When it came time to take my husband in to work I was still ok. He and the kids said goodbye to each other, said their "I love you's" and we left with minimal tears (aside from the daughter).
We got to the gate and the guards pulled us over for a random inspection... they wiped the steering wheel, door, and something in the back of our vehicle (where all of my husbands gear was). BIG SURPRISE: I hear a BEEP!
The guard came back to the front of the vehicle.
Guard: I got to swab it again.
Me: Did it make your machines beep?
Guard: Yes. It tested positive for explodey stuff (I swear to GOD he said explodey).
Me: My husband is an engineer! He has magazines for his weapon back there! OF COURSE he is going to test positive for splodeys!
They swabbed it again but this time left his gear alone. We passed.
We got to the company and it all began. It seemed like any other day, and I have to say I was proud of what I saw. Everyone was carrying on like it was another day, there were no tears, and no signs of sadness. There were weapons and bags everywhere but the overall feeling was upbeat. I was glad for that, I could not handle depressing.
There was still last minute stuff to be done, and I ended up having to run back home to get some stuff from Jeff's Army room. I got back and they were all getting their weapons and going back to spend time with their families; still no tears. I saw one family who is completely new to this making happy memories rather than crying.
I was glad I got to be with my husband and spend that time with him and the men he works with.
After all the weapons had been issued, all the extra equipment found a place to go, and all of the bags had been placed in the truck, trailers, or buses it was time for the last few minutes we would be together.
And last minute smokes.
We took pictures, and we were still smiling.
I told my husband that I love him, he replied with "I love you more", I tell him "Impossible"...
I let him know that I will miss him and to take care. Even in those last seconds we had to say goodbye and get our last hugs and kisses that we would get for a year there were no tears, not even from the young families brand new to this. I was proud. I was proud for my husband, proud for his soldiers, proud for all of the soldiers! I was proud of the young wife who just spent months without her husband because he was at basic training and was just reunited with him in November, and who is going through her first deployment with a beautiful little girl alone in a strange country; she did not cry. We know that by crying we make it harder on our husbands and possibly any one else that might see us. To me this is Army Strong.
I did go and immediately buy some wine, but I went home and did not drink any of it. That night... we will see how tonight goes.