I wore my red shoes today.
I did not wear them because I wanted attention or because I wanted to show off my nicely sized calves, which I do work to keep somewhat toned, in case you wanted to know.
The shoes I wore are classic bright red stiletto shoes with an open toe, yet have a constricted and uniformed feel to them.
I wore my red shoes today, but I wore them in honor of him.
He has not seen these shoes or has ever seen me wear these shoes. In fact, I can tell you he does not care that I even wore these shoes. But I care.
He enlisted in the Marines on Sept. 1. He joined to fight for our country, to fight for our lives and to fight for his. He is not my boyfriend, my father, a teacher or even a stranger. He is 17, has one dimple and is smarter than Jiminy Cricket. He is my brother.
To be exact, he is one of my four brothers. Growing up and being an only girl with four brothers was always my way of bragging. “Yeah, I have four brothers. I’m the spoiled one.”
I cannot tell you how many times I have said this phrase. I am sure those of you who know me have heard me say it. The fact is I love having four brothers and I love to brag about them.
But we all live in a bubble where we do not realize what is happening around us until something drastic happens like the attack on Sept. 11, 2001, or Hurricane Katrina. We tend to stay trapped in our bubble until it gets popped. I see this on a day to day basis when someone throws their McDonalds cup out the window or when they smash their cigarette on the ground. Rarely does someone open the door for the stranger behind them or say hi to someone passing by they do not know. If we do not even pay attention to those around us, how are we supposed to pay attention to the rest of the world? Sadly, in my opinion, I think this is impossible.
My brother joined the Marines in order for you to continue holding hands with your boyfriend or continue watching TV as if nothing bad in the world ever happens and for you to continue living your life of freedom inside your bubble.
He will be part of the Marines for the next four years of his life going day in and day out through the pain, the sweat, the blood and even the tears, but he will be doing it for you. He will wear his uniform proudly and hold his head high when he trips, falls down or makes a mistake.
I wore my red shoes today. My baby brother is all grown up now. But because of him and others like him in our military, I am able to do something as silly as wear my red shoes.
I will sadly never become a Marine, nor will I be tough enough to be one, but I honor and respect every single person who has ever had the guts to try. Wearing my tall courageous shoes through campus seems like an odd story, but gives me a reason to brag.
My brother is a Marine.