One of the most difficult tasks for the human heart to be engaged in is the act of saying goodbye to someone you love. Conjuring up the strength to say that powerful and heartbreaking word is often impossible for some, as “goodbye” seems to have a jagged edge quality about it that literally creates a lump in your throat and takes your breath away.
Of course, the emotional impact of saying goodbye is greatly influenced by the circumstances surrounding the departure. For instance, saying goodbye to a loved one going off to school is different than saying goodbye to a loved one going off to war. The emotional intensity of the goodbye accompanies the risk of never seeing that person again. Sometimes saying goodbye creates only a temporary heartache and a short-term interruption in life, while at other times, such as in terminal illness, it may literally be the last time you speak with that loved one. To make things worse, you may not have the opportunity of that goodbye, except within your heart.
The truth is that we all find ourselves saying goodbye to those who were significant in our lives from time to time. This sad truth is an inevitable fact of life and this is one of those things that does NOT get easier with practice. But one thing that the heartache of saying goodbye tells us is how important they were in our lives and how valuable they were in the days we shared. And the more significant their role was in our lives, the deeper the heartache and the greater the emotional intensity of the farewell.
Though this intense farewell is difficult, saying goodbye creates a powerful awareness regarding the value that others play in our lives. So, when you find yourself with that familiar lump in your throat and struggling with saying goodbye to someone today, don’t abide in the heartache and pain. Be grateful for this strong emotional reminder of just how precious and important loved ones are to the intimate fabric that becomes and defines your life! Think about how fortunate you are for having someone that makes it so hard to say goodbye.
Goodbyes are not forever. They simply mean “I’ll miss you until we meet again”.