The kids helped me make signs for the airport for when C arrived. We had our neighbors Gail and Clay, my parents and D's parents there with us to welcome him home. I. Could. Not. Wait!! Every time a new set of people came down the escalators I ran to ask them where they were arriving from so that we could be ready holding our signs. And, so that I could hold me son again. :)
While waiting at the bottom of the middle escalators my mom said, "I see C." I responded, "You do not!",because he was clearly not right in front of me. "Yes, yes I do. I see C", my mom said again. And then frantically looking around, I said, "Shut up. Where?"
I stood there watching him greet everyone and the confidence that he had. My son had grown up. I just wanted to freeze time.
C called A to say hello since he is still at college for another week. It was fun hearing my boys talk again and know that they'll see each other soon and then be off to school together.
7:00 came and we were at President Gates' home ready to see C be released as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The Stake President Spoke to him and gave him some instruction and then had him sit in the chair. As I heard the words of our stake president while releasing C, I couldn't help but open my eyes and watch my son. He was crying. Just a few hours earlier he had told D that he doesn't cry anymore. But there he was, sobbing knowing that he would no longer be a missionary. That the life that he had come to know and love would be over. I cried as I watched my son cry, knowing that he had truly loved being a missionary. When the prayer was over, C asked him if he needed to take his name tag off. You could tell he didn't want to. President Gates told him that he could keep it on as long as he wanted as he smiled at C. I'm sure he has seen that with most missionaries.
Afterwards, we went to Panda Express, grabbed dinner for everyone and headed home. One of my friends had bought us Martinelli's to celebrate C's arrival. It was fun celebrating with him home at our own kitchen table. He was home now.