Around 2 p.m., we left, and we began our journey to our new life in our new town. I was in tears as I got into my car and said goodbye to what had been my home for the last five and a half years. My four and a half year old asked me why I was crying, and I told him that I was sad to be leaving our house and our friends. I said I knew that I would make new friends, but that I was going to miss my old friends. He told me I should have a book of my friends (his preschool class gave him a book with their pictures and messages and drawings). I smiled through my tears and thought, "I do have a 'book'. It's called Facebook."
I am thankful for Facebook. It is a wonderful tool to have in order to keep in touch with people and see what happens in their lives and be able to share things in my life with them. It makes me feel as if a part of me is still there, almost as if I am simply on vacation. It has helped me to think not that I said "goodbye" but that I said "see you later".
It is hard to express what the last five and a half years were like. We moved to that community before we had children and since then have had two boys who are now four and a half and just about two. It was a welcoming place (neighbors brought over cookies and pies when we moved in) and we made many friends at the college where we worked, in church, and in the town in general. It will always have a special place in my heart. Over time, other close friends also have moved away, and while it is exciting for all of us to pursue the next adventure in our lives, there is a hint of sadness that things will never be the same again.
I never thought I'd be one to move around as much as I have (six times, now, since I was 18), and as difficult as moving is (especially the more stuff you have and when you have kids!), there is also always something to look forward to, new opportunities that have yet to be discovered, new friends, new things to learn, new ways to grow.
The church we visited this past Sunday sang a hymn called "Trees", sung to the tune of "For the Beauty of the Earth", and I'll leave you with one verse of it:
Tree of Promise, keep your vow; with me then, and with me now.Springtime blossoms, winter tears, mark the season of my years.Fashion me, O Lord, to be, always changing as a tree.Life changes. Seasons come and go. We can choose to fight against the changes and not live up to our full potential, and essentially wither and die, or we can choose to change with those seasons as a tree, knowing there is promise ahead.