Jack is my first little bird to leave the nest, and it was ... hard. I had prepared myself for him to go to college. Possibly even to move out of our home to go to college. And even to go to another city to college, if that's what he chose. But, I guess my heart wasn't ready to put him on a plane to China for 10 months.
We spent the last month busy with all the preparations - mostly paperwork - to get him ready to go. Then, the last week, as his departure was becoming imminent, the reality of him leaving really began to hit home.
We had a going away party for him. He has been blessed with so many really good kid and adult friends.
I love this photo of Jack shaking hands with his church pastor.
And this photo of Thomas eating spicy chicken wings.
And this one of Ellie. She's beautiful even when she sweats.
The next 2 days went by in a flash, and before we could blink, it was time.
I got Rich to take a photo of me and my little boy.
And then we left for the airport. I cried the whole way.
We got out of the car and I looked at Jack carrying his things. What you see is all he took to China: a carry-on suitcase and a backpack. He will be gone for 10 months.
We made it to the hallway just outside security, and waited. The little kids ran around and played. I don't think the reality of Jack leaving had really hit them yet.
Then some of Jack's friends showed up. It was perfect. They lightened the mood, and got Jack, Rich, and I smiling. :)
Did I mention Jack has wonderful friends?
But the clock kept ticking, and we had to say goodbye.
Savannah (she has autism) had her La-La Loopsy Doll wave goodbye.
It began to sink in for Will.
Jack picked up his tiny suitcase and walked up to security to check in.
And my heart broke.
Jack made it to China after 30 plus hours of traveling and got all checked into his dorm. He starts official school stuff tomorrow.
This mama stuff is hard.