Discussions

Yesterday was pretty emotional. I had talked to some people in the morning and I realized that I needed to sit down and have a discussion with my husband. I talk to him all the time, but I think I let him know too often how angry I still am at the situation. So I sat and I talked with him. I really opened up my heart and reminded him how much I do love him and that no matter what, that will never, ever change. I laid on the floor and just talked and talked, and it felt so good to be openly communicating the way we once did. I then needed some music so I put on the playlist I had made for him and recorded on to a tape to send him to Afghanistan. I found that I needed more of him, I wanted to hear him too, so I did it... I listened to the tape. It was difficult, I cried through much of it. He talked about being so excited to come home and hold us and hearing those things after the fact is so hard. I had somehow forgotten how funny he was and found myself laughing through my tears. It was great hearing his voice, as emotional and difficult as it was, I enjoyed it. I am so thankful my mom had that idea to send tapes and we have this (albeit, old) piece of technology to keep him, and his voice, alive.

After spending the day talking with husband and holding our daughter, I decided that it'd be nice to have a little Cinco de Mayo action. A good friend of mine watched Ari and a group of friends and I went to Chili's (we tried one of the more authentic Mexican places in town but they were all so packed) and had Mexican food and margaritas. One of Jonny's very good friends has come home from deployment early after getting in an accident. The vehicle he was in was hit by an IED and he, like Jonny, was in the turret. Luckily enough for him, he came home, wearing a back brace, but he's home. It was very good seeing him, but it was also difficult. Some of my friends and him got into discussions about "over there" and I found myself blocking much of it out - too much when I'm trying to relax and unwind. This friend did say, though, that he would love to sit and talk with me about some things over there, which I am looking forward to, some details I don't yet understand he is willing to share with me. I know it will be hard but it is just things I've been aching to know. As well as stories from over there, I'm sure there will be lots of funny ones as well - Jonny was such a goofball.

Today I am just chillin' out for the most part. I need to clean and pack up to get ready for my MD visit, which I am getting excited about, finally. I was a little confusing in my post about this at first, I am not moving back (yet - who knows as far as that goes) I am just visiting for a week. Then back here to JVegas for the 5k (ONLY A FEW DAYS LEFT, check it out, leave a small donation - it all adds up for our warriors!!) then a visit to FL for the fundraiser I mentioned in my last post (that I still can't get the flier to work, gr), in case you wanted to know my life agenda... ha.

Also, I wanted to share something with you, oh great blog friends. Many of you may have seen the "Welcoming Home" videos on YouTube (google Jonathan Porto, it's a 3 part video of his escort from MacDill AFB to St. Pete presented by the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Department). First, here is a video a lovely woman made for me and his family. There is also Trust Fund information at the end of it for those who were asking about that,

Cpl. Jonathan D. Porto - "Bringing Him Home" from DiamondFilms on Vimeo.

And lastly, I wanted to share the video from Jonny's funeral. You friends have been so supportive and wonderful (did I mention that already - ha) that I want to include you on this.
Follow this link, the password is porto.

It may be tough, but I wanted to share it with anyone who wanted to see it.

72 comments

  1. What an AMAZING video. Wow. I'm speechless.

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  2. What a great video to share. Thank you so much. Today I turned 30 and I have been so bummed to turn 30. After reading your story & seeing this video, it makes me realize our time on earth is numbered & I should enjoy every minute of every day.

    You & your family our in my daily prayers.

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  3. Thank you for sharing. He will always be a hero.

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  4. That video put tears in my eyes. Thank you for sharing. You have a hero looking out for you.

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  5. thank you for sharing your video i know its hard on you and i appreciate everything you and your husband have done;; stay strong.

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  6. Well... not a day goes by that I don't think of you. And Ari. And Jonny. I try to put myself in your shoes and knowing that the pain I feel is nothing compared to what you really do feel only brings more pain. I still remember reading your first post about what happenned and it seemed like it couldn't be real. I wish it wasn't. Watching both those videos was hard. I think I've said it before, but I'd never really thought past the knock at the door. It's a reality and pain I can't imagine. But watching the videos made me think about it and how hard that must have been for you. I'm glad you have those tapes. And so many pictures and videos of him. Don't ever stop talking to him because I'm sure he hears you. *hugs and lots and lots and lots of love*

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  7. Thank you so much for putting that video up for us to watch. My heart breaks for your family. It makes me happy to know his family can still celebrate him! You are a strong women.

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  8. Wow, thanks for sharing something so personal with us. I am so amazed at your bravery for speaking, hopefully I will never have to find out if I am so brave. It was very moving and feel honored that you allowed me to be witness to it.

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  9. So, I barely pressed play and had tears in my eyes. What an amazing tribute to him! (I'll have to wait on the funeral one, a bit too emotional at the moment). Thank you for being so open about everything, God bless!

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  10. I cried through the entire video and funeral. I have been through 2 deployments. What you have had to go through is our worst nightmare coming to life. You are a very strong woman and he is very proud of you. It is true what you said in your speech and it is what we do in my family as well. It is never good-bye it is until next time.

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  11. Wow, you are so inspiring! That was an amazing video!!!! Be strong!

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  12. be strong girl friend! Life gets hard, but you are such an example to so many wives! Thank you!

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  13. Wow, his service was really really nice. The bringing him home video had me in tears. I cried so much. It was a wonderful video. Thank you so much for sharing these.

    -- The Civilian

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  14. I watched the funeral and I cried through most of it. I dont even know how military wives can be so strong. You were so strong during our speech and it was so sweet. I know he was looking down on you. You looked beautiful by the way! I know you have lots of blogger friends but I will always be available to talk! My soon to be husband is going to be an police officer. Not the same as military but still scary as crap. Stay strong and God Bless!

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  15. Thnaks for sharing this very personal moment in your life with us. We will continue to hold you close in our prayers, it is good to have more updates from you.

    The video's are amazing, you are such a strong woman, Ari is lucky to have a mom like you!

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  16. you are truly amazing for sharing these videos. they truly touched by heart today. you're husband is truly an american hero. xoxo

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  17. What an amazing tribute to him. He was and will always be a hero. Thank you so much for sharing. You are an inspiration.

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  18. Thank you so much for sharing that was the most amazing video you were both truly blessed to have each other <3

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  19. two posts in one day! good for you... videos were so touching. hugs.

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  20. I cried through the whole thing!

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  21. You are an absolutely amazing woman. He must be very proud of you and very happy with what you are doing. My heart breaks for you, but I know that someday you will see him again. You are my hero. Your husband is a great angel.

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  22. The video brought me to tears. May the Lord bless you and keep you (and your beautiful daughter), and may He shine his light upon you.
    I think of you often, and I pray that with time you find peace.
    You have a HERO for an angel, not the same I know, but he is so appreciated for the sacrifice he made.

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  23. I am sitting in the office of the resident staff here at my college...with tears streaming down my face. You are amazing and when I grow up I hope I have as much strength as you have today.

    Remind yourself and your daughter daily that he is looking out for you from up above.

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  24. Rachel,

    I just watched the video from the funeral. I cried through the whole thing. I am so amazed at what a strong woman you are. ((HUGS)) I am so glad you are able to still hear his voice. I am glad you were able to talk to him. I hope you are doing well, and have a safe trip "up here" love you!!!

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  25. I cried through the whole thing. You are an incredible woman. Your husband is my hero.

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  26. You are so strong. I'm glad you are finding your way through all this. I think of you often and I'm still prayin' God Bless.

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  27. What a beautiful video. His family is so passionate and loving, he truly sounds like an amazing man.

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  28. what a wonderful video.. very hard to watch i cried though most of it.. i have never thought past the knock on the door.. i think about you and your little girl daily... continue talking to him.. i know he hears you and that he is always with you and ari... i will keep sending prayers your way...

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  29. Your husband was, is, and will always be a hero. You are an incredibly strong woman. I continue to pray for you and your family. Hang in there!

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  30. i just wanted to let you i am praying for you and your baby girl.

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  31. Although we have never met... you are on my mind and in my thoughts daily, as well as your precious daughter. My name is Terri and I am a fellow marine wife here in Jacksonville. Your story has touched me so much. You are an incredible person.... If you ever need anything I am just a call or email away! I mean that....

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  32. Thank you so much for sharing these with us. As always, thinking about you and Ari! Hoping that each day brings you a little more peace. I think it is so wonderful that you still talk to Johnny.

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  33. no words...just continuing to pray

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  34. Thank you so much for posting both of these videos and for being so open with us. You are an incredible woman and Jonny was/is so lucky to have you. I pray for you and Ari everyday and these videos brought tears to my eyes. Stay strong girlie <3

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  35. I'm about halfway through your husband' dad eulogy. The USMC will aways be there for you and Adrianna, that is evident from the ceremony. Stick with the men and women you can trust. J. Porto will always be one of the finest and at your back. If I should pass tomorrow, I would appreciate one tenth of the honor bestowed on your husband and Adrianna's dad. I hope she can appreciate how many honor the loss of her dad.

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  36. I cried throughout the entire two videos. What a beautiful family you have. Your husband is a hero for so many reasons. YOU are a hero. I am so proud of you and the strength you seek from God. You are constantly in my thoughts and prayers.

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  37. you show so much grace under pressure. I can't put into words how I admire your courage, just reading your blog. May God have many blessings for you.

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  38. Rachel,

    I do not know you, or your husband. I have never commented on your blog before, words just aren't enough and nothing i said/say could take away your pain. I have followed your blog for a while now, i could sense your tone and excitement in your countdown to have your husband home with you. When i read the note about his passing my heart dropped. The tone has changed dramatically since that day.

    I hope one day you will be at peace and find happiness again. You are so lucky to have been blessed to have Jon's baby to carry on his name, and you will always have that peice of him.

    This video was one of the most touching things i have ever seen in my life. I live on an airforce training base and although i am not a military wife i am thankful for what these men & women do for freedom.

    I cried throughout the entire service watching this. I even had to pause it for 5 minutes after seeing your speak to compose myself. I have the same time of deep devotion to my husband that you had/have to yours and seeing your sorrow and hearing you cry was alot to take in. Seeing his sister speak so highly of you and your love made my heart swell. It is nice to see someone stand so strong beside their man.

    good luck with everything.

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  39. Your story brought me to tears. I didn't even make it to the video. You are one tough girl.

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  40. Wow, thanks for sharing. That was an amazing video. I am truly happy that you had all of that support surrounding you!

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  41. WOW. Thank you AGAIN for being such an inspiration to the rest of us! Your strength literally takes my breath away.

    I left you a mommy award on my pregnancy blog www.preggotimes.blogspot.com

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  42. Rachel, you are so amazing. I cried through the entire funeral video, and I am so touched by the outpouring of love from Jonny's family. Thank you for sharing such a beautiful and personal time with us.

    Not a day goes by that I don't think of you and Ari. I hope that you know how much we all care about you!!

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  43. You are so incredibly strong, Rachel. Watching you get up and speak at your husband's funeral brought me to tears. I know for a fact I would have broken down into hysterics...but you didn't. And for that, I respect you.

    And you're right. There isn't such a thing as "Goodbye." It's just a "see you later." Keep on truckin', sweetie. We're all here for you <3

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  44. You're so incredibly strong. R is so lucky to be blessed with you as a mother and to have been blessed with Johnny...even if it was a short time. I couldn't bring myself to watch the video. We just lost a soldier in my husband's unit.

    I think about you often.

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  45. Btw, I put R instead of A on accident. I caught it right when I hit "post comment". Sully is blogging with me this morning, and that always results in typos!

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  46. Thank you for sharing your video. I'm so sorry for your loss. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

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  47. Today I wanted to tell you a special "thank you". It is Spouse Appreciation Day and I think the grace and love you have shared in the past month has been what being a Military Spouse is all about. I hope you know all the arms of your military family embrace you and your daughter, yesterday, today, tomorrow and always. You will ALWAYS be a Marine Wife.

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  48. I have no idea how you even watch the videos! I cried...but Glad to hear Jonny was a Red Sox fan! :) and even though I cried I liked how his sister said how you lit up his eyes and life! So sweet! Thank you for sharing and you are so strong and great! Hope Ari is keeping you busy!

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  49. I admire your strength through all of this. While I am suffering a loss that is very different from your own, you inspire me to believe that while things may no be easy, putting one foot in front of the other, and just taking things a minute, hour and day at a time, life can continue. Lots of love for you.

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  50. *hugs*

    I've been peeking in on your blog for a while now and just want to say that my heart is with you. Sharing these videos, such an intimate part of your life, is a selfless act, so thank you.
    May you continue to find the strength each day.

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  51. :-) you are absolutely amazing. I'm so happy that you have all the support that you have and thanks for updating ari's picture (from the last post) ! Such a cutie!!

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  52. What an amazing video...my husband and I cried through the whole thing. You are such an incredible woman, and you are in my prayers daily.
    ~ Bethany

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  53. Happy Military Spouse Appreciation Day! I think about you and your adorable baby girl all the time. Your husband must be smiling down on you both and so proud of you!

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  54. This is probably off topic from what everyone else is saying - but maybe it will make you laugh. I totally feel you on the Cinco De Mayo thing.... we also tried to go out to 2 different Mexican places and they were packed....so we too wound up at Chilis. Haha. It made me laugh when I read your post.

    Thank you for sharing the videos. I am going to watch them when I get home from work.

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  55. I had every intention of writing a long comment about how beautiful your hero's funeral was..but I am sitting here and my head is spinning and I am speachless. We to are a military family and I just can not begin to imaine the pain and hurt and emotions you must have. I admire you for the way you carry yourself with such poise after such a devistating loss. I admire you for getting up and carrying on, not only for your beautiful daughter, but for yourself. You are an amazing woman and mother.
    I hurt for you and Iam praying daily for you! I can not even imagine being in your shoes!
    May God bless you and your daughter!
    Your husband would be so proud of you!
    XoXo
    Jacylann
    Army Wife

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  56. I just tweeted/facebooked a "Happy Military Spouse Appreciation" message to my friends, and then remembered you... And now I'm sitting here with my 3 year old, telling him Daddy will be home from training tomorrow... And in tears for you and your little girl. I am so sorry for your loss. I am so proud of your husband. I want to say something, but I'm not sure what that something is. Just know that tears are falling for you. Prayers are being said. Hold onto that sweet babygirl. Keep talking to your hubby. He has his arms around both of you. God bless you both. XOXO.

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  57. Gorgeous video.
    You're terrific.

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  58. Thank you so much for sharing those. I am so glad you have so many loved one around you and so much love and support from all of us!

    ♥ Mrs. S.

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  59. I am a first time commenter as well, but have been reading your blog for awhile. I am an Army wife (Infantry), and your story touches my heart and breaks it at the same time. I have thought of you and your daughter every day since I found your blog, I hope you know many "strangers" are thinking of you and praying for your little family.

    Thank you for having the strength to share these beautiful videos.

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  60. You are still always on my mind...along with Ari! It's funny I find you coming up in conversations with my other military wife friends, talking about what an inspiration you are & how strong you are! You really are changing the face of Marine Wives & I absolutely love it!!! Thank you for showing the world what it is to be a Semper Fi Wife!

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  61. Thanks for sharing your videos with all of us. We were in FL during the funeral and agonized with you and the rest of the world. Please know that our thoughts and support will follow you and your daughter forever.

    Navy Mom

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  62. I'm so very sorry to hear of your loss. My thoughts are with you and all your loved ones during what must be a difficult time for all of you.

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  63. Your husband is a hero. Marine wives as well as other wives of any military branch are the heroes who are left behind at home and are often forgotten and not appreciated. Yet you are the ones who are there for the men fighting, you are the ones who spend holidays and important events separated from the one you love, and you are the ones who stay strong for them. In your case you have also had to pay the ultimate sacrifice and I am so sorry for that. But remember your husband loves you and your daughter and he loved this country that he went to fight for.

    Having Marine friends I know that the reality of what could happen because of their job is always there. I found your blog by accident but I am glad that I did. Your husband sounds like an amazing man and your daughter is lucky to have you as her mom. You are handling this with strength and grace that many people would/could not. I can not even imagine the pain and hurt that you are facing. I want you to know that my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this time. Thank you for the service your husband has paid to our country and thank you for yours as well.

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  64. Goodness gracious, woman. I know I've said it with every comment before, but you have got to be one of the strongest, bravest, most courageous women I know. I watched both videos and of course I'm not in tears. Both videos were very touching and great tribute's to your Angel. My heart and prayers are still with you and your baby :).

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  65. Great post! Just stumbled across your blog and love, LOVE it = ) New follower and just wanted to say hi. Have a great day!

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  66. Mrs. P,
    I sit here crying as I watched that video and prepare to bury a family friend's son. He was killed on Sat May 8, in Afgan and leaves behind a wife and 6 month old daughter. The minute I heard the news I thought of you. Thank you for being so open about your journey. I hope to give Brooke (Kyle's wife) your blog address and that if or when she is ready maybe you two can connect and be a support for eachother.
    Thinking of you and baby A all the time. Be safe in your travels.
    Pat

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  67. I have moved beyond tears and right to sobs watching that first video- and I still have the second to go. My husband is gone a LOT.. so we talk on the phone a good bit. That song has always always always reminded me of him, and associating your husband's funeral with my husband was very emotional.

    I'm glad you finally got to listen to that last tape, and found things to laugh at through your tears. I hope all of the tapes bring you comfort over the years. Maybe there's a way to transfer them to digital, so they can be saved electronically??

    Take care of yourself.

    Take care of yourself.

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  68. I cried and cried and cried as I watched your videos. It just seems so unfair. It's hard to understand. Your Jonny is a hero that's for sure and was very loved by friends and family.

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  69. i don't know you, but I have prayed for you and your little girl. As a marine wife, I cannot even begin to fathom what you're feeling. You are certainly living our worst nightmare, but you are so strong. I watched those videos and cried my eyes out. You truly are an inspiration to us all. Stay strong, and Semper Fi

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  70. I always saw the link and the video clip and I could not bring myself to watch it. When I pressed play and heard the opening lines of Lonestars "I'm already there" I immediately started tearing up. Rachel, the service you and your husband have done for this country is inspiring and from the bottom of my heart I want to thank the both of you. From all the love and prayers that I can send from far away.

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  71. Mrs. P,

    I will start by saying that i came across your story in a European Edition of the Stars and Stripes. I am an Army Wife, Army Sister, Army Daughter, and Army Brat :0). I was so touched by your story and I continue to read over your blog. My prayers are with You, your beautiful daughter and your and Mr. P's family. You have an inspirational story and I admire your sense of humor, strength and devotion to the Mr. I pray you find happiness and God heals your wounds. I pray that your daughter grows to know what a hero her Daddy is. I have cried throughout your blog and laughed with you too.
    My husband and father have been through multiple deployments, and now My brother is joining that band. I remember how much anguish i felt with there absense and fear. I cannot begin to imagine what you have been through. And pray you have nothing but the best. God bless you from Germany!!!

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