Tuesday, June 24, 2008

WHERE DOES THE TIME GO?

It's hard to believe that almost three weeks have passed since we were in Washington State to welcome home the 4th brigade.
Where does the time go.

We were home for a couple of days when we heard from Matt.
He's having a bit of a tough time reintegrating.
It seems strange that the Army would bring these men home from working seven days a week, sometimes going 36 or more hours without sleep, and put them on half days..
How does one slow down like that?
They have one more week, then they go on block leave.
Matt will be home for the month of July.
I understand that they don't want to put combat infantryman out on the street without having a chance to evaluate their state of mind.
But I think they could find things for them to do to keep busy up until they get to go on leave.

As far as the parent side of the equation.
The first emotion when they arrived at Ft. Lewis was jubilation.
Not really relief, because you can't be sure that the son who is coming home is the same person that left.
There is no telling what horrors he's been subjected to, and what effect that might have on him.
And don't expect him to tell you everything that happened, or that he saw.
Most won't talk about it.
Probably feeling first that you shouldn't know, and second that you won't understand.
I guess all we can do is to be there to listen when they want to talk, and not pry.
I have told Matt that he did what he was sent to do, and survived to come home.
Don't take the weight of it on his shoulders.
It isn't his fault.
He didn't start the war.
People die in wars.
That's just what happens.
Be glad you survived, and get on with your life.

Parents need to understand that once the jubilation of having your loved one home wears off, the stress and anxiety doesn't magically go away.

Only time will heal the mental wounds that we suffer from the constant worry while they are deployed.

Let's not forget that there are still young men and women in harms way.
Keep them in you thoughts and prayers.

8 comments:

  1. Glad your son made it home safely...my best to all of you.

    I found you through One Percenters' blog. I have linked to your site and plan to visit again. Take care and give your boy a welcome home hug from me..... :)

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  2. 'Dad, glad to see you back on the blog. Was getting a little worried you might have actually choked that guy that came into your office the first day back at work.

    Jacob, was home for two weeks and then back to Fort Bragg. Wish I had some good advice for you but not much parents can do save listen when they want to talk. Like you say time is the key to healing.

    Like Sean Connery said in the "Untouchables" Matt has learned the first rule of war, Go home at the end of your shift.

    He did and after time has passed he will be proud of what he and the others have accomplished.

    Take care

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  3. Not really relief, because you can't be sure that the son who is coming home is the same person that left.
    Cool Advice

    When my uncle came back from Viet Nam he wasn't exactly the same/sane person. My mom told me not to ask him anything.

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  4. Kbug,
    Welcome.
    thank you for the kind words.
    And for linking to me.
    I'm not an every day blogger, chosing to write only when the mood strikes.
    I understand that you have someone serving?
    Feel free to email me anytime you want to talk.
    My address is in my profile.
    Dad

    Gary,
    I've worked hard to over come the compulsion to write every day.
    Time just doesn't allow it.
    I read every day though, and check for comments.
    Thanks for being there.

    Mickey,
    Most people who come home from war have changed.
    Not always a good idea to ask why.
    Where have you been.
    I tried to check on you, but got a weird message that you weren't around any longer?
    Thanks for dropping by.

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  5. I sent you an email, change of address. Might of been the time when you were changing machines. Maybe you didn't get it.

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  6. I found you.
    And changed the link.

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  7. oh crap!! It's been 3 weeks and I haven't posted my dance yet.

    I'M SORRY!!

    stay tuned.

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  8. Seems like some things just never end.... (sigh)

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