[a week of good byes]

[a week of good byes]

The standard saying is “It’s ‘See you later,’ not a ‘Good bye.'”

But it still feels like one.

Sometimes you just started getting to know people and suddenly their short mission trip ends and hugs are exchanged and tears are shed, too. Everyone and everything has changed – unless you suddenly get amnesia you won’t forget the experience. New friends are made, old friendships are moving to a deeper level, and life is richer…

However, what do you do when you have to say bye to someone you knew most of your conscious life? Yes, they were not from your country originally (passport wise only – they have assimilated); yes, you knew that it might so happen that they won’t be here forever.

But when the day comes and you actually have to say the words and give one last hug… No hug is long enough to express the love you have. No language has the words that can describe the emotions.

The missionaries I grew up with are leaving. They have been here for 17 years. I am 26. I do remember time before them but very very dimly.

They seemed to always be there – the mountain of strength and the spring of joy.

The life will go on, but I sometimes feel like screaming: “How can it go on when the Skinners aren’t here?”

Last Sunday all five of them were sharing at the morning service. All mentioned that it wasn’t their desire to leave, but it was obviously God’s plan for them to move now.

God’s plan.

I have trouble with God’s plans somet– often. I have lived enough to know that one day I will see how God has planned it all and I will have my “Aha!” (or “Duh!”) moment, but until then it’s hard to get adjusted to changes.

Thankfully, they are not moving too far. But…

We’ve got new missionaries, too. One family is already here and another one is coming in a couple of weeks.

They are all nice… but I struggle with the idea of them being instead of the family I knew my entire life. In time we’ll get to know each other and we’ll get a relationship going too… But it does take time.

Anyway, I should be calling it a night since it’s already 1:20AM. Besides, thinking of Skinners leaving takes me out of my comfortable temporary denial of the fact that they are leaving this week. Denial, even temporary, is sometimes a very useful thing.

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