The Lead-Up to ‘Welcome Home’

If you’ve had a loved one deployed, then you probably know that the first and last weeks of deployment usually feel the longest. There’s so much to do, and the days drag by slowly. To help you out, I’ve compiled a list of must-dos during that last painful week. You’re welcome in advance!

Here’s what to do in the lead-up to “welcome home”:

  1. Shave your legs. 
  2. Get your nails done.
  3. Let the kids know he’s coming. 
  4. Tell your homecoming photographer the time. 
  5. Cancel all plans and activities for homecoming day and a few days following.
  6. Clean the house. 
  7. Feel like you’re actually on top of it for once. 
  8. Do the math. Just three more nights alone. You’ve got this.
  9. Husband calls.
  10. What do you mean flight A is now coming home several days after B?
  11. What do you mean that you are on flight A?
  12. Why even have letters?
  13. How do we even win wars? 
  14. Why does the Air Force hate you? 
  15. Scream into the void.
  16. Cry.
  17. Get wine. 
  18. Add days to countdown. 
  19. Forget it. Throw the countdown away.  Time is a construct.
  20. Weeks now have 12 days, kiddos. Buckle up! 
  21. Consider reshaving. Nope. Never a good idea to shave in a rage.
  22. All your nails are chipped. Cease to care.
  23. Consider recleaning. But also consider just burning it all down and starting fresh. Like an extreme Marie Kondo. None of this sparks joy. None of it.
  24. Do neither. Remember that wine? 
  25. Your homecoming photographer will be out of town on the new date.
  26. Purchase a selfie stick. 
  27. Try to keep busy. 
  28. Ha ha! You can’t you clear your calendar! 
  29. Chic-Fil-A play area it is. 
  30. Stop doing the math. Math is dumb, and you’ll be alone forever. It’s fine. 
  31. Turn off phone. Forever. You’re a hermit now. Also fine.
  32. Cereal is life. 
  33. Plane lands. 
  34. Maybe it’s actually happening, and you should put on a bra now. At least brush the kids’ hair…
  35. Ceremony is full of people. Maybe it’s all an elaborate ruse. 
  36. Doors open. 
  37. Heart stops. 
  38. Five-hour long ceremony. Watch says ten minutes, but you know better.
  39. He finds you in the crowd. Your world is right.
  40. Maybe this week wasn’t so bad after all 

Well, there you have it. Your list might not look exactly like mine. Every deployment is different. But the common thread is: Expect things to change, for time to slow, and that the first kiss will make it all worth it!


About Emma Tighe

Emma Tighe is a former Army brat and a current Army wife recently stationed at Fort Hood, TX. She has a B.A. in music and a passion for writing. She is married to her favorite cavalryman, Korey, and is a homeschooling mother of four crazy kiddos. When she is not blogging, giving music lessons, or homeschooling; she can be found hiding in the pantry eating chocolate and watching reality tv on her phone. She has a great love for our military and believes that spouses are best empowered through information, knowledge, and support.

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