“Never can say goodbye, no, no, no, no, now…”
Nobody likes good-byes.
If there’s somebody going away—someone we love enough to show up for the Bon Voyage—that’s pain. Even now, I remember my top three heart-wrenching departures: to a different city from Dad; Grandma’s unsuccessful surgery; my daughter’s wedding.
On the other hand, if someone’s “shoving off”, but (let’s face it) we don’t expect to be any the worse for it—yeah, about that—we usually aren’t even present for the parting. A neighborhood Minute Mart grand opening (free corn dogs) holds the trump card.
In a few days I will say good-bye to someone I’ve grown quite fond of. She promises to visit—but, well, if experience is the best teacher, I’m not sure I should leave the light burning.
The word “goodbye” is a dreadful word; it sounds so final. But the classic substitutes don’t buffer the blow: “Farewell.” Really? The fact that the person is leaving our circle of influence begs the question: How could they possibly fare well? [Ponder the Pompousness of that Pithy Platitude.]
As I remember various goodbyes, whether I blew them a kiss, or cried myself to sleep, I give thanks. (Mostly for cell phones!) But yes, it’s a rich blessing to consider the awesome thing that happened: we got to know this fearfully and wonderfully made personality for awhile. They brought something to the equation; hopefully, we brought something to theirs. And in some miraculous way, this connection shifted our paradigm. It might even be the bend in the road that changed a trajectory.
And—if there is love—it isn’t really adios. We might just pass this way again. (‘Funny how that happens.) And, in each of us, if there’s faith [sincere Christian faith], the hiatus is temporary; a hiccup in eternity. We “never can say goodbye.”