Some days I don't feel strong.
I feel weak, like a stiff breeze will knock me over.
This isn't a physical weakness, though compared to the Marine there's no doubt my body is weak in comparison.
It's a mental and emotional weakness, and it surprises me when others don't see it in me. When they think I'm stronger than I see myself.
By no means am I a D.I.D. -- a damsel in distress, but I see myself differently than those who rely on me.
The Marine sees me as strong and capable of running the house, caring for our daughter, getting through college with a high gpa, and making sure our life runs smoothly whether he is home or in some random 'stan country.
The Munchkin sees me as strong because I fix her broken toys, read her stories, make the upset tummy monsters go away, and love her no matter what.
The Niece sees me as strong because I respect her, live my life relatively happily in my skin, and don't fall especially prey to the guilt guns our family often mans with shockingly good aim.
My friends say I'm strong, but really what do they see?
Everyone who knows and loves me believes I'm strong, but what they see is usually just a mask.
Yes, I can survive by myself, provide for myself and my daughter. I'm comfortable alone, and don't need approval.
I make it through months without seeing the Marine, and life continues, but sometimes when the world gets too dark, responsibilities weigh me down, and I'm scraping the bottom of my emotional barrel...
It would be nice if there was someone there to hold out their arms, offer a shoulder, or just say, "It's okay to cry. I won't think you're weak. Sometimes it takes strength to let go."
Because, I seem to keep forgetting that.