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Why Goodbyes Are So Hard

If there would be any way to describe how the past week has felt, numb would be up there. There was no real "low point", in fact there was a lot of positive moments and good times had, even including helping move 40,000 pounds of frozen chicken by hand . But what do we do when we feel that pit in our stomach, knowing we can't stop the march of the inevitable. In their case, that thing I can't stop is the fact my time here is drawing to the end. I can see the curtain falling, but yet, I'm still in my first act here.

But the show must go on I suppose.

I have said it already but this is what I need. This internship has taught me so many lessons, but the one that is going to be the most gritty and painful is learning how to walk away with grace. How to say goodbye to the life I have created for myself here in Sandstone, Minnesota. How to redefine the relationships I have made here. Going from spending everyday with these people, all of which I can now gladly call friends for a lifetime, to being there from a far. Life for me is changing, and thru the window of my phone and fragments of life I gather from social media a piece of me will be torn up from the lack of my presence. If anyone has FOMO (fear of missing out), it is most definitely me. I find comfort in navigating the paths around work, greeting each resident by name (if I can) and understanding the dynamic challenges presented when working in the media department where the stars are cats of all sizes. There is a camaraderie of walking into work and having the morning meeting, working hard and then finishing a busy day. The small moments of walking out with your boss, saying see ya later, and hitting the road are ones that are ingrained on my experience here.

From the perspective of my future career path, I may be put on extended assignments that reflect in this way. I must learn how to walk away with grace, feeling satisfied, not hungry for more time. Thankful for the moments that occurred and I was a part of, not jealous of the moments I will miss and hear about second hand. I have learned to keep my eyes wide open, keep myself in the moment, allow an open mind, and most of all to truly hear the words with my heart and not my ears.

My best friend from college, Mel, came and camped with me on the weekend. It was a meeting of my worlds. The life I left behind that I would soon return to in the heartland was meeting the new adventure that has unfolded under the arms of pine trees and open Minnesotan sky. So thankful for our friendship and her willingness to drive 8 hours to experience this adventure with me that she had only heard about over FaceTime and through texts.

I was more than happy to show off the best that Duluth had to offer. Street tacos at Little Annies, a walk to the Canal Park Lighthouse, the breathtaking view of Split Rock Lighthouse after the scenic north shore drive; just to name the highlights.

In case no one has told you, Lake Superior is always cold. But standing ankle deep in the crystal clear water, laughing about God only knows with the person who I spent every day working on class projects with was so surreal. Mel and I started the summer on a marketing job assignment in Florida and ended it here. Surreal.

I have to not let the cloud of self-pity for an event that has yet to occur to dull out the times I do have left here. Maybe it will be a whisper in the moment that makes me realize why the pain of leaving was worth the memory, as someone close to me put it so well.

I said that I felt I was only in the first act here, but the reality is, maybe I am only in the first act of whatever has been awakened in me this summer. In the light of a world pandemic, great division in our country and tumultuous times we live in, I have had a dang good summer. I felt like I was going to be walking away from the life I started here, but who says I can't fit it in my suitcase and bring it back to Kansas with me?

I was told by someone in the industry that we always have something to learn from each persons story, and I am beyond thankful that I was honored with even a sliver of these peoples stories. I am more thankful that I was allowed to be inked in on their pages, even if only for a brief moment in this chapter of life.

Goodbyes are hard, thankfully this will be a see you later.

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