Feb.28.2021 ----- San Diego, Calif.
Strange, how people close their chapters differently. Sometimes it’s a choice, sometimes it’s not. They can end with bitterness and resentment, or with nostalgia and love. I think scars are left behind either way. Some people close years-long chapters in a single day; some take weeks or months to seal off that section of the book. I don’t think there’s a right or wrong way to end one period of life and begin another — transitions are rarely neat and tidy.
When I think about closing certain chapters in my life, I wonder how much will unknowingly seep into the next pages. Some of those reminders are unintentional, but some you can choose. So, I have to ask myself, what do I take with me and what do I leave? If you choose to take only the good, and forego the bad, did you learn anything? But if we take the bad, even just some of it, we also risk taking the pain, the grief, the hurt. Like most things, I doubt there’s a perfect balance.
If you’re like me, any periods of transition are difficult. Even if I know the changes are good for me, even if I know I’ll be happier letting go of certain people or phases of life, even when I’m the one choosing to make this change, I struggle to adjust. I’ve learned it’s possible to know things will be better, but to allow the grief and hurt to run its course. You can struggle and still be strong; you can be sad and still be hopeful; you can miss something and still not want it back. These contradictions are part of healing, and healing is never linear because of these contrasts that test our heart and mind.
There is comfort in knowing that the world keeps moving — people keep working, dogs keep barking and the weather keeps changing. Even in your fear and anxiety about the end of an era, you are still in the middle of other chapters, and of course, just beginning new ones. There is more than just this single chapter, there is more than just the ending or how exactly it came to a close. There is always more.