Monday, June 9, 2008

homecoming

My babies' father has returned home.

Rephrase: the father of the children whom I nanny five days a week has returned home, to his lovely wife.

I babysat when they picked him up from the airport yesterday, and I could just see the excitement in their eyes when I walked in the door. They had put up signs and cards, "welcome home, Dad! We Miss you! We Love you!" Michelle was positively glowing.

When they returned with him there was already a sense of peace in the household. Michelle has been so stressed recently, as the time approached to full year and in anticipation of his homecoming. My mom told me the weeks before they come home are always the worst. That's when stress hits its highest point, and the kids are at their worst because they also have been stressed out without dad. But as soon as he walked in that door I could almost breathe their relief: Dad's home.

I met him today more officially and he is an incredibly nice man. (Extremely huge and scary. But nice.) I ran into his weapon as I walked in the door. (Madison: Oh, it's not scary. It just looks fake.) Right, fake until it shoots at you and you're dead in a millisecond. But he is a great dad, and the kids just adore him.

It reminds me of when my father returned from deployments: I wouldn't know what to do with him in our house, but at the same time I loved knowing he was back under the roof again. I don't care if its complementarian or whatever the hell you want to call it: there is something irreplaceable about a man's presence in the house. Safety, security, comfort. Travis has already brought that to the Southwick household.

I am just so excited for the Southwicks to have their Daddy home from war, safe and sound. Watching them suffer and wait for so long without him, him coming home to 4 month old babies he has barely seen (whom I know better than he does)...these things make me hate the military and the stress it puts on families.

But to watch how gracefully Michelle has lived this past year, and to see how proud the kids are of their father serving this country, also helps me remember how much pride I have for the military in my heart. Being a military kid for 20 years imprinted an affinity for the military onto my heart that no amount of bleeding liberalism can ever erase.

No matter how often I try.

1 comment:

ashley joy said...

Beautiful. Just beautiful.