He sat in the barracks on a Sunday afternoon and as he sat his thoughts were about life. He pondered his life now and his life later, a life that would include her, the woman he had chosen to be his bride.
As I write this letter to you, it may seem rambling, but, I want you to know that in the quiet of the barracks this afternoon I am thinking of you. I love you, my darling. It has been difficult for me to accept the fact that you love me, as I have wondered if I am right for you. The closer we get to marriage the more sure I become that it is right and that we were meant for each other.
In the barracks with me are several different types of males. Some of them are boys and some of them are men. Once the work is done they each depart the base, going their separate ways. Since we are near the ocean, many seek the warmth of the sun at the beach, hoping to catch a glimpse of a pretty girl, hoping that one of them might join him “catching some rays”.
There are others who engage in pursuits that lead them down a darkened path to destruction because of feelings of hopelessness or despair. Some of these will take their own life before basic is over, others will begin addictions that will be difficult to break later.
Many of the boys seek pleasure in the company of a woman, hoping to relieve the boredom and find a little fun before they have to report back to work. Most of them find little fulfillment in the pleasure they seek.
Then there are the men, those who have chosen to be a soldier, who have found a measure of happiness and contentment in the service of their country. Some of these are enlisted and some of them have been drafted, but all in this category have made the decision to give it their best.
They have come to realize that a soldier’s life is a necessity to keep the country strong and to keep the forces of evil from expanding in this uneasy world. These men love the land of their birth and want to give back a measure of what they have been given. They are prepared to defend the land to death, if necessary, so that the citizens can enjoy the freedom granted to us in the Constitution. This freedom is granted to us by God and it is to be jealously guarded, for it is a precious thing.
As I think about the future, I see that in this life I am now engaged in, there is rank and order, weapons and medicine, airplanes and submarines and such, but I also see a time when this period of time is over and I, and they, will return home.
For one returning home may be to mother, father, sisters or brothers. For another it may be to a job or business. They will rest knowing that all is secure from the forces of evil because others are taking their place.
There are a few who are returning to love, not the love of parents or friends, but the full love of a woman, the one he has chosen to be his wife. That is the most precious reason a man can have for contentment and security. He knows that a job or business can be had with diligence and hard work, and the money it pays can buy what is needed for daily life, he also knows that a man’s parents and siblings are a great comfort, but the love of a good woman is hard to find.
It is in you, my darling, that I have found this kind of love. I was only part man, a boy really, until I met you. When we are joined in marriage I will finally be complete. Together we will make a home. With you I am happy, with you I am contented. I pray that I will be the man you need me to be, that my love will measure yours. May all see how much we love each other.
As we begin our life together soon, we will not have a lot of material wealth, but wealth is not measured in the abundance of possessions, but rather in the intangible things such as our love, mutual respect and caring for one another. In time things will be added to us.
I cannot help but also consider the wealth of family. Our children will be a great joy to us, whether God gives us one or many. The day of our wedding we will make a promise to each other and to our children that our home will be a place where they can learn of life and be secure in love and happiness.
Darling, there is much unseen and unknown at this time. Many things can happen in life and we must be prepared for what may come. It is the love and trust in each other and in God that will carry us through to the end.
I look forward to becoming your husband and taking you as my wife. I am proud to give you my name. The ring I will wear is a circle and reminds me that there is no end, no taking apart what God has put together, it represents my love for you.
I am ready to assume my responsibilities as a man. With you as my helpmate, by my side, I will succeed in life.
May God keep you, my Darling, until we meet again.