I would love to put to rest the idea floating around that claims saying goodbye is simple. Ideally, I’d love to stand on a podium with a bullhorn and a foam finger, chanting at these people, telling them they are wrong.
Sometimes friends don’t settle into your hearts. I’ve met plenty of people who have entered and departed my life without even the slightest of goodbyes. A significant amount of my acquaintances blur together, drifting in and out of my days without conversation or depth. These characters, however minimal, are crucial. They stand as beacons of normalcy, they represent the culture and times we so evidently inherit. They serve as speakers for a lifeless, relationally exempt world.
I want to remind you of something you know in your heart. There will be many glorious humans who will walk into your life, stand before you, look you in the eyes, and take your hand.
Sometimes these people will be quiet and steady, present and wise. Sometimes they will nudge you on and urge you to pick up the pace or slow down every once in a while. They will keep you moving up and down the spectrum, allowing you to both raise your hands and hold on tight during the rollercoaster of your life. Some friends will grab your hand with a fervor you’ve yet to encounter. These people have hearts that have been set aflame, and their fire is contagious. Being engulfed by their presence is a gift.
The trick, the tug, the pull that will both sustain you and tear you apart, is the truth that these particular people will be temporary. Their companionship is fleeting, the greatest of loves grow just as quickly as they dissipate. Don’t be discouraged by this. Don’t be disheartened or weary from having to say goodbye. Missing someone and being missed, is an honor.
I don’t want to be surrounded by a sea of people whom I am comfortable with because I know their company is anchored where I am. I prefer to be pushed by friends and encounters and loves that drive me to wonder at the extraordinary creation of mankind, the diversity in it, the mess and redemption in it.
My heart is weakened each time I say goodbye to someone who has directly spoken to my heart, someone who has reached out to grab my hand. It’s a terribly beautiful experience and I desire it more, the more often it occurs.
I vow to trust the journey enough to say goodbye over and over again. The hard, messy, ache in my soul kind. I vow to believe there is always more to learn from new relationships, to have enough courage to unclench my fists, and to leave just enough room in my heart, for every encounter.
To you, my loves.