Goodbyes, Oh so Hard

 

I never thought saying goodbye would be so hard.  It wasn’t hard when I left for college, and it wasn’t too hard when I left to study abroad. But, for some reason it has been super hard this time around.

Saying good-bye to my best friends from high school wasn’t easy.  One of them is getting married when I am serving and I won’t be able to make it back to see her become a married woman.  My other high school friends are following their dreams and I dive into mine.

My friends from college—most are off doing the things they love—but the ones still grounded in Arkansas, I was able to say good-bye. How do you say good-bye to the loved ones that have supported you through thick and thin the past four years? I am not very good at good-byes.  How do you say goodbye?  I love to joke and say: “see you soon.”  Realistically for the majority of my support system, I won’t see them for a long time.

Some tell me that they will come and visit.  I know full-heartedly that some will, and some won’t.  It’s a reassurance they love to give and I love to receive.  To know that there is light at the end of the tunnel makes me feel so much better. 27 months is a long time—but not as long as it seems.  I’ve been told that I shouldn’t concentrate on the time because it will eat me alive, but how can I not when everyone asks me, “How long is this?” “Wow, that’s such a long time!”  As if I didn’t know what I was signing up for.

My two best friends in the entire world that currently live in Arkansas were the absolute hardest to say goodbye to.  I know one will visit, and it will be the visit I look towards during my first 9 months of service and the other, I hope, I can only hope.

As I get older, I understand the meaning behind the word nostalgic. When I was younger, I didn’t understand the idea behind looking at the past and truly painfully missing it. Now, I look back at my college career and truly savor the moments. I love how my mind only remembers the good, the wonderful, and the amazing from college. While I visited in Arkansas, I slowly learned how much these loved ones mean to me. My heart aches for when I will be with them again.  Where I can cuddle up next to them and know I can be myself, no one else.

As I travel back to Colorado, I know my few days with my parents will be painfully stressful. I will wonder what I have signed up for and also remember the only reason I became who I am—my wonderful parents.  Saying goodbye to them has never been challenging. My mother strategically has made me a free spirit always encouraging me to follow my dreams: from gymnastics, to basketball, to field hockey, to teaching, to studying abroad, to now, joining the Peace Corps.

I will spend a couple whirlwind days in DC and Baltimore with my sister and two of my friends I studied abroad with in Ghana. How fitting is it that I get to spend my last moments with all three people that were with me in Ghana—my wonderful sister visited me while I was there.

With choked up tears and searching for my bravery—somewhere inside of me.  I say, Pree-yat-no (which is goodbye in Macedonian).

My journey this summer from New Hampshire, to Georgia, to California, to Colorado, to Arkansas has been a blur, but a blur where I have learned so much about myself and others. Wish me the best and send me love through letters, packages, and simply texts or messages on my google voice number.

 

As I say from departing my loved ones: LTD, Live the Dream, and I am living it!

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2 thoughts on “Goodbyes, Oh so Hard

  1. So beautiful Kelly. I can definitely relate. These goodbyes have been more difficult for me than the first time I left for college and study abroad combined. They’re the most important though because they let me know that when I come home, I can fearlessly live wherever I choose knowing I’ll cope and be okay. I’m grateful to have these growing pains early in life. They’ll make us better women. I’m so proud of you and happy for you! See you in 2 days!

  2. My Dearest Love,
    I am a little choked up at the moment. It really seems surreal that in a few short days I will no longer be able to call you about the crazy kindergarten moments I am having (btw: I had a hair cutting incident on friday). You are set for the adventure of a lifetime and you will definitely dive in head first! If you ever feel like you are drowning…remember, I am a certified Lifeguard and I am here to help 😉
    But in all seriousness, I am going to miss your face and your positive outlook on life! I will talk to you soon and I will see you in approximately 10 months!!!
    Lots of Love,
    The other last Hendrix Early Childhood Education Major

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