Last August, Pop Pop and I witnessed heartbreak...
In March, it was pure joy for a mid-tour leave...
|This photo STILL makes me cry!|
|Wait, you're the "Daddy" from the pictures! That's you, right?|
And for the whole year that her daddy has been in Afghanistan, we have been blessed with so much of the muchness that is so good for Grammas and Grampas...
|Look at that face! We can't get enough...|
But this last week was bittersweet, to say the least. As soon as we left our driveway for the 600 mile journey to the Army base Mork will soon return home to, we knew that we were 1200 miles away from home. He was farther, and his journey will likely take longer than the approximately 20 hours we spent driving to and from the place Mork, Mindy and Peanut will now call home.
On the one hand, if he had not been deployed, we would not have had this amazing year with Peanut and Mindy living locally. On the other hand, who wants their kid to go to Afghanistan and carry big guns? I mean, maybe there are parents out there that would be excited at the prospect...not me. Don't get me wrong, this has been a GREAT YEAR (just look at the pictures!), but I wish Mork could have also shared personally in the many joys we were so privileged to witness firsthand.
Now that the time has come for him to be home with his wife and daughter on a permanent basis, we are thrilled! We are also heartbroken that "home" for them is a 10 hour drive that we cannot make 3-4 times each week. But the better thing is (and has ALWAYS been) that this little family will be together...
Last week, we loaded up the cars with their stuff (5 cars in total, traveling in 3 different "waves" to the new apartment), and we drove them down and helped Mindy turn an empty apartment into a beautiful homecoming for her one true love. Pop Pop and I helped to move boxes, assemble furniture, unpack boxes, wipe down and wash things that had been in storage for the past year, and grab all the Peanut snuggles we possibly could.
|Pop Pop's little flower.|
It was pretty tough to leave, but we know that they will be fine...better than fine...Daddy is coming home VERY SOON! :) And, at the end of our 1200 miles we realized that we have made that same 1200 mile journey before, and we can (and definitely WILL) make it again. We won't see them as often as we are accustomed to, but we will see them.
So we say a prayer of thanks for the time we've had, and a prayer of thanks that Mork is coming HOME. We say a prayer of protection over them as they wait for Mork, and as they all get reacquainted. We say a prayer of thanks that there will be a leave after his return, and we pray that their plan to come back to us during that leave goes off without a hitch. And, at the end of our prayers, we are already planning our first visit. :)
What are you thankful for today?