During a deployment there is a time that is more sacred then any other during the year. It is referred to as R+R. 14 days that a soldier is given to take time off doing what ever legal thing they feel like doing. Airfare is on the Army and they get a ticket to fly!
My handsome Man got that golden ticket and lucky for me he booked that flight, straight to my arms!
The first embrace and kiss when you see each other is true magic. For me the whole world melts away and his face is all I see. It reminds me of the day I became his wife. Like standing in the center of a tornado.
As soon as we entered that state of bliss our sweet kids ripped us back to reality.. Our 3 stooges each took their turn. Larry ran and jumped into her Daddy's arms, Moe reached as high as she could squeezing his left knee cap. Curly without skipping a beat crossed her tiny arms and said "All I have to say is, Mama wont let me have any lollipops"!
The first few days we floated on air. All of us so eager to show off what we have been up to for the last 5 months. The girls had certificates they earned at school and I may have torn a few holes in the walls of our new house.
We threw a party for my birthday and had some of our best friends come and laugh with us! My sister graced us with her wonderful company and made a punch called Knock-ya-Naked!
Every day for us was like a dance. Our kids twirled from one of us to the other. Every now and then we come around a corner in the house and "bump" our lips together.
By mid leave we caught the kids trying to play us against each other. The chores divided and everyday things like bedtime at 8 did not seem so important.
I got to sleep in..... multiple times. We stayed up later and later watching trash tv and laughing till we knew we must be delirious.
I fell in love with him... again.
Family came to stay and it felt like any other vacation.
As the time drew to an end it became clear that we had been granted not 15 days but 17. I did not want to say it out loud for fear that some one would figure it out and come knock on the door in the middle of the night to take him away. But they didn't.
What did happen was a little different. Mr LbF got a wake up call to what it is really like to be a wife of a deployed soldier.
By day 14 the rose colored glasses fell off. It started with the dishwasher, which died. Then the kitchen filled with ants, so that battle began. His truck would not start. Curly got the 24 hour flu which triggered the endless pile of nasty laundry. Moe woke up every hour through the night crying. The next day our fence practically blew over and our neighbor came knocking on the door saying that our dogs where running the neighborhood.
His last night we reviewed his final days at home. We laughed and I may have cried. I explained how typical all this was for a military wife to go through and asked what he had to say after going through it with. My not so complicated man replied "This is some bull".
I have heard some wives say that a deployment might be easier without getting R+R. They say, that good-bye for a 2nd time is just to hard. Not in our case. For me the good-byes are just the few steps that happen before the tornados!