It's happened before and it'll happen again. I don't know why it has to be this way. It started when I was ten and I am well aware that it won't ever end - but that doesn't make it any easier or help me hate it any less.
Put simply - One of my closest, dearest friends is moving away. A long way away.
And it's going to hurt. A lot.
I'm going to have to cry because there's just no other way to deal with a goodbye this big. Twelve years worth of memories and inside jokes. Baby learning and kid raising. Hours and hours of just being together.
Sometimes I wish I didn't attach so strongly to people. That I could put up walls around my heart and protect myself from change. I get my world how I like it and I want it to stay that way. With an iron grip that only takes into account my perspective and what's best for me. Protect me. Do things my way. Be in my life the person I expect you to be.
She came to tell me in person. Thankfully I had already guessed the truth and didn't fall to pieces right there on the couch, making things all the worse. She's right to move. It's home. It's family. It's support she doesn't have here and it's the other half of who she is. I know all the reasons and every one of them is solid. She knows all the risks and cons - all of which have been weighed heavily and crossed off the list. Doesn't help my heart, but it sure does help my brain.
This family. How do I begin to describe them to you? Perhaps a list will do.
-they open up their home to anyone in need. Including us when ours sold. Can you imagine a family of five, taking in another family of five indefinitely?
-she flew to Boston with me for five days when our firstborns were about a year old, to be with our friend whose firstborn had just died of SIDS.
-he has fixed nearly every computer issue we've ever had
-she's who I call when I'm crying
-they gathered help and spent a weekend painting and updating our kitchen in hopes the house would sell
-they lead our Bible study, the one we've been a part of for over thirteen years
-she shares her girl clothes with Brenna and Carrie
-he enjoys a good theological discussion
-she let me borrow her grain mill, and already knew what I learned this past spring
-they are our homeschool link
-when we moved to this house, we moved 8 minutes from them, driveway to driveway
-I'm not sure there is much of anything that she and I haven't talked about
Are you getting the picture? This one's going to hurt. It's going to be balanced with the logic and knowledge of it being the right thing, but it's going to hurt. I've got a lot of trusting to do. I've got to know that God's got this one and that the huge hole that's about to tear, won't stay that way forever. Nor will my nose stay red and my eyes stay wet. I'll find that peace that passes understanding and I'll cling to it, searching high and low for every blessing He pours out and every mercy he shows me in the midst of my self-focused sadness.
The timeline is very much up in the air. They have to sell their house here first. In our market, that could mean anything from a week to a year. It's wildly unpredictable. In the meantime I must keep on keeping on. No walls. No shutting down and backing away to protect myself. It has to be real for the last months, just as it has always been.
For starters, they need a moving notebook, a set of colored Sharpies, and some packing tape. And I think I know just who should be in charge of giving that gift.