PagesPat's Ponderings

Monday, November 17, 2014

The Path of Gratitude Leads to Self-Discovery

There's a new challenge over at the Path of Positivity blog. This month’s theme is Gratitude.  I made a star-fold card and am pretty proud of it. I saw it on Pinterest and figured out using pictures only how to make it.
I used a digital image from Ike's Art called Female Troops Bundle. I used 2 images from the set, the first being the image you see on the front of my card. The insignia (rank) on the cap is not on the digi. I drew it on because that was my rank while serving in the 54th Military Police Co. at Fort Ord, California. I made this card to show my thanks to all the Veterans who serve and have served their country.
This month I was given the gift of self-discovery. Every year the school at which I work celebrates Veteran’s Day by inviting servicemen and women to honor them, and each time I met and thanked them as an employee and civilian, even though I, too, had served in the Army. I had never felt comfortable sitting with those older gentlemen who served in Vietnam, Korea and even WW2.

This year I was convinced by the event organizer that the students needed to see and talk with a woman who had served her country, so I greeted and sat with other veterans to trade “war” stories with them. We each visited class rooms and told stories and answered questions. It was heartwarming to hear and be heard, validating my service as worthy of sharing with others. You see, I was a “peace time” soldier. I was in no war, fought no battles, saw no “action.”
I was, however, one of the FIRST women mechanics in the U.S. Army. My company was the last female company to NOT qualify on the M16 rifle in Basic Training, even though my scores would have earned me an Expert medal. I was the ONLY female mechanic in the Motor Pool at Fort Ord, California. I routinely changed tires that were as tall as I was, and eventually assigned to a posting in Germany, getting to see the land of my ancestors. And best of all, my co-worker’s best friend, a stockade guard at the time, became my husband.
I learned that a veteran is a veteran, no matter when or how served. I learned that to belittle my own service was in fact belittling others’ service. I made friends that day, and I am thankful for their service to their country. I am thankful for the opportunity to serve my country. I am thankful for finally recognizing and appreciating my past.
Everyone has something to share with others. Even the most mundane experiences have worth. I am humbled and thankful for learning this.
Here is the inside of my card. It makes a very pretty presentation, both folded and opened. I used the second digi image from Ike's Art to frame that photo in the middle. The digi is a circular patch with the sentiment She Wears Combat Boots Too!! It didn't quite fit into the triangular center on my card so I cut the sentiment out and adhered it around my photo.
And before I tell you all the details about the Path of Positivity's Gratitude challenge, here's one last photo of PFC Martin and a close-up of the circular sentiment.

Now for the good stuff!!

The sponsors and prizes for this challenge are:
A prize package of a $10 worth of images, from DigiStamps4Joy, our guest sponsors this month, for the post or project that the DT deems most inspiring of the bunch.
  • Three digital images from Ike's Art for a person chosen in a random draw based on all entrants.
  • One digital image from Creative Bug Digital Stamps for each person chosen as a DT Delight.
There will also be:
*One digital designer paper (made to order in a few different ways) from Décosse's Dynamite Doodles for one lucky voter who leaves a comment.
*One digital sentiment for every single person who enters the challenge.


Holly Young said...

wow, your card turned out awesome! You did an amazing job figuring it out just from photos. Everyone's service matters - no matter how small. Thank you for your service Pat!

nwilliams6 said...

Pat, this is wonderful! Thanks for everything you did for our country and your creation is absolutely perfect at representing all that! Wow - how cool you did all those great things - giant tires, protecting people, being a sharp shooter and learning all the millions of things you have to learn in the service. Glad you stepped out there and shared your story at your school too. Impressive stuff here! Hugz

Donna Ellis said...

Thanks for sharing about yourself, Pat. I enjoyed your many "firsts" and also the fact that just because a person does not carry a gun or fight in battle, does not mean they are not serving. We are a garden of plants and flowers, serving many different facets of what the garden feeds and benefits from. Great image, too! hugs, de