I put my son on a plane today, to a foreign country, without a cell phone, knowing I will not see him for 2 years. I don’t even let him drive to the grocery store without tracking him on GPS so this is a difficult change and a day of letting go. It’s hard. I’ve tried to ignore that this day was coming.
Missions are not usually this sad. Coming up on the 2 year anniversary of Amos’s death adds a little sting because Porter is so much like him. He has his mannerisms and his brilliance and his wisdom. I almost started thinking about my little 5 year old Porter today but then I remembered advice a friend sent me yesterday.
“I am feeling for your momma heart! She said, “Be prepared to say goodbye and let your little boy go. Then don’t look back on his childhood because it will kill you. Instead look forward to the day you get to meet the man he’s become with the Lord’s help and tutoring.”
This is wise council from a mom who knows. Part of me feels that Porter has already been so refined and isn’t a regular teenaged boy going to become a man. He has already grown so much through his trials over the past two years.
For his last day at home, Porter wanted to go to the temple and the cemetery before we took him to the airport.
We had a sleepy car drive to the temple because everyone stayed up too late not wanting his last night at home to end and the sun was a little too shiny for this temple photo.
The cemetery was beautiful. My mom always told me my brother’s spirit didn’t live at the cemetery so we didn’t visit it often. It’s true that they don’t stay in one place because I’ve felt Amos in a bunch of places lately but taking the time to go and focus on his memory definitely invited him to be with us for a little while today.
We had lunch with Hannah and Phoebe’s family then went to the airport where all of his sisters fell to pieces.
I let them skip school today again and I think this will put them all over the edge for allowable school absences for the year and it’s still August. It was worth it for them to get a few more minutes with him.
I felt a calmness knowing he is doing what he is supposed to be doing and that he is in the Lord’s hands now. Besides, how many people are lucky enough to have their dad as another mission companion?
Every night since Amos passed away, Porter has taken a few minutes after family scripture study to help us all understand what we read and how to apply it to our lives. As we were leaving the airport Blakely said through her tears;
“Mom, who will explain the scriptures now?”
I told her she would have to step up her game. I think we all will.