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Preparing for the end of deployment with a tinge of sadness

Finally this deployment is coming to an end! I can’t even begin to describe how excited I am. My kids and I have missed my husband tremendously. Honestly though, I also feel a touch of sadness about the end of deployment.

Reunion at the end of deployment

I’m not kidding in the least when I tell you that every week since my husband has been gone, there has been some major obstacle for me to struggle though. However through the struggles there have been a lot of very precious moments that I wouldn’t trade for the world.

A little bit of sadness

I have to admit, I’ll be a little sad when deployment is over. For eight months I have had my kids all to myself, and not had to watch them ditch me the second their daddy came walking in the door after work on a daily basis. I have soaked up every cuddly moment, every day full of hugs and kisses and even some great one-on-one bedtime chats with my son. Not to mention many stories, pictures drawn and love notes. I know that will soon end.

I’m fairly confident my girls — who’ve just turned 3 and are still very much in that ‘in the moment’ stage — won’t completely give me up. But it’s a safe bet that my son will go right back to being the 100 percent daddy’s boy he was before his dad left on deployment. In truth? I’m OK with that. I absolutely love that my son is so captivated by his father and hero. But I can’t help but feel a slight selfish sting as I feel the days narrowing down and the chatter of daddy coming home — and all the fun things my son has planned to do with him — increasing.

But how can I not get just as completely wrapped up in the excitement as my son is? Finally my husband, lover, best friend and awesome parenting partner is coming home. And we are all getting very excited and doing little things to get ready.

The preparation

The kids each have a special task of their own — to show their daddy something new they’ve done or learned while he’s been away. Laura Crawford's kids doing puzzlesWhen I asked my twin girls what they wanted to show daddy when he came home, “Puzzles!” was the extremely enthusiastic response I got in stereo. So we’ve been practicing and perfecting a couple of their favorites over the past week.

My son has built a couple of LEGO creations that he refuses to take apart just so he can show his dad what he has made all from his own imagination, and already has those sitting on my dresser prepped for display. He also has a box where we have stored all of the school work he’s done and brought home this year. Of course my husband will go through the entire box eventually, but my son and I have gone ahead and picked out a few of his favorite projects that he’ll be able to show his daddy right away.

I’m doing what I think most of us wives do. I’m trying to get — and keep — the house tidied up. I want to see if a hair appointment can get squeezed in there somewhere, so I can feel a bit more womanly again. If I’m really lucky, I’ll even snag myself a pedicure.

Honestly though, the biggest and most monumental prep work I’m doing for myself is soaking in every last bit of this special one-on-one, mommy-only time with my babies. Don’t get me wrong, I will be so grateful to have my husband home again. But I will always treasure the special moments I’ve had with my children over the last few months.

More about military families

Our magical door to communication during deployment
One event at a time: Countdown to the end of deployment
The importance of routine after deployment

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