterest. Now that I'm older, I can look back and realize that everything I am is all because of you. You've made me strong but realize it's okay to cry. You've shown me how a mother gives everything to her children to give them a better life than she had, even when she's left with nothing. And, most importantly you've taught me to never give up and without this, I would not be where I am today.

Mom, now that I'm older, I realize that you're the best friend I'm ever going to have. You cheer me on when I try new things and support me in deciding to be whatever person I want to be. Thank you for never telling me I can't do something and helping me figure out ways to be the best woman I can be. Your love for me is unconditional. They say true, unconditional love can only come from God, but mom, I think you're a pretty close second.

SEE ALSO: An Open Letter To The Cool Mom

Now that I'm older, I don't get to see you as much. But not seeing you as much just makes the times I do get to see you the absolute best, and I look forward to it every time. Now that I'm older, I'm not going to live at home. But, I promise to always come back because I know the door is always open. Your house is always going to be my home, and no other place is going to be the same.

Now that I'm older, I realize how much I miss you taking care of me. I miss you making me dinner, making sure I was doing well in school, and taking me to endless appointments. I miss you waking me up for school and then waking me up again because I didn't listen the first time.

But, Mom, now that I'm older, I can see all that you've done for me. I can look back and see how big of a brat I was but you still loved me (and let me live) anyways. I can understand why you did certain things and frankly, you're one bada** of a woman.

To have you as my mom and my best friend has been the best thing that has ever happened to me. So, Mom, now that I'm older, thank you, for everything.


Your Daughter

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This Is What Being Away From Home Taught Me About My Home

... It's ok to make plans with people besides your mom.


My home, for as long as I can remember, has been my safe haven. No matter how many arguments my family and I got into, I always knew my home to be a place where I could feel safe, at peace, grounded, and most importantly, comfortable.

This is why, when I decided to embark on a journey to Israel, 6,000 miles away felt like I was traveling into space. I felt as if I couldn't move forward without my mom by my side, reminding me everything is going to be okay. The relationship that my mom and I have is a special one, and knowing that I was not in close proximity to her created much-unwanted anxiety for us both. Knowing that while she may have only been a phone call away, that she wouldn't be able to come hold me if I needed her to, was something I really struggled with.

While I was away, I had hoped that my excitement for the trip and the adventures that were to come would keep me grounded and sane. Unfortunately, as the days went on, I became more and more homesick. However, I was able to learn some really important lessons in terms of the importance of my home, and sometimes the need to escape it.

The new friendships I made showed me that sometimes it's okay to make plans with people besides your mom (only partially joking).

The new foods I tried showed me that there are so many different types of foods that my chef of a mother hasn't even heard of.

The new experiences showed me just how important it is to step out of my comfort zone, even if doing so means I have to be 6,000 miles away from the comfort of my mom's arms.

There are hundreds of thousands of things that this trip has taught me, but it especially taught me that life exists away from your home as well. While it is natural to want to stay close to the things that bring you comfort, it is also essential that you allow yourself to grow.

I couldn't be luckier to have had such an incredible experience abroad, but I also couldn't be luckier to have been able to come home to a mom that was waiting with open arms and open ears.

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