The Hard Part About Leaving Is How Easy It Becomes
I cried every single time i asked to go to the Nurse’s office when i was a little school girl. The last time it happened was in fifth grade- i started bawling when i asked to go home because i felt sick and my teacher pulled me aside with deep worry in her eyes
“Is something else wrong, Molly? Are you safe at home?”
I remember being appalled that she had asked me that- of course i was safe at home…that was where i was asking to go after all, wasn’t it? It was one of the first times i thought about the effect my billowing tears had on interactions, and how bottling them up made leaving easier.
That lump in my throat that dried out my voice and cracked my will when i begged to escape to the latex-scented office of our school nurse is the same one that gathers when i look into the face of a loved one and know i am turning my back on them for the open future.
Goodbyes…my stomach is aching a bit at the mention of the word as i type this. Or maybe that’s my heart. (Or maybe its the cookie dough i admittedly ate raw before coming to the library…oops)
I have a lot of emotions towards goodbyes. Towards leaving. Towards exploration and freedom and the personal cost to enjoy them. I remember last August i wrote a journal entry right before leaving New Hampshire. I wish i had it with me now to include an expert but i will have to post it later. It is about the massive roots of a giant tree and how as a child you can stare at them and convince yourself they reach all the way to the center of the earth. Deep and strong and going n-o-w-h-e-r-e. Last august i felt like i was tugging at these colossal roots, painfully failing to detach myself from everyone i ever loved and everything i ever knew. The most selfish decision i have made was also the most painful…and also the best. But goodness, how i cried with my goodbyes.
I remember driving over 3000 miles away from my love, i felt both horrified and euphoric over the reality that i had just left. And i remember thinking that it must get easier from there on out. That goodbyes can’t hurt forever.
I suppose the point i am trying to eventually get to is that i was right. Goodbyes do get easier. For my newfound ability to handle parting ways with someone i love, (Which is like, everyone…) I credit the frequent relocation as of late along with my philosophy that time and space are only illusions grasping to define the indefinable world.
I feel like i am realizing now though that it’s not the actual “Goodbye” situation that is the hardest for me, but the concept.
Without boring you, non-existent, faceless reader, with my life story- fear of abandonment was a common theme in my subconscious. I remember feeling afraid picturing all my siblings growing up and moving out of my house when i was little (as if i would stay perpetually 6 and trapped in my parents house..?) Approaching the end of highschool i would have anxiety attacks thinking that my friends would move on and soon forget about me until i was a foggy high school memory. I chose to hold back on college and watched peers and best friends progress in education and i would feel paralyzed in life- watching them all run to the future while i shuffled in the past. A co worker would get a new job and leave the restaurant we worked at and i envisioned my life repeating the same cycle- I would meet a soul, emotionally attach myself to it, and have to watch them live without me once our time together was done. It’s a big issue i think that effected my life in many ways and i am only beginning to tap into it now and analyze.
But now i look back and wonder if i did the opposite just to break my cycle of fear. The year leading up to my move was overwhelming and pivotal in many ways, and somewhere deep down inside me i decided to be the one to leave this time.
Now, i cant remember how it feels to watch taillights pull away. I’m always the one looking in the rear view.