The End of

The War of Chicago Winter

Tomorrow I am leaving.  I am going home.  To the sweet gentleness of the Carolinas.  My planet.  My father and brother-in-law will be waiting for me at the airport, while my husband gets our new house ready.   In a neighborhood just down the street from my long time girlfriend.  My mother on her way.

I have been away for a long time.   I know my family has been supporting me and praying for my safe return all this time.  I can feel their joy as this day finally comes.  I was searching for a way to describe how it feels.  This going home.  I realized I feel like a wounded veteran.

Because It has been a very long time of fighting for me.  I came here with the innocence of a young soldier not knowing the battles ahead.  When it dropped to 40 degrees that first winter I asked someone if it was going to get any colder?  They shook their head and laughed.  Not a ‘ha ha funny’ laugh.  A ‘oh you are f—d’ laugh.

The long, lonely, dark, cold winters with small children here in Chicago was the war.  The worst battles when they were sick and I was alone.   I met many heroes in my time served.  These super heroes took me under their wings and taught me everything they know.  They are the reason I survived.  We formed a bond as strong and permanent as blood relatives.   They will always be my family and my heroes.  I wish they could come with me to my planet.

I, on the other hand, have to go.  This last winter was a battle I almost lost.  I guess the rule in war is, when you lose a body part you get to go home.

There have been many tearful goodbyes and many goodbyes I didn’t get to say.  I wanted to do more to celebrate the friendships and the battles won.  But even that turned into a battle.  Instead of celebrations this weekend, winter blew in early.  The temperatures dropped and I was alone again.  Very sick with very sick children.  My husband unable to fly in to help.

So this going home.  I am just going to get there.  One way or another.  If I have to crawl to the airport and fly the plane myself.

I am minus some body parts and a lot of tears.  I have a big scar up the middle.  I get to take 3 of my 4 children with me.  My oldest off in a country with a different kind of war going on.  I am hoping I didn’t teach him that life is about living in a war zone.  Now I am the one praying for his safe return.

I feel worn down and war torn.  I need a good rest.  I need the warm sunshine.  I need my family together.  I am ready.

All the people I love here are in my heart.   Now It is time to take my heart home.


3 thoughts on “The War of Chicago Winter

  1. Maggie Collins says:

    No matter where you roam the Carolinas is always home. Sounds like the start of a poem or a country song. How true it is though. Not only is your heart always in The Carolinas but so is part of your soul. And when it is TheTime to come home no illness can keep you from getting there to chicken soup, fuzzy slippers, that Southern drawl asking Honey can I get you anything or What can I get you Sweetie and as you are tucked in bed or on the couch with the well worn throw or in some cases a snugglie and your favorite lovey whether it is a pillow or actual stuffed animal, there is not a snow storm or never ending runny nose that can keep you away. Welcome Home.

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