What do deployed soldiers miss?

As I’m about the embark on my trip to Afghanistan I’m starting to get sentimental as I imagine what it’ll be like to be away from home.  I think one of the reasons the US Military accepts media embeds is so the general public can look at the military experience through a civilian’s eyes and see what a deployment is like for the Troops on the ground.    I have some first-hand experience.  In 2009 I spent a year getting to know Red Bull Soldiers and their families for a documentary called “Iraq & Back: Minnesotans’ Stories“.  The Soldiers and families let me into their lives and I was able to share their stories with others.  To boil it down to one sentence I learned, deployments are difficult for everyone involved.  

Two nights ago I was on an evening bike ride I was thinking back of LTC Dan Bohmer’s recent post.  Bohmer is serving with the Zabul Agribusiness Development Team in Afghanistan.  He mentioned some of the things he missed, it was a short and humble list: pizza, touch, jeans.  While I was biking around town I was thinking about what it is I’ll miss.

What are some of the small things you missed while you were deployed?

Everyday things I’m no longer taking for granted

  • waiting for the shower to be neither too hot, nor too cold
  • hearing ‘Batman’ say,  “good night Superman” after his bedtime stories
  • eating a bowl of cereal at 9:30pm
  • preparing my own meals

LTC Bohmer and the Soldiers of the ZADT he is serving with are going 10 months without the four things I just mentioned.  I surely can make it 18 days.