Goodbyes suck. I’ve never had one that was much fun. Unless, of course, you count the dates I’ve been on where I wanted to stick a red hot poker in my eye just to end it early. Those were excellent goodbyes.
I think goodbyes are there to teach us stuff. I will belligerently share with you that I never asked for any of these life lessons. I thought I was pretty awesome without them.
I’ve learned that moving on doesn’t necessarily mean moving up. There are lots of things and people I would rather hang on to. Our lives are less full when we lose them, and we are often left to wonder about the fairness of things.
Life’s a bitch, and goodbyes are a good reason why.
Saying goodbye to my one and only child at her dorm room door almost killed me. Well, okay, maybe I’m being a tad dramatic, but it sure felt like a death sentence. In a way it was. My life was never the same. Neither was hers. It all ended well, we both grew up (she more than me) and we grew closer to each other. Each time I see a mother bird tending her nest full of babies, I make it a point to stop and talk to her about her upcoming heart break. Just my way of helping mother-nature out.
When I had to put down my cat, Figaro, I gave him a long last hug, the kind of hug you give when you know you won’t ever hug again. I thanked him for all that he gave me and for standing by me through thick and thin. And then he was gone. It broke me. I think we lean on our pets because they give us so much and ask for so little in return. It’s a pretty easy relationship to get use to … unless you want it with a human. I still begrudge that goodbye.
Saying goodbye to my dad, leaving the room where his casket lay, was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I knew I would never be in the same room as him again. I didn’t want to leave. That goodbye is with me every day. An unwelcome memory of a life ended too soon.
Saying goodbye to my 25 year marriage was tough business. Of course, so was the marriage. It was the right thing to do, and I have no regrets, but it still feels like my biggest failure. I learned a lot during the marriage. I’m still not sure what I learned from ending it, but I’m sure it’s brilliant!
We all have different stories, but we will all end our road with a bucket full of goodbyes. Personally, I think we could all use more hellos.
I’ve learned to embrace the goodbyes in my life, mostly because I have no choice. But also because I began to notice that with every single one of them, there is a new beginning of sorts. A vacancy left to be filled with new meetings, loves, adventures and opportunities … and undoubtedly more goodbyes.
I did not come to this conclusion gracefully, but I guess all that matters is the acceptance of it all. I am working on my attitude, and it will improve … any day now.
They say that there are only two things in life that are certain: death and taxes. I say there are three: death, taxes and goodbyes. If you’ve figured out a way to live a full life and avoid any of these … be sure to drop me a line, won’t you?