First the announcement that Krista would have to go back to the grim, gray hospital. Then something worse.
Daddy continues. “There’s something else the three of you need to know.”
That would be me, Phil and Wayne.
Mom suddenly finds the napkin in her lap very interesting. Wayne looks terrified. How much worse can things get?
“You’ve heard Mom and me discuss world news like the war in Vietnam?”
Phil shoves his half-full plate to the center of the table. My lips remain closed, but my mind is screaming. No, no, no, no, no! Wayne frowns. He doesn’t understand yet. Krista uses her fingers instead of her spoon to eat her potatoes.
Daddy takes a deep breath. “Well, fighter pilots get assigned to Vietnam for a year. It’s my turn.”
Everything that was important five minutes ago turns into meaningless trash like confetti after a parade. Wishing Chip would kiss me? Way down on the list. Sarah leaving? We’d both survived moves before. Krista in the hospital? She just dropped a notch from the number one position of worries.
Daddy fighting in a war. That’s big.
In spite of my fear, a sense of calm fills me. This is in God’s hands. Jesus knows I need my father. He knows Mom needs her husband to raise four kids, especially one with handicaps.
Two years ago, I had worried about what would happen with a not normal baby. I hadn’t even met the baby yet. I couldn’t be sure if she would be a Patrick or a Krista. I couldn’t picture life where someone was blind or deaf or worse. And while something was obviously off with her, life had been great. Krista’s the best little sister a kid could have. God has taken care of us.
He’s allowing Daddy to go to war? He’ll bring Daddy home.