I knew this day was coming. I knew that I would be sending my wife and daughter off to the Philippines and wouldn’t see them for two and a half months. We joked that with all the extra time I’d get better at Fortnite and it’d be a vacation for the both of us. Last night though it really sunk in. I saw all the luggage packed, the empty closet, the printed airplane ticket all right there. I wanted the three of us to go out to dinner last night together before we left but it was already 10 pm before all the finishing touches were made for the trip. We stayed up and talked a little bit before it was finally time to go to bed.

I noticed the lights turn on at around 6 am. Daya was already awake, excited as a child on Christmas morning. We didn’t need to leave the house until 8 so I asked her if we could go to breakfast before we went to the airport. She said she’d love to so we got ready.

After a wonderful time together at the restaurant, we made our way back to the airport. The whole way I could feel myself choking up whenever it came to talking about leaving. This is the first time in five years we’ve ever been apart for longer than a weekend. Gosh, I thought I’d handle it better than I was. Of course, this is a HUGE trip for Daya, a much deserved and much needed one. She hasn’t seen her family face to face since June of 2014. I couldn’t be happier for her and her family too for that matter. They are going to adore little Isabella when they meet her. Her spunky little personality is sure to get a lot of attention.

Once at the airport I helped get their checked bags loaded and we made our way to the TSA Pre-Check. Side note: If you haven’t paid the $85 for that service (expires in five years), you are missing out. If you’ve ever dealt with the regular security line at Seatac you know how painful it can be. Not TSA Pre-Check. Less than five minutes from start to finish. I digress.

We hugged and kissed for the last time at the TSA gate. Once Daya and Izzy were on the other side of the security checkpoint we waved to each other and I could feel the tears welling up in my eyes. I knew it was time to high tail out of there.

I drove home in time to be able to have a FaceTime call with them before they boarded. Then, at 12:40 they were getting on the airplane. Again, I was hit with a rush of emotion and just decided that I needed to keep moving to keep my mind busy. I can say now that the downstairs is spotless, mail is shredded, dishes are done and there is no laundry to do. I don’t want to play Fortnite. That was just a joke and I always use humor to hide my sadness.

The truth is, as I think about how sad I am it makes me feel good in a way. Marriage is hard no matter who you ask and we’ve had our moments too. This is that sobering moment to show me what life could be like if Daya wasn’t in my life anymore and it’s safe to say, I couldn’t picture myself without her. She’s brought so much happiness into my life that I’ve never had before. Then she gave me a miniature version of herself in the form of Izzy and I already miss hearing her high pitched scream when she hears me come home from work.

This is a damn good reminder that this family I have is the best thing I’ve ever had. When we have Cassidy in the summers is when we feel the most complete but when it’s the three of us we fill this home with as much love as it can handle. My goodness, people. I miss my girls. Again though, I’m so grateful that they got to make this trip. In due time I’ll be down there to meet them but until then it’s back to how it was when I met Daya for the first time nearly seven years ago and we skyped daily. This heavy dose of sadness I’m feeling though only tells me that I found the right one and I’m so blessed to know we have the rest of our lives to spend together.

Here are some pictures Daya shared with me. She asked if I could make more videos for Izzy’s YouTube page so at least I’ll be busy doing stuff like that. Thanks for letting me be honest.