We then all left to go to Sizzler and eat. Now mind you 4 out of 5 of us were still slightly feeling the ramifications of the stomach flu from the past week! So all I could do is "worry" that Riley would enter the MTC and rebound with the flu again! We all got our food, most everyone couldn't eat and Riley ate about two bites because he was finally showing some signs of being nervous! I on the otherhand ate all of my lunch, and yes, dessert! Because when I'm sad, nervous, happy, depressed or any emotion whatsoever, I am blessed with the ability to still eat!
The drive to the Provo Temple was too short! We arrived and took some pictures and gave our last hugs and kisses goodbye! We waited for a couple of Riley's friends to come and took more pictures. As a mom, you get this knack of reading body language, etc... in your kids. I could just feel the anxiety building in Riley. I asked him what he needed and he just said, "Mom, it is time to go, I just need to be there," And so we did.
The fun part of this story is that we took a little longer at lunch, waited a little long for friends, took a wrong turn to get into the MTC and had to turn around and get in a long line of cars to enter, the man directing traffic took a minute with us to just chat it up, we finally turned left and was guided down the row until we were directed into stall number 18! This was significant to us as the change of age to 18 in General Conference, marked the moment Riley decided to Go and serve a mission as soon as he could! So at 18 years of age, Elder Riley Hansen was dropped off in stall 18. He gave us all a hug and kiss goodbye! I told him to "Stand Tall" and I love him! He turned and walked away with another missionary and never looked back at us. But, I watched him all the way, and it comforted me to see him laugh and smile as he turned the corner! He was finally where he wanted to be!
We felt the Holy ghost comfort us and bring us peace all the way home and for several days after. It was an amazing feeling. We still receive that comfort when we are careful to not let the outside world creep in too much. We have felt many blessings since Riley has left. We feel great joy in his letters and emails and he has expressed the great comfort of the Gift of the Holy Ghost that he feels daily.