Homecoming is right around the corner for us. I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t scared shitless, because I am. I have no clue what to expect from my husband. He has seemed to be “normal” for most of this deployment, but the last few times I’ve talked with him, something changed. He’s not the same guy that I remembered. I could almost hear something that sounded like defeat in his voice.
He’s also started being a bit insensitive. It hasn’t seemed as though he was taking my feelings into consideration. I understand that he’s got a lot on his mind, but he does still have a family back home, and a wife that would like to hear that he still loves her once in a while. There are days when it gets very hard to keep my frustration in check. Those are the days when he is very lucky that I can’t call him, and give him a piece of that frustration.
This is our first deployment. I find myself often with my arms outstretched, palms facing upward. Hoping for an idea of what I should be thinking, and feeling, to come to me. There are days when I think I know what’s going on, but lately those days have been few and far between. For a time, I was going through the motions: feed the children, feed the dogs, clean up after the children, clean up after the dogs, bathe the children, bathe the dogs. Day in and day out, until suddenly I realized that it was already July.
An unexpected shake up finds me expecting my husband home a couple weeks early. There are parts of me that are ecstatic to see him, and others that would rather I had that time back to prepare. Or even longer. I feel guilty for not being completely over the moon to see him, but everyone keeps telling me that he’s going to come back a changed man. Will it be good, or bad? And if he does change for the better, will it stick?
What about the kids? The children are now 2 and 3, they know that Daddy has been at work for a very long time. He’s been off helping the good people, and fighting the bad guys. I have finally told them that Daddy will be home soon, and that we need to get ready for it. But, how do you get toddlers ready for homecoming? Is the youngest going to remember him? Or run screaming for the hills when this stranger in cammies comes at her and asks for a hug?
And the dogs, oh the dogs! Anyone that’s been to my house, knows how my fur-children react to strangers. They have been Momma’s girls for the last six months, who is this guy suddenly trying to discipline them and telling them when and where to poo? I think that will be a very loud reunion.
On the flip side, what if they all completely take to my husband’s return? I have been caring for all of them for so long, I’m not sure I’m ready to give up the crown just yet. I like being the ultimate force in the house. Now I have to share that power? I don’t know how I feel about that.
Don’t get me wrong, there are things that I’m looking forward to. I miss having someone come home to me everyday. I can’t wait to share disciplining-that is tiring after a while. We have some very headstrong princesses in our kingdom. I am so looking forward to having someone to pick up the dog poo. And of course the intimacy, he he he, the intimacy.
This is a very scary place to be right now. Do the positive and negative possibilities cancel each other out? Will everyone behave? Will the flights land on time, and will everything run smoothly so that I’ll get him back when planned? Did he actually shave off the Afghanistache?
My husband and I have never been apart for this long. Very soon we’ll know if we were successes, or otherwise. He’ll see all the things I changed in the house. All the events that were held in our home. He’ll see the ghetto dog kennel that was erected in our backyard. And hopefully, he’ll see just how much we missed having him home with us.