We just spent a few days in San Antonio, Texas.
We missed out on the Alamo.
There wasn't time for the River Walk.
And I'm not sure how, but we ended up back in Germany without a bite of San Antonio Tex-Mex.
No, instead we spent our time surrounded by
ABU's, combat boots, and dress blues.
Families, banners, tears, and tap-outs.
Integrity, honor, pride, and service.
It was a very good time in San Antonio.
We're in a life-stage we've done our best to prepare for.
We've discovered words written, read, or spoken often aren't enough, though.
Some things you just have to live to know.
You can't be told how to face off with your son,
receive his salute, and release the man.
How to sit beside him, understand you've done your job,
and accept it's not the man by your side you can't get close enough to,
but the four-year old you want to hold tightly just one more time.
And he waits, in the beginning,
for the first sighting of his brother.
The love of family is written in permanent ink~
"So proud of you!"
"So proud for you!"
"I love you young man!"
"Love you big brother!"
"I've never been more proud to wear the uniform!"
We can touch him. He who was ours first,
we can wrap our arms around for a moment.
And an elder rises, a man of
Two World Wars,
and most of the whole of the 20th Century,
his Pa rises to say
"I'm so proud."
We wait for the Parade and Graduation.
For the Red, White, and Blue.
Pa and Granny, they've traveled the miles to witness another son march forward into manhood.
Thomas Armstrong Benton
Little brothers wait, and now that he's gone they're not so little anymore. How did that happen?
And his big sister beams, dividing her joy down the middle, with pride for her brother and the welcoming to our family of the man who holds her heart in his hands.
Welcome, welcome, with love,
It begins, and I tear.
Strong men and women march by,
this cloudy day casting shadows of little boys and girls.
I am a mama after all.
And he's here!
And he's gone!
And it really was all too fast...every savored moment, all too fast.
You did well, Dad. I suppose I did too.
He knows he is loved.
We've arrived safely in our "new normal."
Emily and Thomas
Thomas and Benjamin
Thomas and Granny
So funny that I asked for this picture and made myself cry because of it. I became a mom with these two. This was the first time I'd let my mind light on the fully opened bud ~ these two have bloomed.
Thanks Thomas, for taking me gently through another first as a mom. I know how to be a military wife. Be patient with me as I learn how to be a military mom.
We celebrate the son, the man, the airman.
"Off we go, into the wild, blue yonder,
Climbing high, into the sun..."
Always remember, we aimed you centered on Christ.
We look forward to watching you climb higher into the Son.
We look at this Son and see the God who cannot be seen. We look at this Son and see God's original purpose in everything created. For everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank after rank after rank of angels - everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him. Colossians 1:15-16
Thanks for sharing our TX trip, Favored One. May your journey be filled with the celebration of life too.