My Soldier Daughter is 'Home' for a Visit!
Unfortunately, we won't see her for the whole month because she has to divide her time between family and friends in three different States, each far apart. So it will boil down to about 10 days with her parents, 10 days with her sister and brother-in-law and nieces and nephew and cousins and grandma, and 4 days or so with another cousin and Aunt.
This is actually her first visit back in over four years: the last time we saw her, we were all together in Israel for our older son's wedding, in March 2008; but she hasn't been back in the States since 2005, a long time. She was only fifteen then, having been in Israel for 8 months or so, in her first year of Israeli high school.
What can I say? The IDF has been good for her: she looks wonderful! She is in the best shape she has been in her entire life, and wants to continue being in top athletic condition. Is is so good to see her and be with her, I don't know how I will let her go again. . . it is 'hitting home' how separated we are from family, and how--ok, I have to admit it: lonely it is without the kids nearby, and without being at least peripherally involved in their lives and their families.
However, the word 'home' is relative. I know that this is not her home anymore; I understand that. She made a decision to make her home in Israel when she was still a teenager. It seems like eons ago.
It's ironic that I succeeded in my teaching and inculcating Zionism and a love of Israel in my kids, and that took them all away from me. . .
(but, at least I have my new little hamster. Please feed him by clicking your mouse to drop food pellets. totally random.)