Saturday, May 9, 2009


Photo: ADVON returning from a year-long deployment.

Okay, I have to admit that after 15+ years as an Army wife, I don’t know what ‘TORCH’ and ‘ADVON’ stand for. Something about advanced party … but there’s no ‘p’ for ‘party’ … so I just don’t know. I do, however, know what it means. It means your Soldier comes home FIRST!!

We’ve never had the honor of either of those designations. My husband somehow manages to get himself into the ‘stay-behind-and-make-sure-all is-well-out-here’ job and comes home late or last. Not that I’m complaining, though, as I am happy these TORCH and ADVON folks get here and get the place ready for everyone else to come home.

In a way, it’s reassuring to me. The wheels are turning, the process has begun … our unit actually is coming home and coming home soon! Homecoming becomes reality, not just a long-sought-after dream. It’s good to see our unit patch and our unit Soldiers back at home, on U.S. soil and on our Army installation.

It’s heartening to watch husbands reunite with wives; mothers and fathers welcome their son or daughter home; children screaming, “There he is! There he is!” when they catch site of their dad marching toward them.

Plus, I have the extra time I need to get the carpets cleaned, lawn mowed, garage cleaned out (again!), and finish all those little projects that, a year ago, were planned to help pass the time during the deployment (learn a new language, scrapbook the last ten years of our family events, take up running as a life sport, not just a means to catch the dog when she escapes into the neighborhood …).

I also get the practice of seeing the other welcome home ceremonies first. I have now perfected the best route to the welcome home location, picked out a prime parking spot, and checked out all the cute welcome-home outfits as inspiration for finding my own. Not to mention, I was able to hug our heroes as they arrived home.

Welcome home, Soldiers!

1 comment:

  1. I love your post!! It makes me misty eyed as I read this to know how an army wife thought of things when this happened. I was National Guard and on the other side of things. I didn't have a husband to greet me when I came home then but saw everyone else and know the excitement you feel when you come home. Now years later I am out and married. My husband is active duty and coming home soon! And I laugh because my dog was the one I chased through the neighborhood!! How horrible lol. It's been so busy for me and I had a moment to realize, wow! I have no time to get ready! It's soon!! A friend of mine asked what ADVON was.. being prior service no one ever understands my lingo lol... you explain it perfect :) Thank you for making me slow down today & feel and not be "soldier."


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