Monday, August 20, 2007

Back to Our Regularly Scheduled Program

Yes, so we said our goodbyes, last night. It will be a year before he returns home, this time. Tough, it was tough.

But it was oh-so-good to have Brian home for 20 days, and see that he's ok. He is really ok.

Funny to have him home for some time, after adjusting, for the last year or so, to a life alone, a new empty-nesting normal. I'm comfortable in my home, have plenty of friends and family, and, as you know, plenty of extracurricular activities filling out my life. I'm doing ok. Everything is generally in place.

Until my kid comes home.

And the bathroom smells like aftershave again,

And I'm stopping at the grocery store every night after work

And I'm cooking dinner for 6 most evenings

And his friends, my other sons, come over and walk right into the house without knocking, and crash on my living room floor

And bacon is a staple in my house again

And I squawk at them to pick their cigarette butts up off my driveway, and throw their Gatorade bottles away

And Brian, vowing to give me a heart attack before he leaves, offhandedly mentions things such as "Well, Mom, you're going to be a Grandma." (He was kidding.) (I think.)

And my toiletries mysteriously end up in the second bathroom

And there is WAY more farting going on in this house. And in the car.

And the kid pokes me in the ribs making me jump 3 feet in the air, to the amusement of his friends

And sometimes we bicker, and get on one another's nerves

And I have to move t-shirts, boxer shorts, and socks out of the dryer before I can dry my own clothes

And I can actually hit the 2-button on my cell phone, and a phone will ring, and Brian can pick up!

And impromptu dinners can be arranged

And he can grab a bag of ice for me, on the way home

And I still lecture that kid, and his friends, if they need it

And I have laughed my butt off for 20 days.

And my current, empty-nesting life seems foreign and empty to me, once again. This, this is what I'm comfortable with. I feel normal again, doing the Mom-thang for 1 + more. I'm back in my own skin.

Alas, I know that having a houseful of crazy kids on a near-daily basis isn't my life anymore. They are now 21, 22 years old. I know I'd kick their skinny butts out of my house and tell them "Hey! Go buy your own bacon!"

But God, I love them. And I already miss them all like crazies.


  1. Angela Reinhart11:00 AM

    My 6 year old son Logan talked about Brian last night after we left Jeff and Michelle's house - after eating spaghetii - ha!

    He asked me what a war was, where it was, if we were safe, and why we had to be in a war. All tough questions to answer - but I tried to stay on his level.

    When we got home, my husband unloaded some things that Jeff had put in the back of our truck and had used two Beanie Babies to level or hold in place - I'm not sure. But our boys grabbed them and Logan said they were from Brian - so they were instantly special!

    Logan took his Beanie Baby to school this morning and as I left the room he was telling one of his friends about his cousin Brian and how he is a soldier and that we shouldn't be scared because Brian is protecting us.

    Sending you thoughts and prayers right now!

    Love - Angela

  2. Gah. This post just choked me all up. I have something in my eye.
    'Scuse me.

    Wishing you, Brian and the gang all the best.

  3. Your post made me laugh. Angela's comment made me cry.

    This year will fly by, and Brian will be home, and life will go on.

    But how do you tell a six-year-old clutching a stuffed animal why we have to be in a war, especially when you know that he'll probably have to be in one himself someday?

    Sometimes I feel hopeless.

  4. This was a great, fun post about the 20 days with Brian home. I hope the next year is the fastest year in your life.

    I tagged you in my post today.

    Brian is in my daily prayer =)

  5. I admit - it all makes me cry. I am grateful, just the same, that you are willing to share the ups and downs with me (well, with all of us)....

  6. I can't imagine how people deal with this . . . a child you bore out of your own body . . . and you so evoke the difficulty of bouncing between having him there, and not. It's a transition of enormous proportions, and you're doing great. Hang in there.

  7. You're a tough cookie and you know it. Sooner than you can imagine, he'll be home. I am always amazed at the incredible amount of good that you are doing in the world. If you need anything, there are tons of folks you can call on ...

    I was glad I could meet Brian while he was home and I'm very proud to say I know you guys.

  8. You home sounds like my grandmothers place. It always smelled of food and was full of friends and family. Even after my uncle died his friends came to see my grandparents until the end of their lives. It's these types of places that we need more than ever right now. It's sanctuary from the crazy world we live in.

    You amaze me daily. I'm glad to know that people like you still exist.

  9. heart just whimpered a bit...lots of hugs and prayers...and wonderful wonderful vibes...

  10. Gulp, I'm at a loss for words. I guess Brian is kind and thoughtful because he takes after his Mom. I know he just like you because of his comment: "Well, Mom, you're going to be a Grandma." What a kidder... right?

  11. Now, my empty nest feels so...empty. I had forgotten about all that stuff.


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