|| I Promise This Isn't Goodbye||

I know what goodbye feels like.

Heavy, tense and unpredictable.

Awkward, uncomfortable or just unfortunate.

You're never ready for them but they always seem to find you. It's as if someone started pulling on your heartstrings and changing the melody all without your permission. I know what goodbye tastes like. Like the words you didn't have the courage to say before time split your paths in two. Taste like the perfect mix of nostalgia and yet the salty sweetness of what could come next. I know goodbyes. That pen pal that always writes you love letters and you just can't find the words to write back. Goodbyes are handholds and finger slips all at one time. And as pretty as we write them, even though they suck, they are not as permanent as our tears make them seem.

Here's the thing about goodbyes that we never see while in the midst of them-inevitable, hard and beautiful growth. Growth that helps us know the difference between a page turn and a "the end.” Goodbyes have mastered the ability to say, "Oh honey, this is not the end. This is barely the beginning." The growth to become, to change, to mold, to let that person or place be a part of your story in the way that they were supposed to.

What if we saw goodbyes as more of a thank you?

Thank you for staying as long as you did. Thank you for the person you helped me become while you walked with me. Thanks for the questions or the answers, the guidance and all of the above. Thank you for letting me call your four walls home, thank you for holding my secrets. Thank you for letting me leave my footprints on your map lines.

You see after graduating almost two weeks ago now (whoa), I've been waiting for the goodbye that would separate me from Southern California. And it hasn't happened yet, that very strong sense of "baby girl it's time to take that step forward" and I am, but I thought it would be in a different direction. A direction back to NorCal, finding my rhythm of life there again with five years of change, memories and people tucked in the pockets of my suitcases.

Maybe that's something else - we sometimes give goodbyes too much grief, too much angst. Sometimes we make goodbyes happen because we're afraid, because goodbye seems easier than, "step aside, please make room for me because I'm not going anywhere." And then we hope and pray we’re not an inconvenience, a liability or unfortunate adjustment in someone's life.

I nanny a little boy a few times a week (which if you’ve seen my snapchat or Instagram you know him well) and he loves saying "buh-bye" occasionally topped  off with a blowing of a kiss that's never really in your direction but you get the general idea. I think goodbyes should be more like that sometimes, maybe a little less sad, a little less permanent. A goodbye that dares to be a little bit sassy and almost effortless more like a "buh-bye" which really means, I’ll see you next time you walk through these doors and if you don’t come back, then I’ll throw a kiss in your direction and hope you take it with you.

Goodbyes are ambiguous suckers sometimes aren't they?

But they are still filled with Gods grace and the potential for what could be.

They are page-turners, not the end of the book because I desperately want to hold onto the idea that the story dear one, ah it's barely just beginning.