Saturday, December 5, 2009

Slacker/Homecoming story

I know, I know, I know. No updates for over a month. Here comes the list of excuses. 1) I honestly haven't done anything crafty in a this past month, other than just playing with some fabric. 2) School is coming to an end for this semester, so of course in the professor's minds, it's precisely the time to give us about 14 homework assignments and projects each night.

In other news, the boy is home safe and sound from deployment number two. He came home at exactly 6 months from the day he left, a month early! It was not expected at all. Last time I blogged, I know I said I was anticipating him coming home early, but that changed just a day or so later, and he wasn't coming home early anymore. In fact he wasn't due home until today, give or take a few days. His mom called me on Monday (Nov. 9) and told me she had just gotten off the phone with the FRO (family readiness officer- basically the person who keeps the family updated on what's going on, what they're doing, and homecoming and the like). I was just like "okay" not expecting much, but then she asked me if I was sitting down. I was driving, so I mean, technically, I was. Then she told me that he was coming home THAT Friday. I just about lost it. Tears ran down my face and everything.

A few work days and a horrible rainy drive (including a ticket!), I found myself in North Carolina. He began to rent an apartment while he was gone (for when he came home) and when his parents and brother got in, they found the apartment in pretty good shape, except there was no electricity. We all stayed in a hotel that night, and then the next morning (when he was supposed to be back) we went to his apartment. I have to say, it was a little odd sitting in his bedroom, with everything there but him.

As I said before, he was supposed to be home Friday (Nov. 13). While I was driving down, he texted me (from his computer) saying that they were stuck in Spain because of the bad weather. It was only supposed to be until 2 or so the next day (Friday), so I figured it wasn't too bad, at least he'd still be home that same day. But then, in the morning we got a call from the FRO saying that now a part on the plane was broken and it could take a few days since they had to get it shipped from the US to Spain. A FEW DAYS?! The thought just about killed me. After that call, we were expecting Monday at the earliest for his homecoming. We went about the day, going to a few different places and trying to figure out if his dad and brother were going to stay or not.

The next morning (Saturday, the 14th), at about 7am, I was beginning to wake up (of course I was considering going back to sleep) when my phone rang. It was his mom calling from the other room letting me know about another call from the FRO. All I could think of was "what now?" But then, his mom told me that the FRO was calling to let us know the plane was landing in Virgina (about 3 hours away from where we were). I sat up right away, now completely awake. Next thing I knew, the boy was calling me and telling me that they had just landed, but they had to wait for the bus now. I got up and got ready, fully expecting them to be home in a few hours. As the day went by, and the bus still wasn't there (for whatever reason, they waited until their plane landed to call for a bus. Then the bus had to leave from North Carolina and then go to Virginia to get them), we went out to lunch with Matt's friends (another Marine and his wife) and then went to their house for a bit. Then it was time for a nap.

After the nap we all got ready once again (it was about 7pm). We were getting texts from the boy, updating us on where he was. His mom was taking a bit longer to get ready, and then all of a sudden she said he was really close so we all rushed out to the cars. We took two, including his since we would have to fit 5 people and all his gear. His brother and I were following his parents in his car, and his mom got lost on the way to base. Talk about getting nervous. I knew he was so close and so were we. When we found our way finally and got on base, we then had to get base passes. That took longer than expected. Then we had to find where everyone was meeting and waiting for the buses. We drove past it once, not seeing it, then finally pulled in with the buses basically right behind us.

His poor brother was trying to find a place to park and I shouted "THERE'S THE BUSES! LET ME OUT!" I left everything but my camera in the car and even opened the door while the car was still moving. I ran up to the buses and started taking pictures and trying to see if he was on the one I was next to. His mom spotted him first (she ran up to the bus, and looked up into the window, I only saw everyone from the neck down from where I was standing). Unlike last time, they weren't in their uniforms and there was no formation, so as soon as they got off the bus they were able to go right to their families. His mom hugged him first and then it was my turn. Talk about amazing! I truly believe that unless you go through a deployment and then a homecoming you can never imagine what it feels like. It's like a first kiss all over again. It's just...amazing. He's been home for almost a month (with the majority of it in North Carolina, but on US soil none the less). He'll be home-home in just about 2 weeks for two weeks of post-deployment leave (which means he'll be home for Christmas and New Years!) The timing is great as I will just be finishing up with school and finally only have work to worry about!

Well the dogs are calling my name, they want to go out and play in the first snow of the year!