Today we said "good-bye" to Albert for our longest time apart yet. He will be participating in the war for the next 60 days or so, and I could not have asked for a sweeter good-bye than the one we had today.
Albert has been sick for the last couple of days, and last night the only one who slept well was our dog, Piper. So, our last couple of days have not exactly been a dream. Today we all went to the base Exchange to pick up a couple of last minute things. After lunch we headed over to a local Bar-B-Q place to pick up dinner for the whole crew, then on to the flight line. I always have a hard time the last couple of days before Albert leaves. Yesterday, I felt somewhat emotionally checked out. I was not on the verge of tears, like normal, but just wanted to sit quietly. Of course, that didn't happen, but that is where my mind was all day. Today, I was on the verge of tears, or crying, most of the morning. But, it was D-day, and whether I was crying or not, he would have to go. So, the boys and I dropped him and all of his bags off in front of the squadron. I was able to meet a couple of the other wives who's husbands were going on the same trip. The three of us decided to hang out until the guys were ready to fire up the engines. I have not hung out with many of the wives in our squadron, so this was a little bit of a stretch, but very refreshing for me. The guys all started calling around 1500 and we headed their way. They met us in front of the squadron and escorted us in. We walked through the hanger and C was in awe of the huge plane being so close. We stood their for a little while and said our good-byes, cried, and watched them walk out to the plane. The hardest part was keeping C near us and out of the hanger. One of the other wives gave us a good laugh by texting our last minute questions to her husband on the plane. We discovered that Albert was one of the pilots, which made me pretty proud. They fired up the engines and taxied our way. Albert was in the right seat and signed "I love you" out the window. I wanted to hang on to that moment for longer than it lasted. C was excited to see the plane so close, but didn't quite understand Daddy being the one driving it. We stood outside of the hanger and watched the plane take off and fly out of site. A Chief was standing with us, as we still had to have an escort, and our conversations lightened the tension of the moment. I still cried, but the tears were gone quicker than most of the time. I hate being apart. I know that this mission is very important, and I am thankful that our family is able to be a part of it.
So, please pray for us in this time of separation and know that if I seem distracted, it is not because conversation or life is boring, I am just longing for the sweet reunion that is to come.