The Importance of Good-bye

The last ride last night.

My guys left for the airport a few hours ago. They both needed to get back home. I am staying in the US for another month with the girls.

Each time we leave a place we make sure that we and the kids get the opportunity to say Good-bye, especially with family. Yesterday was that day for them. Most of my siblings came over for supper. One even brought their horses and dog so Ge Ge could have one last ride. After 10pm, hugs were given and some tears were shed. It was hard to watch.

More Good-byes this morning. More tears. This time harder for me to watch. Last night the tears were going out the door with them, but this morning as they pulled away in my sister-in-law’s blue Durango I witnessed the heartache of my family left behind. A behind-the-scenes moment if you want to call it that. Watching my mother and nephew was gut wrenching.

I’d like to skip this process and just sneak out when the time comes in a month. Bypass the tears. Skip the downcast faces. Miss the awkward silences of trying to come up with another topic to talk about to avoid the final good-bye. It sounds like a good plan, but my family would be furious and I know that the process of “grief” is needed for both sides.

Closure is needed. I’ve known this and my husband has made it a high priority to make sure good-byes are said properly.

 Properly = Eye contact, hug/handshake, and the words “Good-bye, Thank-you, Love you” spoken when appropriate.

The winter of 2009 my father passed away and I saw the huge importance of saying Good-bye. The previous summer we had the opportunity to be in the US with them. We had no idea it would be our last with him.

Yesterday we went to the cemetery with the kids. Mei Mei broke down crying because she wanted to hug him, to tell him Good-bye. I was able to remind her that we did that when we saw him last. We prayed and asked God to give him a hug for us and to let him know that we loved him. My heart was heavy, but so thankful that we were intentional about saying “Good-bye” that final summer.

We can’t know for sure when life here on earth is over. People die in car wrecks, plane crashes, and illnesses everyday. For this reason, each time we return “home” I have made it a point to make sure that I and the kids let the people in our lives know they are loved and special.

Your Turn: Do you do anything special with family when you leave them to return “home”? Please share in the comments below.

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8 thoughts on “The Importance of Good-bye

  1. Pingback: Debunking the Excuse Rail – Part 1 | raisingTCKs

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