my journey begins

28 Jul

dear everyone,

today i begin my journey across the atlantic ocean and to africa for a six month trip to serve my unit and my country. everyone knows the incredible amount of emotion i feel on a daily level, but this is all something different. i was determined not to cry today (after letting it all out last night to the resilient and sweet christopher) when i said goodbye to my mommy, brother, and christopher at the airport, but of course, that did not happen.

we decided the best way was for them to go through the security line with me, to maximize time, and then duck out before i actually went through the screening. so, we finally began our goodbye hugs and kisses, all with the rest of the line-dwellers standing around us. classic us. they all dip under the fabric line markers and go away waving and blowing kisses, as they retreated towards the exit my wonderful farewell party continued to wave and i kind of started saying “go! please” with my mouth and hand gestures since i knew i was reaching the point where if i looked at them leaving for one more second i would burst into tears. a sweet old lady beside me said, “they’re having a hard time letting you go!” and the other people smiled at me understandingly, it’s always hard to say goodbye. and at that point, my mom put up her phone to take a picture and i began to cry. unashamedly i wept, and turned away from my empathetic line friends. and out of the corner of my eye, a TSA agent came over and handed me a handful of tissues, wordlessly and compassionately.Β 

at the security check, where my ticket and id were evaluated, the security guard said the routine “thank you for your service.” but in a unique twist of events, the whole line at RDU had seen the personal level of service and love that accompanies every serviceman and lady.Β 

i’m proud to serve my country, and lucky in this instance that my deployment is only six months long and to a unique location that is out of the spotlight, instead of a lot of my friends serving longer, and more dangerous tours. but regardless of the circumstances, leaving behind those who love and support me is definitely going to be the most challenging part of this journey.

i love my family and friends so much. but the time has arrived for me to be a little more selfless, and answer the call.

xoxo,
annie

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One Response to “my journey begins”

  1. Barbara Ashley July 28, 2013 at 2:05 pm #

    You will do great things and I know I am very proud of you. My heart hurts for your family. I am so glad that you have such an awesome support team. Your mom bakes the best cookies, so I know you will get good care packages. :)
    Be safe!!

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