My trip to Utah was a blur. Seven days, six nights that were filled to overflowing. I wish I could have stayed longer. I should have stayed longer. Now I’m home and when I think about it, it’s all a little fuzzy.
I mostly remember my goodbye to my mom and dad. We were in Becky’s living room. My bags already packed and in the car. Miss B perched on my hip. Keys in my hand. Ready to go. And then it hit me.
I wasn’t going to see them again for over two years.
I don’t cry at goodbyes. But I did last Sunday. And I think I’ll cry again right now just thinking about it.
My mom and dad are moving to South Africa for two years to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ (as missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints) with those who live there. When I think of the sacrifice that entails, my heart bursts with pride. My parents are leaving what matters most in the world to them. They are leaving their 7 daughters, 3 sons, 7 sons in law, 1 daughter in law (and one soon to be daughter in law), and 35 (soon to be 36) grandchildren behind to go serve the Lord.
My mom is scared silly. Who wouldn’t be? My dad is her rock. They have each other and they are going to do amazing things. The Lord loves them and he will bless our family because of their service. I have absolutely no doubt of that.
But I’m going to miss them. They go to the MTC (Missionary Training Center) on June 6th. I’m going to miss the random texts from my dad. And the ability to call them anytime to ask advice or share my triumphs or disappointments. I’m already scheming on what it would take to visit Johannesburg in the next couple years. It should be easy other than the excessive cost of airline tickets.
My friend’s parents just returned from their mission this week. I remember when they left and it didn’t seem that long ago. So… here’s hoping my parent’s time goes just as quickly and that they love and embrace every minute of it.
Thank you Mom and Dad. Thank you for your example to all of us, especially to me and my children. Thank you for serving the Lord in spite of all the reasons why it would be easier not to. Thank you for facing your fears and relying on faith. Your strength, courage, and faith buoys me. I love you.