Most of these missions consist of instructions on what needs to be painted, planted, cut, carried, taken away or picked up and brought home with the admonition: "It's fragile. Don't drop it." Last week, shortly after I made the egregious error of offering advice on a tint of paint, one of our friends called the MOTB and asked whether our daughter would like a memento from his collection of rare equestrian equipment. The MOTB asked, "Don't you also have a collection of antique diving helmets?"
"Yes," our friend replied, "but why would your daughter want a diving helmet?"
"She doesn't," the MOTB answered. "I want you to lend me one so my husband can wear it until the wedding."
All this "mother power" reminds me that a decade ago, Saddam Hussein promised the mother of all battles when we crossed into Iraq from Kuwait. While we were en route to Baghdad, a major sandstorm brought combat to a halt for nearly two days. The troops dubbed it MOASS -- the mother of all sandstorms. The Marines also have this expression: "Indecision is the mother of flexibility." All of this has been brought home to me as we prepare for "The Big Day."
But here's the good news: It's all going to go off without a hitch. There won't be any members of the so-called mainstream media hanging around and hoping for something to go wrong. There won't be a dust storm, sand flies or scorpions. Unlike the places where I have spent the past 10 springs, the air will be full of the fragrance of flowers; all the women will be beautifully attired; and the pastor of our daughter's church will call on God Almighty to consecrate this marriage.
Peyton, her husband-to-be, is a talented and successful young singer and songwriter. He and my daughter met in elementary school. Before he asked for our daughter's hand in marriage, he came to us and asked us to bless his request. Before he went to Afghanistan last year, we talked at length about what to expect. It's his great voice on the audiobook version of my latest novel, "Heroes Proved."
And then there is the best part: When it's all over, I'll be able to kiss the MOTB and tell her what a great job she did pulling it all together. I've tried that before -- with mixed results. A while back, in an effort to score some points as a largely absentee husband and father, I told her, "I've spent much of our 44-year marriage far from home. You have done a magnificent job raising our children."
She nodded and said, "You're right. But I'm not finished with them yet."
Oliver North is a nationally syndicated columnist, the host of War Stories on the Fox News Channel, the author of the new novel Heroes Proved and the co-founder of Freedom Alliance, an organization that provides college scholarships to the children of U.S. military personnel killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. Join Oliver North in Israel by going to www.olivernorthisrael.com.
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