Ten years ago yesterday, my husband came home from Iraq on leave. I remember not sleeping very well the night before.
He called about 8:30 from Atlanta. The next plane to Lexington was leaving around 9. I finally figured out what I was going to wear, cussed like a sailor while I got my hair pulled back and told the cats I would be back in a while with their daddy.
I had a copy of his orders and my military ID. With those documents, I was allowed to go up the stairs and wait at the arrival gate. Two planes landed. Neither was his. I saw a third airplane and thought this has to be the one.
I waited and waited and finally I saw this very tan, tall drink of water in desert cammies. I tried to smile but the closer he got, the more I needed to cry. When he hugged me and said hello, Sam, I started bawling. There we stood in the middle of Bluegrass Airport, me bawling in Paul's arms,with him saying I'm here. I'm here. Hold on. I'm here. That made me cry harder, so he said Your dress is so pretty! And your hair. I'm here. Hold onto me. We finally made it out of there.
I reluctantly surrendered him back to the Army on August 2.
I firmly believe the stress of the fifteen months from when I left him in Kingsbury, Indiana next stop Iraq to when he came home to my arms on November 10, 2005, on a tarmac in Wisconsin, kick started whatever genetic tendency I have toward PsA.
All that being said, I continue to rejoice that he's home, mostly healthy, and RETIRED since 2011.
One picture is of him ten years ago. The second was taken this past April. He grew the beard as a retirement present to himself.65-Colburnsmemorial10years.jpg (88.7 KB) 66-anotherbuckwheatiniraq.jpg (63.9 KB)