April Showers, May Farewells



May is a goodbye month in the circles I run in.

I found myself dreading it as the skies turned blue and flowers popped up in my yard, because separation was as sure a part of the spring as the daffodils.

It’s funny, isn’t it, that when you watch graduation caps tossed in the air,  no one ever seems to see them hit the ground again.

Like their owners they are uprooted.  They are free.

The goodbyes came fast on each other’s heels  this year, like kids playing tag on a summer night, bumping and crashing and overlapping.

Every goodbye is a sunset.

The anticipation and the suspense far outweighs the actual event, the sun slipping   behind the waves, the beloved stepping into a car and driving away.

It is over in an instant and then you are left a little hollow, your voice echoing in the long hallways of a body alone.

I am learning to leave space for the emptiness that follows the fullness.

I am learning to be grateful for music even when it is silent.

As a  knock-kneed four year old  I would cling to my mom’s jeans at preschool, afraid of facing the day without her.

A part of me would still like to hold on that tight to the people I love.

But I am realizing

Goodbyes tear us open, and maybe in the process they show us parts of ourselves usually kept hidden.

They show us just how strong are the ties that bind us, stretching out from my exposed heart across wide oceans and long highways.

When my love is unraveled like a spool of thread, I see just how long it is.

I am not afraid of goodbyes any longer.

There is space in the chambers of one heart to hold the whole world.

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