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The Power of the Cross

            Who would have thought one tiny gesture so many years ago would lead me to where I am today? On a cold night in October 1988 I received something so special, it would change the direction of my life. That was the night I received a cross. If not for that little gift, my life would be drastically different and I would not be the same person I am today.
             I was a young soldier fresh out of basic training stationed in Karlsruhe, Germany. That is where I met the man I would soon marry. In the beginning, we had so much fun together going out. I remember going on picnic's to the river in the little green Audi we had, it was so funny, and if you put a green M&M on it you could not tell where it was because the color matched so perfectly. Those were the good times when we were dating; just enjoying each other's company. Then we got married and had our son. Wow, did things change.
             Here I was: a new mother, soldier and wife but, try as I might, it seemed that I could do nothing right. I couldn't find the time to get everything done. I was getting up at 4am every morning to take our son to the sitters then off to formation and work all day, then back to the sitters, then home to cook dinner and get ready for the next day. I was exhausted and I took it out on my husband. At first, it seemed like we were only arguing once or twice a week and, as time went by, it got worse. By the time we left Germany, we were arguing so bad that I would cry myself to sleep or not sleep at all. I doubted myself and was wondering whether I had made the right decision to marry this man. We were sent to Fort Bragg, North Carolina, where we settled in and things seemed to get better but soon we were back to the constant fighting and arguing. I couldn't take it any more so I took my vacation and went home to California. There, I could talk to my mom and figure things out. Did I want to stay married or did I just want to end this and get out? I spent two weeks with my family discussing my options, and then I boarded a train back to North Carolina.

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