Saying Goodbyes

There’s so much rain lately in our part of the world. For us fire energies it seems a bit too much, a bit too watery. It’s hard to not loosen up. You eventually surrender to the flow. It’s actually quite cleansing after you do. It’s as supposed to be in nature anyway.

After Remembrance day, and some situations and processes that I was going through lately, this water brought up some memories. It enlightened a new perspective and a new pattern of connecting dots on my path.

These nature’s tears reminded me of so many of my tears in the past. Either goodbyes with people, or to previous versions of me and when going into the new and unknown, or to dreams, hopes and expectations that I’ve had for myself at certain times and when creating new ones, or to experiences with emotions and beliefs that I needed to transform into a lesson to learn from to move on.

I’ve done some thinking lately on ‘I live today as it was my last day’, and I’m seeing and experiencing it now from a new perspective. Two major shifts occurred for me. First, how is it, to really live it as it would be the last day, and second, that this concept actually includes goodbyes. I know it rationally, but when it’s there, it’s still not always easy. There is some resistance, fear, a need to control or at least manage… in relation to a goodbye. It’s the thinking and expectation behind and around it.

I recall one memory with my nephew, when he was about 4 or 5 years old, that taught me about the distinction to do things today or tomorrow. To extend our time together and playtime that day, my nephew wanted to go to another playground after he was playing already for several hours. Like his perfect aunty I usually surrendered, but that day it was already late. I said to him that we can do that tomorrow, that now we need to go home. And he started crying, ‘no, let’s go today, what is tomorrow, tomorrow is nothing, tomorrow is pointless.’ He made me think. Tomorrow could be actually nothing, pointless. We went home anyway, but I recalled the wisdom he shared with me often since that day.

During watching a movie yesterday, I received a text message from someone I had to say goodbye to around 15 years ago. We needed quite some time after ‘saying goodbye’ to actually continue separate ways. He told me few years later about the lyrics of one song that reminded him of me saying the final goodbye, ‘…she threw one life into the river and went into another world…’. And at first I reacted that he threw it away not me, because the cause for us to separate was on his side. But eventually I admitted to myself that it was true. It was me who needed so long to let go of the dreams and hopes and visions and expectations that I had for myself and with him, and to align with the reality. And when I finally did, I did it like a clean slate. Like I’d start again, a new me building my new life from scratch.

My dad used to say, after fully recovered from lung cancer, that since then, his every day is a gift, and he was living this way last 15 years of his life. When he suddenly passed away, it was a quite profound experience for me to find him and to literally face the death of someone so dear and close to me for the first time. It was also an interesting experience then calling everyone to tell them that he passed away, when I needed to repeat several times that he’s really gone, that he’s not with us anymore, that it’s true. It was hard to believe for everyone, because he was so present, and it was so unexpected. However, it was a clear goodbye in this form of being, no words to prepare us for, and no words actually needed to understand it. It has already happened. There was nothing to change this fact.

One speaker at my dad’s funeral said that death (and pain) is the experience of alive. It’s us thinking about what we’ve lost, are losing, or will lose, that makes it difficult. It’s the same I think with our figurative deaths – not just big ones, like saying goodbye to people in romantic and professional relationships, to our youth and vitality etc., but also smaller, daily ones – to say goodbye to our expectations, beliefs, feelings that don’t support us. We usually make the later staying longer, because they seem less serious, less painful.

My nephew is 18 now, and he learned by now to twist his child wisdom, like we adults more or less do. He’s now quite fond of todays, or if it could be possible already yesterday, when it’s something he wants, and he prefers ‘sometime after tomorrow’ when he doesn’t.

There are many situations and goodbyes that are sudden and unexpected, and many that are preparing us for long time to come. It’s hard to say that one way is harder or easier than the other. It’s life. It teaches us what we need to learn on our path. It’s the how we perceive life, days, goodbyes and our role in them, that makes the difference. Live today as if it would be your last. Make it a good one.

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