Mothers Day for a soldier

By Jonathan Hardison

Hayden, Al (WBRC) - Sunday was a heartwarming and heartbreaking Mothers Day for a soldier from Hayden, Alabama.

22-year old Haleigh Worley spent her first Mother's Day as a mom in Iraq, while her 7-month old son Kaden played thousands of miles away back home.

But with some help from the video chat service Skype, mother and son were still able to share a kiss and that maternal bond

"He gets excited," said Haleigh's mom and Kaden's grandmother Michelle Odon. "If he's sleepy he might be ill, but he likes to see them."

Kaden's Mothers Day gift to his mom was a few minutes babbling or giggling in front of a webcam. That is Haleigh's only link to her son while she serves overseas.

"I just try to think about it as any other day," Worley said. "Try not to think of it being Mother's Day."

22-year old Worley deployed in April when Kaden was just 6 months old, joining her husband Michael who left for the Middle East in December. Worley knew then her first Mother's Day with Kaden would be spent in different time zones counting the hours between webcam visits.

"That's when we get to see him," Worley said. "It seems like he gets bigger everytime, he just gets huge."

"It helps," Odon said. "I want her to see how much he's growing and how much he's changing and everything He can see them and stay in touch with them that way. But it is really hard, knowing how much she misses him. That's the worst part of it."

Worley signed on for this tour of duty while she was pregnant. Her family says her sense of responsibility helps her through the heartache of missing milestones.

"I know it's very hard on her, but she's just very strong and she's a lot stronger than I am," Odon said. "She does miss her family, and especially Kaden."

After saying their goodbyes, the countdown started again till the next time mother and son could say "Hi."

"It always brightens up my day," Worley said.

Michael and Haleigh Worley are hoping to return from Iraq in time to spend Christmas with their son.

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