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Troops in Iraq are coming home!

I am so excited!! This deployment that was supposed to last until May, will be over soon! According to the President, the troops that are in Iraq will be home by the end of the year.  Obama even said they “will definitely be home for the holidays”.  Of course, I don’t know if he means Christmas or the New Year, but either way his promise means nothing to me until my husband is sitting next to me on our loveseat in our living room.  I know that it’s the Army, and things can always change, but even if they don’t make it before the holidays…

MY HUSBAND IS COMING HOME!!

There is a lot of preparation going on.  The troops are getting instructions on reintegrating back with their families.  Some like to say it’s the “what to do (or not do) if you go home and your wife has spent all your money” talk.  It’s sad that those type of talks are even necessary, but unfortunately they are.

The FRG has also been getting things ready for the single soldiers’ barracks – collecting bedding, toiletries and snacks, so they can come home to a room that isn’t just cold and empty.  One thing I never realized before we started this deployment and Hubby explained it to me is that the single soldiers have to move out of the barracks before they deploy.  All of their belongings are put into storage until they return.  That means that when they get back, they are assigned a room, but they don’t have any of their things until they get to their storage.  We don’t want them to come home like that, so we are making sure they have sheets, a blanket, pillow, snacks and basic toiletries in their rooms.  It’s the least we can do!

Then there are the welcome home signs to make, the outfits to plan, and the food to cook.  Hubby is looking forward to my meatloaf and mashed potatoes so I’ve assured him I will have the supplies on hand, or it already made when he gets home.

We as spouses have even had meetings on what to expect when our soldier returns.  We’ve been instructed to make sure we are communicating with our spouse about our expectations – with the kids, with chores, and with intimacy.  As one experienced wife put it, we need to know whether he is expecting things to be like a microwave or a crock-pot that first night. I thought that was a great analogy!

Thankfully, Hubby and I have been doing a lot of communicating.  It’s something we’ve always been pretty good at, so we’ve been asking each other questions about expectations and sharing with each other what we are looking forward to.  We need to be on the same page so that unmet (and unspoken) expectations don’t cause friction, and I think we are right there together!  Such a great feeling!

It’s funny because when I thought he was coming home in May, I had myself all prepared for that we were in a routine so it didn’t bother me.  Now that I know they are coming home, it just can’t get here fast enough!  It’s harder knowing it’s so close, but still so far.

For operational security reasons, I won’t be giving any specifics on here as to his return even once I know something (which I don’t yet!).  All I can tell you is what the media has already released, like I mentioned above.  Don’t worry though, I will let you know as soon as I can once his boots are on the ground here at home!

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