Last night, I got to attend a farewell-for-now party for one of my newest friends in NYC. It was the third such farewell in four days; the sixth farewell in the last month. The goodbye party is a NYC staple - this city is a beautiful revolving door.
Goodbyes are hard but necessary.
Getting to see so many people prepare for and make graceful exits, I can't help but contemplate the nature of goodbyes. Why does it take a promise of prolonged absence for some folks to get their stuff together? At each goodbye, there is a reconciling of sorts, both within the person leaving and those surrounding him/her. There's a conscious decision to create a marker, of sorts, and assess where we all are at that particular moment.
If you can say goodbye, you should. It's the ones you couldn't say that you'll regret the most.
Each goodbye party I've gone to recently has been just that, a party. It's been people leaving to make bold, new choices in their lives and venture off into bigger and better things. Each event has been filled with love and laughter. They've been good and I am thankful. I recognize that there are times when goodbyes aren't so easy, or clean-cut, joyful, or planned. Some goodbyes are permanent. Some are sudden. All are hard.
In the next few weeks two of my closest friends will be leaving the city and I will miss them terribly. They join the ranks of many more who are off to new adventures. To all of you, near and far, I'm happy to know you and to have shared space with you, no matter how briefly. Travel safe now and always. Drop me a line when you can.
ETA: I wrote this and then read my amazing friend Eleanor's blog about a similar subject. Read it too.