For some, the Fourth of July is about fireworks and barbecues and fun. And that’s okay. In fact, we should celebrate our freedom to congregate where we want, with whom we want, when we want. But we shouldn’t forget how we arrived at that freedom. And the cost of maintaining it.

I think about that not just on the Fourth of July, but every time another terror attack that kills scores of innocent people hits the news.

My ex asked me the other day if I would allow our 6-year-old daughter to fly as an unaccompanied minor for a trip he was planning. My answer was a resounding no. Not just because she’s only 6 but also because I am all-too-frequently reminded that the sense of safety—the freedom—I used to feel traveling even within our own borders ended on a sunny September Tuesday almost sixteen years ago.

I still travel. I will continue to exercise that freedom. But I am not blissfully unaware of the risks associated with that choice. And I will make darned sure someone who will give their life for my daughter is with her should the unthinkable happen.

Patriotic Gestures ebook cover 2016 web 284The desire to protect one’s child runs even more fiercely than the desire to protect one’s freedom.

And although Kristine Kathryn Rusch has no children of her own, she has a remarkable ability to tap into a mother’s instincts and a mother’s love, as is evidenced in her writing.

And so I leave you this holiday with a strong suggestion: Read Kris’ “Patriotic Gestures,” which is free for one week on her website starting today.

It is a story about a mother’s love, freedom, patriotism, and the cost exacted by each.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.