PD Series: Beginning of Good-Byes

Despite my pale white skin and love of sunflowers, I’m a born and raised Florida gal 🙂 Our ‘last’ trip to Florida came rolling around the corner. It took us for a quick day down in South Florida, then across to the Gulf side for the rest of our time.

Sarah on Dock
I spent many a day fishing with my dad, feeding bread to ducks, and catching minos and tadpoles on this canal – July 2016

Good-byes never get easier; however, they do eventually become a new normal in an m’s life. I’m grateful to have gone into this trip anticipating good-byes, thanks to Pre-field Training a week prior. In doing so, in anticipating good-byes, I was able to grieve as thoroughly as possible the people, places and things I know in Florida; and to allow others to grieve in their own way and time.

Florida Sunset
Nothing like the ocean to show the greatness of our G – July 2016

My husband took photos of me in some of the fondest places around my parents’ house and grandmother’s house. I acknowledged not only the grief of the immediate loss but even what hadn’t been nor will be for now, trusting G with where relationships were being left. I spent intentional moments saying “good-bye”, not “see-ya”. I said good-bye to the cat and the backyard canal, to the ocean and familiar roads. To my next-door neighbors, my grandma, my good friend and her husband-newlywed, to new friends of only two days, and finally my parents.

She’s a lovely lady – love you, grandma! (July 2016)

We will see my parents once more in the Midwest, yes. And yes, there’s Skype and all technology has to offer. But even when I don’t understand, even when others don’t understand, we’re to say “good-bye”. Because L willing we will return to these places and these people again, but it won’t be the same. It will be a while. We’ll be different, they’ll be different, if and when we see each other again. And that’s okay- it’s just one of many reasons we say “good-bye”.

Sarah with Parents
Where would I be without these two? Love you mom and dad! (July 2016)

How lucky I am to have something that makes saying good-bye so hard.
― A.A. Milne

Sarah and Christina
Grateful for this special friend- love you, Christina! (July 2016)

Many tears and much joy were had on this trip. It was a lovely visit and G’s grace was evident. To those of you who were praying, we are deeply grateful. I’d like to leave you with a few lyrics, which played in my mind after every good-bye:

” What if my greatest disappointments
Or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can’t satisfy
What if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are Your mercies in disguise.”

Laura Story, “Blessings” – Listen to full song with lyrics

In His Mercy, Sarah Lynn