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Always Say Goodbye - She Seeks - Week of August 29

  • 2016 Aug 29

{Always Say Goodbye}
the final post from this she seeks team member

One of the biggest mistakes in my entire college career was actually made a few days before I ever set foot on campus. It was my final week at home, my life was neatly packed into boxes and several outfits hung in my closet with the tags still dangling from them. My future roommate and I already exchanged emails and my new laptop and shower caddy were just waiting to be used. I was ready to go.

So ready, in fact, that I just wanted to get in the car and leave. Goodbyes weren't my thing. Subconsciously I held onto a belief that saying formal goodbyes would bring a level of closure to my relationships and experiences at home that I wasn't ready to see end. It was like I believed I could go off to college while freezing time at home and I could return at Christmas to life as I'd always known it.

The problem was, I didn't realize I was feeling this way so I couldn't articulate my crazy emotions to anyone else. Instead, I just tried to disappear. In my final few weeks at home I backed out of fun events planned with friends at the last minute. I was slow at returning phone calls. When people pressed me about my sudden flightiness I gave casual answers like, "Sorry, I've just been so busy..."

When my move-in date at the dorms finally arrived I left town eager to start my new life. I breathed a sigh of relief when I settled in under my new comforter that first night and realized I had successfully avoided my dreaded goodbyes.

Facebook didn't exist yet, so my first year away flew by with little contact from those I had blown off on my way out of town. But when summer came I was in for a shocking reality as I realized life at home hadn't remained frozen in time. In fact, some of the friends I had casually blown off no longer wanted anything to do with me. They'd been so hurt by how little I'd seemed to care about them that they were hesitant to even accept an invitation to get together over coffee or dinner.

It wasn't until then that I confronted the reasons behind my behavior. The truth was, I cared about these friends deeply and was afraid of what a formal goodbye would do to our relationships. I avoided a goodbye so I could avoid feeling pain with little regard for how that would make them feel.

After tearful apologies and hard work on my part to attempt to rebuild, some of those relationships were repaired that summer. Others remained strained until I eventually lost touch with those people.

That summer I learned a hard lesson about what Paul meant when he wrote, "Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others" (Phil. 2:4).

I learned that communication and closure are important in relationships and that people are more likely to be compassionate if you speak up before you unintentionally hurt them.

In The Muir House by Mary DeMuth, 20-something Willa Muir finds herself struggling with her own effort to find closure and undo wounds from the past before they cause her to hurt someone she loves in the present. This book explores topics like "trauma, healing, love new and old and the life changing choices people make to keep their reputations intact" all from the lens of a biblical world view.

Shannon Primicerio is an author and speaker who has immensely enjoyed her time as part of the She Seeks team. She looks forward to staying connected with you through Facebook, Twitter and her website www.beingagirlbooks.com. Friend or follow her to keep in touch.

© 2011 by Shannon Primicerio. All rights reserved.

For more devtionals like this one, check out Proverbs 31 Ministries


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