8.21.2011

Homecoming..... 4 1/2 months late

We all know how incredible deployment homecomings are.

Prepping the house, deep cleaning, and grocery shopping are ALL incredibly tiring and stressful. Getting your hair done, manicures, pedicures, spray tans, waxes.... the work up of damage control that deployment has taken on your body is incredibly expensive. The sleepless nights and weeks due to nerves and waiting to get that quickie 2 minute phone call saying they are FINALLY out of Afghanistan are incredibly exhausting. Constantly calling the deployment update hotline and praying the dates and times haven't been pushed back but then hearing that they have been for the 6th time is incredibly disheartening. Waiting up all night, counting the hours of each flight as they make their way from Afghanistan to Germany to Maine to finally hearing the last flight is bringing them home... is incredibly exciting/nerve wracking/emotional.

We all cope with those last several weeks in different ways. Since this was our very first deployment and I was no longer back in Arizona, in my family's very civilian world, I was sort of at a loss of how everything would unfold here in Georgia alone. When I moved back here in February to go house hunting and settle back in, I met a wonderful beautiful Milie named Sammy. She is seriously the best and the reason I didn't go absolutely crazy. 


Her husband is a maintainer like Mr. Superman although he is AMXS while Mr. Superman is EMS and those two jobs are "rivals/enemies/nemesis". Through a weird series of events, we found out that not only did our husbands attend and graduate from BMT at the same time, they were Brother Flights! They then were at Tech School at the same time and both got stationed here at Moody. Her husband was coming home the same day as my loverface so we ended up spending the last 3 weeks waiting for them to get home, helping each other unpack, clean, decorate, and stay sane through the long nights.

The long awaited day came and we stayed up all night and watched movie after movie, screaming with excitement each time our phones rang, hung up my homecoming banner (I swallowed a nail while hanging up the banner. We're going to leave it at that. No really, leave it), and then primped and curled more than either of us had in 7 months. 0530 rolled around and we headed off to base.

We waited and we waited and we WAITED. Then we waited some more. Of course the wrapping up of a deployment wouldn't be complete without a few uh.... upsets?

After a couple hours, we got word they were finally opening the hangar. Then we heard the plane was there. Then they told us it was going to be a while. The plane had to circle above the flightline for almost an hour waiting for clearance to land even though the flight had been scheduled FOREVER. Ridiculous.

 

We then finally got word that the plane was landing. We all jumped up clapping, laughing, crying and then had to wait for the plane to taxi to the other end of base for them all to get on the bus.


We waited and we waited and we WAITED. Then we waited some more.


We finally got word that the stair truck, you know the truck with the stairs that makes it possible for them to GET OFF THE PLANE was broken. Broken. Lamesauce. I casually threw out the idea to the commander that they just inflate the emergency exit slide but it was a no-go. Not because she didn't agree but because the plane was still half full of soldier's heading to their very own homecoming's at Fort Hood. Guess what we did then?

We waited and we waited and we WAITED. Then we waited some more.

 
 

Eventually, we saw two white buses coming across the flightline. We all scrambled up crying and our heads our going back and forth between the two white buses because we had no idea which bus each of our respective loved ones happened to be on. The flood of camo began and it was a free for all. Sammy saw her husband and TOOK OFF running and about 5 seconds later, I saw Mr. Superman.

My incredible, brave, strong, handsome, loving husband was FINALLY safe! I was pretty much all up on him like white on rice and between my long hair and my great tan, he didn't recognize me for a minute.
"I totally didn't recognize you. You're so tan!" Nice right? 

Afterwards, it took a bit for it to sink in that he was at his home base, on US soil, and able to finally leave at will. I kept telling him to get his bags so we could leave and he looked confused and was like, "I can leave? Are you sure?" I assured him he could in fact leave. We said our "Goodbyes", "Welcome Home's", and gave hugs to a few people and I brought my man to our new house!
Yes, we all know deployment homecoming's are incredible and despite all the date changes, disappointments, stresses, expenses, sleepless nights, and Murphy's best attempts at throwing us Milie's off our game's, the incredible's I remember aren't the negative one's.

Incredibly rewarding.
Incredibly strength building.
Incredibly revealing.
Incredibly butterfly inducing.

in·cred·i·ble

1: too extraordinary and improbable to be believed
2: amazing, extraordinary
  

And you know what Lovelies? Its all so fitting, these incredible things that accompanied the celebration of my husband returning home safe and sound because he is the most incredible human being I know. I'm so lucky to have him to love. 

14 comments:

Jessica said...

Awesome post! I am so glad he is home with you.

annoyed army wife said...

Better late than never! Great photos!

Team Mama said...

And then he called me and since I DIDN'T know he was coming home yet, I screamed and then cried and cried and I heard you say in the background "told ya!" which was kind of a no brainer because as it has been pointed out, I cry at everything but especially my only son's return from Afghanistan and it was totally wonderful!!! And I am SOOOO glad he is home and back with you!

chambanachik said...

Congrats. :)

Sasha said...

so sweet. Love all the pictures and hearing about everything

JG said...

So happy for you!! Love seeing the two of you together! And on a more minor note, I love your new layout!

Jen said...

Sooo wonderful!!! :)

B. said...

I love this story, but I especially love you finding Sammie. I lucked up and met a millie while my husband was in BMT. Just so happens her husband was in the same flight as mine. I wouldn't have made it through those 8.5 without her. I love Millies and I'm glad superman is home!!

Allie said...

I love homecoming posts! Congrats on having him home (:

Stephanie said...

This made me cry. I'm so touched by how you described his homecoming...you filled this post with humour, but it's still so obvious how awful it must have been to wait, wait, wait. Thanks so much for sharing!

Steph said...

Oh wow! I'm not very good at waiting like that.

Glad to see you are back in the bloggy world.

Melissa Jaine said...

Loved reading this!
Melissa
x

Carmen said...

That's such a great homecoming story! I'm so glad you posted this! I loved reading this. Your love for each other is unique and wonderful :)

The Captain's Daughter said...

With tears of joy in my eyes for you I say...

WAIT should be stated as the NORMAL condition of the military on every enlistment contract - It is truly the military's middle name!!! If I had just a penny for every minute we waited for our Ranger to be released, I'd be a trillionaire!