I despise the last day just like goodbyes. They aren't an easy roller coaster to ride. However they are inevitable and I was missing the Hanson six like a hole in my heart. I knew it had to happen but I like to prolong them for as long as possible. The family gathered around the table for breakfast. Loud. Crowded. Messy. That's us. I stood there making my cinnamon rolls and dishing them out, hugging everyone as they came in and I just soaked it all in. Creating mental notes of each and everyone of them.
It was a great last morning. Only thing about it was that it was the last. I knew by lunch time that it was time to pack up and say those words. Hug necks and explain to Gianna that Auntie LeLe wouldn't be running to her room to rescue her from her crib after nap time. Kiss my Mom and tell her "until next time". Love on Corynn and float words of encouragement to her because they fall easier in person. Smell Olivia's sweet baby smell and remember because next time I see her she'll have changed. All of that. Knowing in the back of my mind that the ride to the airport would be just as challenging with my Dad and brother. I climbed in and tried to keep the conversation going, no long pauses for tears. Then we were there. And it happened. What Jason and I knew would happen. What always happens when we have to say goodbye to Dad. He cried. He hugged me and didn't let go. I do the same thing. Then he hugged me again, just for good measure. There's something about those Dad squeezes. Letting go every time. You'd think by now we would be somewhat accustomed to the routine but we are not. It was bittersweet, like always. Saying goodbye yet knowing I was returning to my Things and Husband Jared.
A wonderful trip ended and memories made to last. I'm so very grateful for my time in California. When I saw those sweet faces waiting for me outside in Minneapolis my heart rose again and I felt complete.