Monday, April 20, 2009

Thank You (part 1)

Bo is a dear friend who worked for The Mighty Hunter and is now in nursing school. I've attempted to help her with some of her classes (bless her heart!), and we've become very close.

Bo has 2 sons. That is them you see to the left, surrounded by the Service Flag graphic. Lucas is an Army MP and serving in Iraq. Chris is the younger. He is an Army mechanic and on active reserve duty, awaiting deployment later this year. I adore these two young men. I admire them as well.

Two weeks ago, Bo got a message from Lucas, saying that he would be home soon for leave. His approximate arrival was the 17th or 18th. I can't describe to you how excited she was - nor is it necessary to even say it. Just know that her enthusiasm is contagious, and I came down with a big case of it.

I cried several times, thinking of how wonderful the reunion would be. How beautiful our rolling ridges and mountains, lush in shades of green and spotted with the whites and pinks of Dogwoods would welcome him. How he would fill his belly with fried chicken and pinto beans and corn bread and countless other Southern foods. How being in a comfortable bed without fear of bombing or gunfire would rock him to sleep. How natural and foreign it would feel to talk to his brother and hug his mother.

I cried thinking how grateful I am that he has given himself to our country and our world for our safety.

Thursday morning I started checking my phone constantly for the text from Bo that would announce his arrival time. Only twice (ok, maybe three times) did I text her with the straight-forward message of "????"

Friday afternoon, I knew when I saw her on the caller ID that she had gotten the news: Sunday morning, 6:20am, Atlanta airport.

(here's a helpful aside for my fellow logistic/planning compulsives: Atlanta is on Eastern time. I live in Central time. Atlanta's airport is 2.5 hours away. The kids and I could go, but my cold would make the EARLY morning drive painful for me. The Mighty Hunter has Mariott points out the wazoo.)

A quick phone call to The Mighty Hunter, who was stuck in the airport in Memphis all day long, got him on the job of getting us a couple of rooms near the airport for Saturday night. Another phone call to Beboo determined that we would drive two cars so that Lucas and Chris could stay in Atlanta and have some brotherly-bonding time if they wanted.

After Opening Day for Sissy's softball season Saturday morning, I threw a change of clothes and necessary toiletries into a small purple suitcase. Emptied the Pimped Out Mamamobile of the amazing amount of junk that it had accumulated in the month since WDW. Bathed Sissy and dried her hair. Lay down and napped for 25 seconds (ok, maybe 30 minutes) until Lucky woke me with kisses (btw, pretending to be asleep and going bye-bye are the only ways to get kisses from him). Loaded the Pimped Out Mamamobile and left home. Realized I had $12 cash and the banks were already closed. Returned home to get cash out of emergency stash in the safe. Drove through the carwash to get the 3" of dead bugs and pollen off the windshield. Wished I had time to use the free super-vacuums to get the 2,815 cheerios out of the floor and seats. And drove to Beboo's house to meet Chris, Bo and Beboo and leave for the hotel.

Do you know that when you arrive at a Mariott and you're a Platinum Rewards member you get treated with a little better attitude?

The rest of our evening was...

A trip to Walgreens for poster board and markers and drinks.

A quick stop at Krispy Kreme. It's the law that you must stop when "hot and fresh" light is on, and I'm a law-abiding citizen!

A sad attempt at lettering and decorating poster board with a welcome home message.

A room filled with sleepy eyes but excited hearts and minds.

A clock that was screwy after Beboo tried to set the alarm for 4am, but instead changed the time to 4am.

At 3am I woke up, afraid that I would oversleep and be the cause of not greeting Lucas the minute he arrived.

... to be continued when I get the pictures from Bo.


Super B's Mom said...

I'm so exciting reading this!!! Hurry up and finish!!

Super B's Mom said...

So excitED.