Alex in front of the sign that is no longer there. He sent this picture to us while he was in the MTC
(Missionary Training Center)
So the other night I had a dream that Alex came home. We were all so happy. He was happy and there were just a lot of smiles and hugs. I don't know why I had that dream. Maybe because Fred and I were talking about his mission the night before and I went to bed with it on my mind. Who knows? All I know is that it was the first time I have dreamed about him coming home since he left. I did notice on Sunday in our ward bulletin that he is the next boy to come home even though it's not until June. That was a little freaky when I realized that. The next morning I woke up to an email from my Missionary Mom's group I belong to and this video was attached. I watched it twice and bawled. I'm starting to tear up just writing about it. Why would I watch it twice right? I couldn't help myself.
As much as it's been easier to have Alex gone than it was Brandon & Ben, two years is still a long time and just recently I've been really missing him. Maybe that's another reason why I had that dream. It's been easier with Alex gone on his mission because technology has improved so much. He will send home pictures in his emails almost weekly. With my other boys we had to wait for months for pictures to come in the mail. It's great to be able to see him consistently. Salt Lake now allows skype for Christmas and Mother's Day calls. It is so wonderful to be able to not only talk to your son but actually see him where you can interact with him. It's also amazing to meet his companions that you will most likely never meet. We've also enjoyed meeting some of the members. We truly are blessed with the advancement of technology, but even with all of that you still miss your boy here and there.
The day we dropped Alex off. There were large crowds of families waiting to get their picture by this sign.
We have had three completely different experiences dropping our boys off at the MTC. Brandon's was different because the MTC was under renovations, Ben's was the norm until the norm changed (I really need to write down the differences in another post). The experience we had with Alex is the one they show in the video. This is now the norm for dropping missionary's off. They have you drive up and they direct you to a sign and a spot on the curb. You say your good bye at the curb and then your missionary walks away with another missionary who guides him to where he needs to go. I actually prefer this way to the old way. They allow you as much time as you want to say goodbye. You aren't competing with all the other weeping, wailing, laughing and talking of a room full of people. It's more intimate and private and I really liked having that time just to ourselves.
Us girls hugging Alex good bye. It really didn't hit me until we were on the freeway leaving Provo. You can see the missionary helping Alex patiently waiting in the background with Alex's silver/gray luggage.
This video made me sad that we never took a video of Brandon or Ben and that we never took one of Alex when we dropped him off. When Brandon & Ben came home we were all just so excited that we were lucky we remembered to even take pictures! The thing I don't like about taking a video at certain events is that I feel like I miss out on the moment. I think I will be happy just to get pictures of Alex unless we can talk someone else into taking a video for us. For now, I can enjoy this video and know that that I have experienced this twice before with my boys and I look forward to that sweet reunion again with my Alex. We are so proud of him and the service he is rendering. We are proud of the man that he has become. We are stronger in our faith because of his service and example to us. Alex I love you more than words can express!!!
Love your Mum xxxxooo
Alex & President Rees. President Rees set him apart to be a missionary the night before he was to enter the MTC. President Rees was his Stake President while he was a student at the University of Utah. He is also a former mission president.
All of our family who were able to attend the setting apart. We wish Ben & Kira could have been there but it's hard when everyone gets married and moves away.
Lunch at the Brick Oven before entering the MTC.
Alex & his MTC district all pointing to where they will be serving.