August 09
C gets back on the plane..and goes back to Iraq for another 3 months. Snap back to my day to day life. I kept busy and focused on Gracie and what my next steps were. Makeup school was calling my name, but I wasn’t ready. I decided I would go in January. C and I would date and have a long distance relationship. So, I applied and started to plan it all out. Yea…well..about that..

November 09
Well, it was here. C is coming home! Mom, Gracie and I pack up and head to Ft. Campbell. As soon as we got there I met with one of the army wives, Jessica and her beautiful new baby Kylie for lunch. Gracie just had her 2nd birthday, she felt like such a big girl compared to little Kylie. Her husband and C are on the same team and pretty close. So it was a great feeling to know we got along. She helped me with all the ins and outs of everything a spouse needed to know. Since I was only an ‘army girlfriend’ I didn’t get that privilege. Thank God she was there.

We made signs and had our cameras charged and ready. The kids were with their grandmas and we headed to base. It was a cold, damp, foggy morning. I was wearing my ONE heavy coat I actually had, you could tell I was a true Floridian. I did not get one ounce of sleep I was so on the edge. At 4am we’re on our way. I remember driving there having an overwhelming feeling the day I did when I got on the plane to first meet him 3 months ago. Pure bliss and excitement.

We get on the bus, drive to the hanger and I meet everyone. Everyone as in the other army wives of our whole company. Here it was, the reality of true military life. Hearing their stories, their lives, how they met their husbands, how they coped over this year, was genuinely making me feel like what the hell do I say? Here I was in the beginning of my story, our story. I just listened. However, when Jessica mentioned C, everyone knew exactly who I was. Apparently C had told everyone. I was the focus of peoples interest for about 2.5 seconds. Hey, at least I didn’t feel completely out of the loop.

We hear over the loud speakers that they are 20 mins out. 20 mins! Jessica and I, along with all the other families pile into the cold misty weather outside. Finding a perfect spot on the fence right upfront was not that easy, but we got pretty close. The plane came in and it circled about 3 times before actually stopping. The size of the plane was ginormous to say the least. The soldiers came out one after the other after the other. There was no way to spot him even with our massive signs.

We head back into the hanger and grab our seats. We literally have to sit and listen to a 15 minute speech before finding our loved ones. Crazy. The hopeful, desperate faces amongst the crowd. It was like watching a pack of wolves search for their prey. We reach the end and everyone is running around berserk. In the mess and craziness of it all, it was like a movie when the array of people parted. I saw him, he saw me. Cue the music. We ran into each other like the very first time. Here you are in my arms..again.

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