Have you ever decided to do something special for someone and then taken way too long to see it through? This occurred about twelve ANZAC* Day's ago when I wanted to show my husband how much I appreciated his service to our country – to let him know that this public remembrance was also privately significant.
In rare moments I enjoy creating things of beauty from threads. I discovered a project which contained a small wooden box embellished with a beaded red poppy inset into the lid – a place for my husband to keep the tokens of service that adorn his daily uniform.
Working on the poppy at times when he was not around – not a hard thing to achieve, really – it remained a ‘surprise!’ One ANZAC Day came and went without its completion, two ANZAC Day's, then three and four - with a bead sewn here and a bead sewn there, but no real progress.
As the fifth ANZAC Day approached and ‘the beaded poppy’ lay unfinished I wondered if my efforts matched the depth of my appreciation. I decided that they did not.
Setting aside two full days I spent precious hours threading tiny glass beads onto slender beading needles, placing each glistening little string carefully into place, and installed the finished poppy into the lid of the small wooden box.
Beneath the lid is inscribed this thought: “For years it has been held that peace comes only by preparation for war; the present conflict should prove that peace comes only by preparing for peace…” – J. F. Smith
As this ANZAC Day approaches, the box with the beaded poppy provides a daily reminder that many men and women prepare for peace by being prepared to defend the innocents in war; that daily, families sacrifice to facilitate the preparation; and that private moments which accompany a day such as this are the mirror in which the true spirit of the ANZAC’s is reflected.
“You’re Married to a Warrior,” the next poem in the ‘He Will Return Collection' was written just prior to my husband’s 2013 deployment to Afghanistan. It reflects one of those private moments.
*ANZAC Day - a day in which we remember all Australian's and New Zealander's who serve and die in conflict.