nick A Veterans Appreciation for Home

Nick’s Wife Pam Welcomes Him Home from Iraq

Guest Blog Post by Nick Colletti

“Appreciate the little things in life.” We have all probably heard that expression before, but how many of us TRULY understand the concept? We all have traveled different paths in our lives that have either intersected or deviated from each other, and that’s perfectly fine. That’s all part of the road map we call life!

As an honor to Veterans Day, I was given the opportunity to share some of my own experiences with you. My name is Nick Colletti, and I am an Affiliate Service Manager for the Northern Region at the Coldwell Banker corporate office in New Jersey. I spent 8 years in the Army National Guard as an Infantry soldier. During my time in service, I was deployed on multiple stateside missions, as well as overseas tours.  My first year long deployment was to Guantanamo Bay Cuba performing detainee operations, and my final deployment was a year-long tour in Iraq in 2009.

Although my combat tour ended a few years ago, I can still vividly remember fixating on all of the little things I could be doing home during that time. The things I was missing out on…. The things I took for granted….. Should I have McDonalds today or Burger King? Do I get out of bed or hit the snooze button one more time? What should I do on Friday night? As trivial as these decisions may be, they are just a few of the many freedoms we each possess in this country. In Iraq, a few memories I would often find myself day dreaming about included watching the snow fall from the safety of my heated living room window as a kid,  going for a joy ride after begging my father for the keys to his car, and enjoying time with my family on football Sunday. These types of memories are what kept me “Home”, even though I was thousands of miles away in a combat zone. Simple, yet precious memories that truly helped me find comfort in a harsh reality. The more time I spent away from home, the more I began to appreciate all of the freedoms I had enjoyed previously. Like many other Veterans, my memories made me realize and appreciate the true value of home.

With that being said, I would like to personally thank all Veterans, both past and present who have honorably served this great country. I also would like to wish each and everyone one of you a Happy Veterans Day.