Although I’ve known for a while that Brooks was coming home in December, I’ll admit, I’ve been a bit of a skeptic. I”m pretty used to the delays and the inevitable changes that can occur in the military. So even with Brooks coming home quite soon, it really hadn’t hit me. But today, today, in the midst of my psych paper writing marathon, it hit me… Brooks is coming home. Soon. And I’ve done nothing to prepare.

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There is something comforting about homecoming preparations. At least for me. These preparations don’t induce me into a panic, quite the opposite: they calm me with their necessary time consuming busyness. My list isn’t crazy extensive. It’s long enough to keep me focused on the day to day and not that arbitrary date somewhere in the distance that’s bound to change. And when one is so close to homecoming the hours seem to slowly drag by, so busyness is crazy important.

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The Boy and I will have our hands busy this week. We have Christmas activities and events to attend, friend’s gatherings, homeschool, finals, and of course, homecoming preparations. We have a banner to make, streamers to hang, items to purchase, cars to vaccuum, dogs to groom, and meals to plan. I’ve already planned our first dinner, and am planning on making a soup with fresh rolls for lunch. I have no idea what time Brooks will be home, but I’ll have dinner ready to go into the oven and soup pre-made. I don’t plan on being in the kitchen that first day longer than it takes me to pop food into the oven or to load the dishes into the dishwasher.

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Folding clothes today I found myself crying big crocodile tears. Deployments aren’t easy, no matter how well one copes or how much support, love, and understanding one receives. On the long list of things to get done each day I typically come last. Pretty nearly always. Sometimes I don’t give myself the time to work through whatever I’m feeling and those feelings can get bottled up inside. Quite honestly, sometimes holding back is better than losing it completely, because my boys depend on me. So my tears today were tears of the finality, soon, of getting through a another deployment. Of excitement and joy without measure, of tears never shed.

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I remain ever so grateful that Brooks will be with us for Christmas.

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