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When I announced early on after my son’s death I would be at the homecoming of his fellow soldiers I received a lot of reactions. From how strong I must be to how crazy I am for putting myself in to a situation that would surely bring me more pain. What most did not understand is that early on I had been given one last gift by my son. The gift of these men who had a bond with him that I will never know but that I see, appreciate and respect. a part of him is with each other them.

In just a few short days the men my son lived, worked and fought beside will be home. Deployment has ended and they are all returning safe to the loving arms of their families. My son will be the only soldier from Bravo Company not walking off the plane this deployment. A fact that both hurts me deeply and relieves me. They all honored him by staying safe and coming home. Just as they assured me.

I will be there when these men walk off the plane. I will stand quietly in the background as they hug their families. I will wait my turn to finally meet and hug the men who have become so much a part of my life. And with each of them I will have one more part of my son home. Because he is with them. A part of him is in every single one of him and they are bringing the last part of him home with them. So in a way my son too will be on that plane.

Other Gold Star moms who attend these homecomings assure me the healing this will be for me. Of course as I look at this world of Gold Star Parent I have been thrust into I see that those who are best at living with this incredible pain are the ones who opened and accepted the gift of the men who shared the bond of brotherhood with their sons. They see our loved ones spirit is a part of each of these men and by embracing them we are embracing a part of our sons.

The down side to all this is I can not longer escape into fooling myself he is just in Iraq working anymore when my missing him becomes unbearable. I miss My Pokey so much and to have to accept the last reality that I will never hold him or hear his voice again is devasting the final thread in my rope of strength…

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