Today is my last day in Atlanta and as of right now I’m handling my emotions because the reality that I’m leaving and not coming back for six months is still setting in. I said my goodbyes to a few friends last night and to some of my coworkers from Apple tonight. I was expecting that yesterday would be my last day of work but I am going in for a few hours later this afternoon after I wrap up some last minute things that need to be taken care of.
One particular goodbye from last night got to me in a way I wasn’t expecting. It’s a funny feeling realizing that you aren’t quite sure when you’ll see a person again. A person who has been a constant in your life for almost a year. It was weird to think that the next time we may be together again is in a country on the other side of the world a year and a half from now. My eyes started watering up as a brushed it off and tried to keep my composure but then there’s that last glance before you turn and walk down the driveway and into uncertainty. After I got in my car and drove down the street tears just started streaming down my face.
“And if you never stop when you wave goodbye
You just might find if you give it time
You will wave hello again
You just might wave hello again.”—John Mayer
Driving, I flashed back to Friday night playing with Dov and Eitan (some friends’ kids that I’m particularly fond of) after Shabbat dinner. Eitan crawled up into my lap, took a deep breath, and then nuzzled his head into my neck to go to sleep. He then proceeded to give me a goodnight kiss after we tucked him in bed. It was all I could do to keep from breaking down then. I kept trying to memorize his little feet and hands, his giggle when I nibble on his toes and bite his feet, and all I kept thinking was how he’s not going to be three years old when I come back and he won’t have his beautiful long, blonde, curly hair anymore.
Leaving Birmingham was never this hard and I’m still trying to figure out why. In a way I’m glad that I’m actually sad about leaving a place as I never usually am. I’m always ready for it when the time comes but this time I’m not. Of course I have to come back for another year to finish school, but there’s something else that I feel is unfinished here and I feel so blessed to have made so many amazing friends here that I’m sad about leaving. If I can just make it through tomorrow I’ll be happy because then I can just cry all the way to Birmingham if I feel the need to. Then from Birmingham it’s nothing but soaking up time with my family and friends there, preparing for the flight and trip, and looking forward to the next exciting chapter in my life.
“What is that feeling when you’re driving away from people and they recede on the plain ‘til you see their specks dispersing? It’s the too-huge world vaulting us and it’s goodbye. But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies.”—Jack Kerouac