it was not! I guess I was lulled by last year’s homecoming, but this year’s was much harder. I think last year was really easy…pretty smooth except for half of one day (sadly, it was Tj’s birthday!).
We planned well, but things never go as planned, do they? Tj really thought he was coming home on Saturday (the 17th), so he planned for us to drive to Branson (about 3.5 hours away) the following Thursday. Shortly before then they changed his return to Tuesday and said we should be at the base by 6:30am. Tj planned to inprocess that day, so we’d have all day Wednesday, and leave Thursday. It was tight, but doable. When it came down to it, he arrived Tuesday night at 9pm. We got home around 11pm. Tj got up early the next morning and went to work, but came home in time to have lunch with Max and me while Jack was at therapy. Thursday morning we packed and left for Branson at noon. So, that part of the homecoming was really tight, and then Tj hadn’t slept in a bed for 50-something hours before that, and had been halfway around the world when he did…he was super jet-lagged! I kept reminding myself of that every time we had a tiff, but it started to get old. I was also reminding myself that he hadn’t lived with a woman for 5 months (he was gone 9 days short of 5 months), hadn’t lived with kids, etc etc etc.
So, we had a pretty uneventful drive and found the hotel. We unpacked and called for a pizza. As soon as the delivery guy rang the doorbell Max started crying about his ear! In his six years every time he’s cried (I’d say 4 or so times) he’s had an ear infection. Tj was pretty put out, but left without eating and went to Walgreens to buy ear drops and Tylenol. He asked why we were traveling w/o children’s tylenol, but I’ve never brought it on a trip before unless the kids were using it at the time we started a trip…I’d just never thought of it! I guess I’ll put it on the list from now on! :-)
After doping Max up, eating, and settling in Max slept all night. We spent the next day at Silver Dollar City. We didn’t bring in a stroller or a sippy cup…Jack is really growing up! He walked almost the whole time, and we all took our time and enjoyed being together. We probably got there around 10 and left around 4pm. In the middle of the night that night Jack woke up with a croupy cough. Tj took him into the steamy bathroom. After 10 mins or so he stuck his head out to see if that was enough and the fire alarm went off because of all the steam! We all went back to sleep after that. Another day at SDC, then Max threw a biiiiiiiiiig fit that night about his ear again. He hadn’t said another word about his ear for two days and a night…and then screaming. Tj gave him a spanking after I couldn’t calm him down. It’s rough having a sick kid in a motel! The next morning I took him to an urgent care and they said his ear was infected. He started antibiotics and hasn’t complained about it since.
For the rest of the nights in that hotel the boys and I slept fine, but Tj started getting sick and didn’t sleep well. Between the sickness and the jet lag it was a really rough homecoming, but by the time we drove back home we had it all pretty much worked out. I’m so glad to have him home!