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"All good things come to an end."
"Parting is such sweet sorrow."
The Long Goodbye...
As tried and true as these phrases are, there is a reason that they endure. Something humans are innately poor at is saying goodbye. We avoid it, we deny it, or we convince ourselves that it's just "see you later."
There is something final about goodbye. And our goodbyes build on one another throughout our lives. There is an aspect to parting that is akin to a loss. Perhaps its temporary in terms of timing, or more permanent. (By the way, loss doesn't have to equate to death, although those are very deep losses that we feel).
We lose something when we part ways. It might be company, memories, fun, or something else. Yet we also gain. Saying goodbye can mean emotionally paring down of who matters to you. And not all goodbyes must be sad or fill us with longing. Sometimes, we can't wait for goodbye (like leaving a job that we have not enjoyed, or family that we don't get along with). No matter the reaction, goodbyes are telling.
So why is it important to make a deal of goodbyes? For the superstitious there is the rationale that you might not see that person again. For the sentimental, it might be getting your feelings across. Both of these positions can be potentially vulnerable. Human beings don't seek out to be vulnerable. It's uncomfortable to say the least. I would argue that saying goodbye helps to neutralize feelings of loss and to normalize them. It allows us to practice being uncomfortable (even for a second) so that we have tools to call on when the goodbye is of a more permanent nature.
It is in the spirit of goodbye and wanting a definitive ending that I let you all know that this is my last post as a regular contributor for CurrentMom. I'm leaving open the possibility of being a Guest Blogger, but in looking at my schedule, I am unable to continue regularly blogging. I have enjoyed (as I hope you have) blogging and my forays into the blogosphere. Hopefully my words have been helpful in some way.
I wish everyone a peaceful holiday and a wonderful new year.