Don’t Spend Homecoming With Charlie Sheen

Posted August 14, 2013

By Jacey Eckhart

Eckhart joins 5 other mil-bloggers who, over the next few months, will share their deployment-related stories. You can catch up on all their blog posts on the Blue Star Families Blog and don’t forget to take a look at BSF’s free e-book “Everyone Serves: A Handbook for Family and Friends of Service Members During Pre-Deployment, Deployment and Reintegration.”

“Other people’s homecomings are easy. Whenever anyone writes us at SpouseBuzz about whether or not their in-laws should come stay with them during homecoming or whether their grandma should really be planning to wear that American flag tube top to the pier, we have answers.

The answers to all homecoming questions boil down to: Keep Homecoming Simple, Stupid.

Because when it comes to someone else’s homecoming, it is easy to remember how the troops have been traveling for 24 hours before they arrive. It’s easy to remember how all the people clamoring for their attention is fun for all of five minutes.

It is, in fact, quite hard to explain the regrettable homecoming incident when your mother-in-law discovered the two of you pressed up against the side of the minivan wearing nothing but a happy expression. Just sayin’.

So you would think that by now I would know better than to overplan my husband’s eighth homecoming—which is days away.

Nope. It turns out that your own homecoming thing is a lot like those DirecTV ads about not falling into a dinner party or not ending up in a Turkish bath house reenacting scenes from Platoon with Charlie Sheen.

This time I can almost hear the announcer doing a voiceover on my little life that would go something like:

“When you find out the deployment is ending, you want a Welcome Home sign.

When your Welcome Home sign looks small and boring so you stuff it in the back of your minivan and get on Pinterest to get a better idea.

When you get overwhelmed by so many better ideas, you suddenly think it is a great idea to buy a housewrap printed with “Welcome Home: Report For Booty.”

When your booty sign is up, everyone finds out that your servicemember is coming home so they show up to celebrate.

When they celebrate, your servicemember comes home to a house full of his children, his friends, his entire graduating class, and his grandma in a tube top.

When his house is so full of people, he creeps out to the garage to catch his breath.

When he catches his breath, he turns around to see you bending over into the minivan to retrieve your tiny homecoming sign. Don’t bend over a homemade Welcome Home sign. Keep Homecoming Simple, Stupid.”

Yup. Homecoming has a way of getting completely out of control all by itself. That is it’s nature. So this time I am telling myself to stay away from good ideas on Pinterest. Instead, I will remind myself to KHSS. On Homecoming Day I’ll skip the sign altogether and put on a red dress and a big smile– and I will steer far, far away from the garage. For awhile, anyway.”