Being far from family is very hard, particularly around holidays, birthdays, and milestone events. But we always know where they are and that we will see them again. It's different with the friends you make along your military journey. Pre-military, I don't know that I would have thought I could have a confidante in someone I'd met only a month or two earlier. In the military, everyone knows that you have to make friends fast or you don't make them at all. Even when you're stationed somewhere for 3 years, everyone you meet is on a different schedule, so you are constantly saying goodbye.
Sadly, we just had to say a goodbye to some wonderful friends we met and became close to here in Iwakuni. Despite it not being a new thing for me, it was terribly sad. But I feel the worst for Bennet. He's at the age now where he really has preferred playmates and this was his first real BFF. As of yet, I don't think he gets it. We talked to him about moving away and how we won't see our friends anymore, but I think the idea was too abstract. Perhaps over the next few weeks, when we don't go to their house or see them, it will sink in for him.
So for now we have a Tanya-Brian-Kirby-Addy sized hole in our hearts. But we hope that the military will bring us back together one day!