August 14, 2011
I know you can't tell by looking at me (wishful thinking...), but I have 2 teenaged sons. My eldest, affectionately blog-named, The Boy), is almost 17 and he is about to leave the nest. Well only for 2 weeks, but it feels like he will be gone forever! The Boy is on his way to Mexico with a group from our church to do a short-term mission. I couldn't be more proud of him, he has a servant's heart and missions is a perfect extension of that.
They will be in the far South of the Baja peninsula at a mission that houses an orphanage and has a macadamia nut orchard. They will be working with the kids, doing manual labour, clearing brush in the orchards and working in the migrant camps with both kids and adults. Real hands on, life-changing stuff. I can't wait for him to get home and tell me all about it!
After being up until after 11, doing last minute packing, we were up by 3:30 am to take him to the airport. I had a hard time not sobbing the whole way. I took him in, he joined his group and got checked in. He gave me a few hugs and I tried to choke back my tears. I was the only mom hanging around, so I soon made my exit, even though everything in me screamed that I should keep him in my sight as long as humanly possible.
I knew he was feeling my mixed emotions, he is empathetic to the extreme. When we asked him how he was feeling on the way to the airport, he said he was worried about how his little brothers and sisters would handle him being gone. We reassured him, and that is part of why I wanted to get out of there. He was excited and I didn't want to taint that.
When I got back out to the car, I told my husband that it was just like his first day of kindergarten. He ran off excitedly, ready for the new adventure, while I stood back, watching him in awe and balling. And I think that is how it is supposed to be. We raise them so that we can launch them off into the world. We are left behind, but hopefully ready to begin our next adventure too.