Afghanistan - Terri Cole
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Afghanistan

“How do you feel about me going to Afghanistan for an assignment?”

So that is how the conversation started about 6 months ago. My husband, Vic is an illustrator and now apparently a combat artist as well. He is leaving for a three-week embed with a Medevac unit in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan this Thursday.

I had not spoken to any of our grown kids about their feelings about Vic’s trip until I saw Alex, in LA about 3 weeks ago. He said he did not want Vic to go and was worried. “What if something happens to him? What if he permanently injures his drawing hand? What if the trauma he witnesses there alters him forever?” he asked. He also told me that the people in his life were curious to know what I thought about Vic going. Subtext = Why wasn’t I stopping him? Which is a fair question to ask. “Do you think I could and should stop Dad from going?” I asked. “Yes I think you could but no I don’t think you should.” And without saying anymore we both knew why I should not emotionally black mail my husband into doing what my fear would like him to do.

I am blessed to have an amazing partnership and friendship with Vic., but I do not own him. I want him to do what lights him up, adds value to planet earth and fulfills his Dharma. Vic started having kids at 23 and was then widowed for many years with 3 little boys until I got there when they were teenagers. He has spent the better part of his life being dutiful and putting everyone’s needs and desires above his own.

It is his turn.

Vic and I have spent a lot of time in the past 2 months together, traveling, painting our kitchen, seeing friends and having a ball all with the impending separation hanging above us but not between us. The thought of being without him for any period of time has made me so grateful and happy to just BE HERE NOW, in the only moment that exists. Down deep we all know this life trip is a solitary journey and if you are lucky enough to take it with someone you REALLY like, you are lucky enough.

Please visualize Vic walking off the plane on August 17th back at JFK safe and sound. I will circle back and link you up to the wonderful blogs, articles and images he creates from this adventure.

I wonder what your thoughts are on partnership vs. ownership in a marriage.

Would love to hear all about it (if nothing else DISTRACT ME PLEASE!!)

Love Love Love,
Terri

Vic and Terri

terricoleny
3 Comments
  • Joyce Juhasz
    Posted at 01:36h, 29 July Reply

    Beautiful post and I agree completely. With marriage, there is no ownership of one another. Your heart & soul may “belong” to your spouse but that doesn’t mean you should hold them back from doing something they want to do because you don’t agree with it (within reason of course). Alex raised some valid points but I’m sure Vic already considered them before deciding to take on this task.

    He’s got a talent that he wants to share with the world and so he will. Then on his firstborn’s birthday, he will be @ JFK and you will breathe a sigh of relief. So stay strong mama & keep us updated. We can’t wait to see you guys in September!

    • Terri Cole
      Posted at 08:17h, 29 July Reply

      Thanks Joyce! I already heard from Vic so I know he got to Dubai and is exhausted but good. Will update daily on FB! Can’t wait to see you all!
      Love Love LOve
      Ter

  • Michael D. Fay
    Posted at 10:49h, 29 July Reply

    Terry, Victor is doing something so important, both for himself in ways he probably doesn’t fully comprehend (I believe he’s truly a warrior at heart) and for the greater world of art and culture. As much as guys like Steve Mumford and I would like to have a lock on being the preeminent war artists, guys like Vic are going to keep the world of art engaged with the reality of war. One of the deeper issues with being a war artist, is having the support, and I mean REAL support of family. This should be an interesting journey for you, a journey where are best ideas and intentions meet the hard macadam of life.

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