Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Leaving

When you were about ten, you started practicing. Off to camp for a week. Good-bye.

When you were thirteen, you practiced some more. Off to England for a summer. Good-bye.

When you came back, you started a new life at a new school, where you knew only three people: two girls who lived on your street and one girl from your grammar school. Good-bye grammar school people.

When you started college, you did the same thing. Good-bye high school friends.

You went to Italy for a semester. More practicing. Good-bye family. But you came back. Hello, again.

Then you transferred to a new university across the country. Good-bye again.

Then you came back for good. Good-bye college friends.

But then you got engaged and moved across the state to be closer to your love.

After a few months, you married. Good-bye maiden name. Hello, anonymous Johnson.

And you moved. Good-bye in-laws.

Then you moved again. Good-bye icky little town.

And again. Good-bye grad school. Hello hometown.

But then the job was sold, and the husband was laid off. You went to Michigan for more graduate school. But there is always an end to graduate school. You said good-bye to your dear friends and moved on.

Now you are here.

You have always left, always had one eye to the future, with little thought to what you left behind. Each time you leave, you miss your friends, and the familiarity of places and things, but time and circumstance have placed you elsewhere, so you move on. Friendships are forever, no matter where you are, right?

Now, the tables are turned. It is not you who is leaving. It is not you who leaves a hole. Time and circumstance have decreed this, and you accept it, but you wonder, what could possibly fill the gap they will leave behind? Who can take their place?

You can't imagine that anyone ever could.

Friendships are forever, no matter where you are, right?

1 comment:

  1. Friendships are absolutely wherever and forever. As proof, I offer our thirty-three years, to date, with only a few months ever living in the same town at the same time. Still, whenever we are together, I know we're home.