Saturday, March 16, 2013

Goodbyes Aren't Easy-16/31


  The March Slice of Life Challenge-hosted by Ruth and Stacey, at Two Writing Teachers - 16 of 31
Tweet at #Slice2013






      My son, daughter-in-law and grandson, Carter (nearly twelve) drove in from Texas a week ago last night for Carter’s spring break, and they drove out to return home in the dawn this morning.  How to say goodbye? 


       I make sure there’s a big pot of coffee so they can fill their cups. I heat up the cinnamon rolls for a quick, early breakfast.
       I ask my grandson about baseball and when his first game will be, about school events in the spring, and to have fun at the Jamboree.
       I tell my daughter-in-law best wishes for the coming very busy tax season. (She is a finance person and works with people on their taxes).
       I tell my son to have fun at the Jamboree this summer. (He is the head of the Boy Scout council where they live, and will be one of the leaders there.)
       I pet and pet their dog, a big Bernese Mountain dog whose absence will make the house seem pretty empty!
        I give more than one hug, and then they are gone.  I get busy, put in a load of laundry, open the computer to write.  I start my day.  
        I will travel with them all day until they call that they made it home. 

        Words and actions don’t come so easily when saying goodbye.

42 comments:

  1. You have, so eloquently expressed that sense that the simple things we do when saying goodbye are all we can do. Goodbyes are tough. I hope they come back soon for another visit.

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    1. Thanks Mardie-it'll be a while, but we are going to get together for a vacation later in the summer.

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  2. There was a tug on my heart while reading this. How hard that must be. There are three kids in my family, we all moved away but now two of us are back where we grew up - within a mile of my parents. One is three hours away. I can't imagine how hard it must be to live so far away. Gentle hugs going to you.

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    1. Thanks Katherine. I had them near for a long time, but careers pull & I knew they had to go. They miss it here too, so I try to help them have a great time while they're here.

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  3. Linda, this rings so true for me. Every time I say good-bye to one of our daughters, I have to immerse myself in some busy work knowing I too will travel will them until I hear they're home safe and sound. I remember writing about this last March - how I've become more and more like my grandmother who lived in Arizona and sobbed each time we left to come back to Ohio after visiting them. Like Katherine, hugs to you.

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    1. Thanks, Karen. The other part, like you, that I know is that we left too, on to new horizons, from our families. We wanted to try new things & chose to do it far away. I think of my mother every time, knowing how gritty she was when we left. No tears, just good wishes!

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  4. The specificity of your actions make my heart ache with your good bye.

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  5. You expressed it with such poignancy - saying goddbye is always hard. But so much so when it is your children (and grandchilren) who live far away.
    You made me think of my mom - and how she was always so calm when I left to return to teaching up north so many years ago. I asked her later why she didn't cry - when I did. She said she had to wait til I left. I know now that strength she showed. I haven't been as good as that.

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    1. I realize, although they want to be home, it is hard for them too, especially because of my husband, their dad & granddad. Sometimes it's important to be tough, but we all are sad. Thanks, Beverley!

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  6. I will travel with them all day until they call that they made it home.
    ...yes, and you will be with them still, as they go about their lives, for that is what love is like. So glad that you had this visit, Linda, and that you have many memories to cherish of your week together.

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    1. Thanks Tara. I think of you, & others, who have children 'away'. We want those adventures for them, but it doesn't make it easier.

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  7. I know your home felt empty with them gone! Their first visit to your new home? Love your words, "I get busy, put in a load of laundry, open the computer to write. I start my day." We keep on keeping on, no matter how preoccupied. I really loved your individual "connections," your individual goodbyes. This is lovely. Thank you for sharing.

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    1. Thanks Maureen-finally back after all the things I had to do today. I appreciate your comment.

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  8. A day of good-byes for me today too. Different good-byes. Yet my story is opposite to yours, because tomorrow I will be at home again, with my family. All of this is too confusing and I probably end up crying at some point. I wonder is it harder to leave or to stay behind. I always cry, so I haven' figuredit out. I hope that for you, the time to wait for a next get together is not too long.

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    1. You're right, Terje, you're off away from your family, & that is the same kind of goodbye feeling, I agree. I think I won't see this part of my family again until July or August-kind of a long while. Hope the conference makes up for being away.

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  9. Beautiful slice Linda. I have one back in the nest & one flying out come August. Not looking forward to the good byes...loved your details. Made it real.

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    1. Everyone seems to be in some kind of transition, I know. Thank you!

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  10. Good-byes like this aren't easy. I always feel like a piece of me is missing when I saw good-bye to my parents after spending time with them.

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    1. I know, & sometimes I wish we all lived in the same little town, just like it "seemed" to be in the old days, but we really don't want the old days back. It's such a world of change, isn't it? thanks, Stacey!

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  11. Goodbyes are hard, Linda, but it sounds like you will enjoy hearing about the exciting things they will be doing soon! I like the way you showed us the little things you do in your last few moments together. From your thoughtful comments to each person, it's obvious that you care so deeply about them.
    By the way, my husband's cousins have a Bernese mountain dog! Another connection!

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    1. The Bernese are such sweet dogs, although some people are a little intimidated. Thanks for your thoughts, Jennifer-feels good!

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  12. Sending hugs your way today Linda. It's hard to say goodbye to loved ones. Stay busy and hang in there!

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    1. Yes, I've been busy today. My husband is not doing well again, so I needed to be with him a couple of times, then meet my realtor to take care of some things for the sale of my house. Perhaps soon I can say goodbye to that! Thanks Robin!

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  13. "I will travel with them all day until they call that they made it home."

    This line embodies motherhood. Beautifully put.

    In each of your lines, I imagined a similar sort of feeling coming from each of your guests as they peeled themselves away from the embrace of your home.

    I hope they had safe travels!

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    1. Well, since I've been out much of the day, I have already gotten their call. They are home, & I hope I can have a good Saturday evening! Thanks so much Christy!

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  14. Yes, that is the hard part of living scattered. I tend to immediately do a wash, or we go out somewhere to kind of take our minds off the recent departure. Then, as you said, we travel with them in our minds. Now we even travel with them with texting as they tell us where they are. And the call when they get there, is strange too...almost like they never left their home...a good memory beginning to fade already.

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    1. Yes, we text too, & today, because my husband is ill again, it needed to happen more. They are there, & I know what you mean, it seems almost as if it didn't happen! Thanks Donna, & best to you tomorrow! I'm so pleased for you!

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  15. Goodbyes are never easy. Keeping them as normal as possible helps ease the longing. Your conversations, your kind gestures, your constant prayers. The perfect goodbye.

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    1. Thanks Michelle & yes, normal as possible helps for sure. I know you do this too!

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    2. That's why I like to say until we meet again. Good byes pull hard at the heart strings. Probably because I want to keep them close to me.

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    3. I like the idea of 'till we meet again' Ruth. Thank you for reminding me there are other words to use.

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  16. I dread the day Tuvia's grandchildren will return with their parents to Israel next year. Ugh...
    Loved reading your post tonight
    I will travel with them all day until they call that they made it home.

    Words and actions don’t come so easily when saying goodbye.
    Thinking of you
    Bonnie

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    1. Thanks Bonnie-you are dear to connect with this. Like others, we all have our stories, don't we? Shakespeare got it right so long ago: "Parting is such sweet sorrow." Although I don't believe he was thinking of these circumstances.

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  17. I love that you travel with them. I also love all of the heartfelt things that you do for them. What is it about filling cups with coffee that nurtures the soul so much? Nurture your own soul tomorrow!

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    1. Thanks Melanie. I guess doing an act is like an offer of love, to keep them knowing how much you care.

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  18. Saying goodbye is always, always, always so hard. This piece, with all its very vivid details, leaves me with a huge lump in my throat.

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    1. I know you've said a few goodbyes lately that were hard, too. And from the comments above, others have too. We all understand, Don't we? Thanks for this, Carol!

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  19. I understand this "traveling with them." It is hard not to. :)

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    1. Exactly, Betsy-one part of my mind is always there. Thanks!

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  20. I know the goodbye-process all-too well, and hope that yours ended with safe travels and a productive day for you. Keeping busy those first several hours seems to be some kind of therapy, doesn't it? For me, it's either that, or lay down and cry myself into a nap. I will admit, they have both been true before. :) blessings...

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    1. Thanks Jen-right now, so late, more than a nap sounds good, but I know what you mean. Getting to rest & a little pep makes everyone feel better.

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Having a conversation is a good thing!