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Welcome Home

By , Sturgis, SD
My eyes snapped open as I realized what day it was: it was the day that my dad was coming home from Afghanistan after his year-long tour. I was so happy. I hopped out of bed and ran downstairs to find my mom making breakfast. “Excited?” my mom asked. “Yes!” I replied. We quickly ate breakfast and I ran upstairs to get ready. I sped through getting ready and zoomed through my chores.

It was a perfect day outside. The sun was shining and the birds were singing. We hopped in the car and began driving to the airport. The car ride seemed to take forever, but we finally arrived at the airport. We parked the car and went into the airport. My dad’s plane wasn’t arriving for half an hour, so we settled down to wait with the other families whose relatives were coming home.

The seconds slowly ticked by until the flight monitors displayed that my dad’s plane would be arriving in 5 minutes. I was so excited that I was literally bouncing in my seat. We saw the plane taxi in from the runway and I got anxious. And then the questions hit me: How different would my dad be? Would he be the same relaxed, easy-going guy I remember? Or would he be jumpy and nervous like some war veterans? I pushed those thoughts away and just focused on finally seeing my dad.

A few men I didn’t recognize got off the jet way. The terminal suddenly got very crowded. Somewhere in the mix my mom and I got separated. I went searching for her in the crowd and accidentally ran into someone. “Excuse me,” I muttered. The man I ran into grabbed me by the arm. I looked into his face and I realized it was my dad. “Dad!” I squealed as I gave him a huge hug. We found my mom and we were finally together as a family. I was so happy that my dad was finally with us again.

We got into the car and drove to our house. Our house was decked out with balloons and a huge “Welcome Home” sign. We got inside and had another family hug. “Welcome home, Dad,” I said, so glad that he was home with us, safe and sound.





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