Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The BIG Goodbye

Nothing makes saying goodbye easy. No, not even this large pound of Sees Nuts and Chews that I bought myself. Sam had a month long training in Germany, in March. We went back and forth with plans and finally decided that the kids and I would head back to the states (where we would be living for the upcoming deployment). He would come out later to meet us. There we would have two weeks together and then say goodbye. He would leave for the 9 month deployment. 

This air port goodbye was rough. We got gate passes so we could spend some extra time with him. Now that I've gone through a few of these tough goodbyes, I can only describe them as more than emotional pain. It's a physical pain too. As grown adults we have literally cried ourselves to sleep together multiple times. This goodbye was especially hard. We were to be apart nine months and he would be missing the birth of our baby. It's strange writing this post after the fact. I am just so grateful he came home early and he was there for the birth of our baby boy.
Being in Utah (after we had said goodbye) while he was in Germany (not yet deployed) was tough. There were a couple more weeks we could have been with him if we were there. I finally decided to make a move that made both my husband and my dad mad. I put the kids in the car late one afternoon and I drove to Nampa, ID where we stayed in a hotel from midnight til 3AM.Tthe next morning we got up and drove to McCord, WA and from there we caught a military flight back to Germany. It bought us over one week with Sam and a few more weeks in Germany during one of the most beautiful seasons of the year. Worth it.

This is the day we really said goodbye to Sam. Our amazing, and I do mean amazing, Landlords asked us to lunch where they fed Sam his favorite meal- asparagus, potatoes, brats and hollandaise sauce. Normally that would've been nice, but he just so happen to have gotten food poisoning the night before at a nice restaurant where we decided to treat ourselves to a special meal with the kids. Poor Sam ended up in the hospital in Ramstein and sick for over a week. He missed the first flight he was supposed to be on with a lot of guys from his unit, but ended up getting out a day or two later. I felt so bad for him. 
If you ask Sam, he thinks I am so annoying with the pictures I always want to take! He may not admit it, but I think he is usually glad we have them. We took a bunch of self timer pics the morning he left.

After Sam had been called to a final formation, Trip was calling for him and wanted to say goodbye one more time. I'm telling you.. so sad. The hardest thing for me about having Sam away is seeing how it affects the kids. And Sam. I hate seeing my loved ones hurt. Oh and it sucks for me too! :) ha
A final hug for little Londyn.
One last brownie covered kiss for Trip.
We watched Sam walk away. He is the tall one in the group in the distance. We waited around for over an hour to watch them drive by. (They took buses up to their departure place.) Recounting all these moments makes me cry. They are emotions I am not sure I will ever forget. But, I know we are closer and stronger because of the tough times, so I try not to focus on all the hard and negative parts about these separations. We saw his face one last time through the window and then the wait began!

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