Small Constants

Troy keeps nudging me to write something. Honestly, I haven't had the emotional or mental energy to even begin to process everything, and it just seemed pointless to write anything fluffy. Frankly I don't have fluffy in me right now.

Every summer, we have to say goodbye to people in our community, and it's never fun. This year however, it has beaten the snot out of me. It's partly because I have had more significant relationships with the people who are leaving. And I think it's partly because this past year I have had more of myself to give away, more to invest. Which is great, but it makes the letting go that much harder.

This morning the church bells rang at their appointed hour, and I found them strangely comforting. I always love them, marking the rhythm of our days, calling me to prayer even though I don't walk over to attend mass. But today they reminded me of small constants in my life.

It's a hard lesson to learn, and one I don't embrace fully, that sometimes, in order to grow new friendships and relationships in life, God has to remove some, at least from our immediate vicinity. Perhaps, if I were able to keep these significant people in my life, I would miss opportunities not only to be blessed, but to bless people who I have yet to meet. Or maybe deepen relationships I already have. Living this life is a constant struggle of being willing to know and be known again, even when running the risk of having to say goodbye to that person in six months. Hard not to say "Hi, what's your name and HOW LONG ARE YOU GOING TO BE HERE?"

I don't know, but I feel raw around the edges, and tears are just below the surface, jumping out and then subsiding with all the energy of a jack-in-the-box but with none of the gleeful hilarity.

Our kids just finished two years at Numont, and I am almost stunned that our time there is over, in what seems like the blink of an eye. I find myself ridiculously emotional about it.

I have learned in life that it's necessary to do the hard and unpleasant work of grieving, even when it seems more painless to just ignore it. So when it hits me that Mary won't be around on Tuesday night, not because she's had a busy week, but because she moved to San Diego, I will try and give myself the space to grieve. And when I'm longing for a coffee with Mona, to see the twinkle in Paul's eye, and to call Jonathan Wonder Boy even though it annoys the heck out of him, I will have to just sit with the loss.

Hopefully it's a lesson I can help Meg learn as well. She is already on her way, with frequent comments of "I will miss my friends" and plans to invite them over so those ties are not broken. We tell her that it's OK to be sad.

Hopefully I'll be back to posting more regularly soon.

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