The Double B is off to the Midwest.
I compare this to Frodo heading to Mordor to destroy the ring.
His Mom just came over to get her cleaning bucket so she could give her floor a good scrubbing. She cried -- which totally and completely broke my heart, as his Mom has almost Herculean strength. Of course, then she put herself right back into check and gave me the good advice to just scrub, scrub, scrub away today. The Double B is her baby, and other then the two years of his L.D.S. mission, he has never lived far away from her. He is her caretaker. He was born to be her caretaker, really. And now he is going off to live eighteen and a half hours away. At moments like this, when the wife is crying and the Mom is crying and everything feels torn up, it seems like a totally bad idea. If we didn't feel like God had moved all the chess pieces into place it would be a different story. But after doing all that we could do, we asked, asked, and asked Him to direct us where we needed to go. And we told Him we would go wherever He sent us.
And He sent us.
So we won't be going back on our word now.
Olivia kept commanding her Dad this morning "You're not going anywhere! I'm not going to let you go!" She is so crazy about her Dad. Her alternative was to just have him take her with him. They could stay in a hotel that had butlers, and the butlers could watch her while he was at work. Really, I think she is wanting to protect him.
K.J. also thought it would be a great idea if Olivia went with Daddy. He knows Daddy will be lonely and Olivia is brave enough to do it.
Yesterday I felt so vulnerable all day, sort of emotionally overloaded. And then they had the Special Needs Mutual do the sacrament meeting (worship service), and watching those incredibly special children of God sing and tell us their stories actually had the tears FLYING off of my face. It was so, so inspiring. And then to go to primary and hear the older kids talk about the very special feeling they had in that meeting and have them recognize that it was the Holy Ghost testifying that God loves His children, and hearing them express love for everyone -- because we are ALL different -- was so tender. We sang a beautiful song that is called "I'll Walk With You." It is one of my very, very favorites. It talks about being strong and a friend for those who might walk or talk differently or might have other differences -- that we can be like Jesus and treat everyone as He would. I asked the kids specific questions about the song, and one was "Do we walk away from people who are different then we are?" Of course they gave a big loud NO! "So how do we treat them?" I asked. One boy in K.J.'s class raised his hand and enthusiastically answered "We be AWESOME to them!!!" Oh. My. I told him I was borrowing that term and was now going to use it in my daily life. We just be awesome to those that need us. Which is, face it, everyone. We all need each other.
The Double B received many kind words and left feeling so thankful to have been part of a congregation that is truly a family. We came home and packed some more. Well, he packed and I laid on the bed and watched him pack because my head was SO mad at me for all the salty fireworks. Ba-boom, ba-boom, ba-boom. And I felt so -- vulnerable. Only word for it. Really. Watching him get ready to lead us in a grand adventure.
We had a wonderful visit at my parents and played the Double B's favorite game: Hand and Foot. Trina and my Dad beat us, which was not the plan. The Double B swore vengeance the next time we are all together. It felt like just another Sunday night, and in fact, he headed out to the car and was ready to get in until I asked "Aren't you going to go say goodbye?" He stopped surprised and said "I honestly just didn't think of that." Like he would be back next week for the rematch. But he won't be. He'll be mid-westing it. After watching teary eyed from the corner, we headed for his parents.
The Double B's parents are a little older, especially his dad. In fact, his Dad will be 88 in just a couple of weeks. It is hard to leave when your Dad is so elderly. But we had a great visit. He asked his Dad to give him a Father's Blessing. His Dad was surprised and touched. He isn't very stable on his feet, so there was some discussion if he could stay up, but he just got a good grip on the Double B's head and gave a very nice blessing. He told the Double B that all would be well -- that he will travel safely, find kind people of our faith that will help him, and that we will be able to make many friends there and enjoy our life just like we do here. He thanked Heavenly Father for the opportunity the Double B has been given. It was really a beautiful picture. My big grown up husband with his black hair sitting on a chair with arms folded and his Dad, a little more feeble and white haired, with his hands on his head blessing him. I closed my eyes for a moment, but then couldn't help but watch the beautiful scene. In fact, I believe it is a picture I will remember forever. As I was enjoying the moment, K.J. on my lap and Katee on Grandma Kate's, I saw Olivia, who had been standing in the corner, start to walk over to me. She hissed "Mom! Mom!" I shushed her, but she looked at me with a very stern look on her face and then gave me the signal -- two fingers out and pointed to me, then pressing them against her own eyes -- she was letting me know that I needed to close my eyes. I couldn't help but smile, but I obeyed -- most of the way. I was squinting to see what she would do. She walked with great satisfaction back to her corner, knowing she had done her duty, and then watched to make sure I kept my eyes closed for the rest of the blessing. What a girl.
Daddy is heading to Denver for the night and will then continue on, hopefully making it early enough in the evening tomorrow night to get into Costco and meet the new people he will be working with. Then the search begins. And when he finds us our new house, we will join him. If possible, he will fly out to get us, but because of the holiday season and how busy his department will be, it is more likely my willing and gracious parents get to road trip us out there to reunite as a family.
Either way. We'll be happy to be with our Daddy again.