Saturday, May 12, 2012


I waited to post anything about this until he was home, but...Chet is home!  (No, it hasn't been 7+ months since he left, in case you were worried about a wrinkle in time or something.)  At the beginning of April he was assigned to take a group of Seabees to a Marine outpost about 50 miles away from Camp Leatherneck (the base he was stationed in Afghanistan).  Their job was to build two SWA huts for the Marines at the outpost.  April 10th, Chet tore the ACL in his right knee on the construction site.  He stayed at the outpost until the job was completed, but when he returned to Camp Leatherneck they began arrangements to send him home for surgery.  He will not be returning to Afghanistan this deployment (it's a 6-month+ recovery from surgery, and his battalion will have returned by then). 

Chet left Afghanistan last Sunday (April 29th) and arrived home a week ago (May 5th). He had a three-day stop in Germany, where he was SPOILED ROTTEN by the USO staff. He felt very undeserving of the gifts and 5-star treatment he received, but I love knowing that our military members are appreciated for their sacrifices.  Here are some letters/notes that were left on his bed:

The long letter you see there was written by a little girl in elementary school.  Here are a couple of great quotes from her letter:

"You have done so much for me and our country.  I really give thanks to you for helping keeping me safe."


(after explaining that she is one of three young children) "My moms name is Kathy, she dosent have a job."  (Ha!  Think again, little one!)

The paper with a heart on it is from a much younger child.  Inside it says "Your my best friend.  Be good."  I LOVE what little kids write!

Okay, back to the knee injury.  Even though the orthopedic surgeon is sure the ACL is torn, Chet is scheduled for an MRI the 17th.  He will see the doctor the following Monday (the 21st) to discuss the MRI results, and then surgery will be scheduled.  We are really hoping he has surgery by June 1st, just to get this party started as soon as possible.  (For those of you who don't know, I tore my ACL in high school and had it repaired...I wouldn't wish the surgery/recovery process on ANYONE!) 

It is strange/wonderful/unexpected to have Chet home.  When your husband leaves for deployment, you expect to see them when the deployment is over...not sooner.  You would think I would be only thrilled to have him back (don't get me wrong, I AM thrilled), but I think both of us are still trying to wrap our heads around the unexpected change in plans.  When I first learned he was coming home, I felt guilty, because it didn't seem fair for him to be home while all of the other husbands were still away.  (Granted, it's not going to be all fun and games what with knee surgery and recovery.)  Then I thought about it a little more and realized it had been 95 days since we had seen him...and that is a long time.  Not as long as it was supposed to be, but still long.  I can only pray that the next few months fly by for the rest of the families we know. 

Sydney and Lorelei are thrilled to have Daddy home.  For the last 3+ months, when I would ask Sydney "Where's Daddy?", her answer was "Daddy's working in Afghanistan."  When she saw him Sunday morning (he got in too late Saturday to see her) you could tell she was shocked, but she warmed up very quickly.  Now she says, "Daddy's working at home."  Ha!  Lorelei is as excited as a 6-month old can be about Daddy being back.  I'm very excited about him getting to see Lorelei, because he was in Djibouti when Sydney was 5-11 months old, and completely missed this baby stage.  He is totally in love with her.

Saturday Night

Sunday Morning

  I'll keep you posted on surgery details!


Raquel said...

I'm so glad he got home safe! And I'm lovin' that big cheeked smile on Lorelei! Our prayers are with Chet for a speedy recovery! Love you guys!

Anonymous said...

Welcome home, Chet! Good luck with the knee. -PJ

Danielle said...

Oh, Ashley, I'm crying like a little baby reading this post! I'm so thankful for you, Chet, and all the other military families out there that have to go through that separation/worry/anxiety about their THANK YOU. To you, Chet, Sydney and Lorelei (for giving up their Daddy) is MUCH appreciated! I hope Chet has a successful surgery and quick recovery!

Casey said...

OKAY - I saw this post second!! I'm glad he's home safe (Sooner is better than later!!!) So sorry for his ACL, hopefully the surgery goes wells and he has a quick recovery!! I hope y'all still come in July as planned!!!