Forgive me if I seem to be a little self-indulgent by continuing this, but it's all been swirling in my head for a long time and it is cathartic to get it out here. And, hey, it's my blog!
I do let some optimism re-assert itself here, though, so read on.
I think I pretty well hinted at this in my last blog post, but I'll say it flat out: I like my friends and am sad to leave them.
And, I flatter myself, they like me and are sad to see me go.
We have known for quite some time, now, that a parting is coming, but to dwell on it and discuss it every moment we're together seems like not a lot of fun.
I have tried not to say things like "Well, this is the last time..." or "This time next year..." or "You'll be doing this without me next time..." I have tried not to burst into tears every time I see a friend and mope all over her. I did that when we told people we were leaving, but I've held it together since then.
But I have wanted to. Oh, have I wanted to!
Everything feels tainted by the knowledge that soon things will change. I hate change. Ask my family and they'll tell you, I hate change. I'm okay with little changes like haircuts and new glasses, but changes like this? No, thank you.
But, of course, things must change. One way or another, things will change.
And we can see already that some of the changes will be good.
One very good change will be living closer to family. We'll be about 5 hours from my family and 8-ish from John's. Close enough to get together for holidays and special occasions, far enough that no one drops in unexpectedly and finds my house a wreck.
(It's bad enough when I know they're coming. Just think if I didn't know they were coming!)
After we visited a couple of churches and toured the Christian school in Philly when we were there in March, we all felt like perhaps there were some good things for us in this wild, uncharted territory.
I tell the kids - and try to convince myself - that God is already there ahead of us and has good things planned for us.
And sometimes I even believe it.