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Some choices when saying goodbye

Friday, December 7, 2007 by Marianne Elliott

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When the time comes to say goodbye to people and places there are several choices.

You can rush through each day distracted by the to do list and focused on the end point.

You can focus on the new possibilities which can be opened up only through this process of letting go.

You can sit and reflect on all the factors that make this departure very right at this time.

You can wallow in the sadness, drowning in a sense of loss and of uncertainty about the future.

You can treasure every moment, making the most of each opportunity to say farewell with care and to honour each person and place that is being left.

You can feel overwhelmed by all that is left undone, all that has not been achieved.

You can mourn the alternative endings, the alternate futures which didn´t survive the crucible of real life.

You can swing wildly from one of these choices to another.

And in the end you can hope to find the courage within you to say goodbye honestly, exposing the depth of your love for these people and the equal parts fear and hope that you carry for the future of this place.

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19 Responses to "Some choices when saying goodbye"

  1. Your blog helps putting my own daily life in perspective, I’m thankful for that.

  2. amy says:

    the wisdom that you show in acknowledging this range of emotions suggest to me that your goodbyes will be just what they need to be – for all concerned – full of love.
    i noticed Rory Stewart’s book on your reading list. I just finished Occupational Hazard and have now added The Places In Between to my list. thank you.

  3. michael morrow says:

    freda,
    Your commitment and ability to see, recognize, and acknowledge light through the lens darkly; your diligence in allowing societal resolve to define itself fueled by your blood, sweat, and tears, while you sweetly fade to the next project, further seasoned having taken the journey, prepared to receive the next challenge with an even greater level of love and light regardless of what other’s say or do; allowing, knowing the past will be whatever it sees fit, is exemplary on all counts; is art personified.
    I see my pallet loaded with experience-material-perspective-presence ready to be used in characterizing perpetual sparks created as I continue to come into contact with and move through life’s atmosphere/environment. I see inherent friction creating/generating material between me and life as fodder for expression of personal experience that gives my children and others some sort of look into me. While I am not responsible for other’s response to my contribution, I do have a responsibility to tell my story as I see fit. Never mind words like honesty, clarity, nor any of those words that are so easy for me to believe I have control over. My contribution, at some very base level, has a persona all its own. As long as I am diligent, willing to express through committed action, and dedicated to being prepared, the result can be nothing short honest and clear.
    Having said that, I have several art classes scheduled for next semester. I am seeing-considering-developing a dance piece using the idea I broached in my last note to you. I would like to use some of the photographic images you have captured during your time in Europe. Is there any possibility you would consider such an opportunity for your art to somehow be apart of and inform my idea? I would greatly appreciate it if you would share some of your photos with me, and the world, to use as catalyst for my project?
    I have a lady friend here in Utah who is from Istanbul. She is a traditionally trained, very experienced, professional folk-belly dancer. She also feels possibilities and timing coming together to capture and express the beauty of phoenix rising. I would love to talk to you about some of these ideas if you are interested.

  4. homeinkabul says:

    Wishing you strength in your goodbyes.

  5. tiny noises says:

    Aren’t these growing pains strange, uncomfortable, yet completely divine? In times of goodbyes is when I have been most aware of how I am defining myself for that period of time on into the near future and yet I wouldn’t necessarily say it felt that clear at the time.
    cheers to you as you shed your skin and move into the next phase. x m

  6. Swirly says:

    I think you summed up perfectly how difficult good-byes can be, and I have no doubt you will be able to take the time to say each farewell with an open heart and focused attention. I love you.

  7. Lin says:

    i think saying goodbye is all of the above…ending with the last one..you are all love…and can be feisty when necessary…but the people that matter know your love..have experienced your love…and will for ever hold you close in their hearts…thinking of you!xx

  8. [a} says:

    Praying for you…
    ..hope everything goes well.

  9. megg says:

    oh honey –
    I wish you all of the strength in the world. I know about goodbyes – I feel like my life is overflowing with them – though none anything like those you are experiencing right now. Enjoy each precious moment.
    I’m out of the loop – where to next for you??!
    love to you!!!
    xoox

  10. Tickled Pink says:

    I love this quote: “True love doesn’t have a happy ending, because true love never ends. Letting go is one way of saying I love you.” Many blessings as you say goodbye to this amazing chapter of your life’s story.

  11. jen lemen says:

    your love and care is palpable in this post. wishing courage to show your heart.

  12. Paris Parfait says:

    So much to read and catch up on here. It’s nearly 3 a.m. for me; will be back later today to comment. xo

  13. PJ says:

    wow! Just to let you know-I’m a reader that lurks…a ‘soccer mom’ of sorts- your blog grabbed me a couple of months ago. The depth, the seriousness, the ..gosh, see, I don’t even have the words for it. There are some of us that try to stay educated (what we think that is)or think we are contributing to something bigger than ourselves, yet fail badly at just staying in our safe little bubble. You have made me relect on this… although, it doesn’t lessen what little things we (my family) do or serve…just adds insight. Your journey is continuing!

  14. sassy says:

    Beautiful. I’m looking forward to reading as your journey continues…

  15. Lin says:

    Just to say I’m thinking of you…beaming you love! trusting that you will feel all the love, care and warmth we are sending, in your heart! If you feel something ‘warm’ in your heart…that is all of us saying…we are there..with you…in your heart…right next to you! HOlding your hand..wiping tears…loving you! xx

  16. Lin says:

    Sweet friend….imagine a rainbow….we are standing on top…counting down to three to go down…to discover what is at the end of the rainbow…hold my hand…and take a peek at http://periwinkle-lin.blogspot.com/, to have the actual peak at a fabulous artist!
    It felt to me as if I have found THE pot of gold…for today! 🙂
    Hold my hand…let’s count…3….2….xx
    (for when you want to go on a magical adventure)

  17. annieelf says:

    This had to have been so hard for you dear friend. Hold your head up and know that you did your best. You also very wisely recognized when it was time to let go because you best would not be good enough anymore. Holding you in my heart, Annie

  18. schmoops says:

    hi honey ~
    i have been absent for a bit but just wanted to let you know that you are in my thoughts as you continue to say your goodbyes. your heart is wide, open and beautiful. xoxo

  19. John Mullis says:

    not easy eh. All the best for Christmas and for whatever the new year holds for you. I’ll stay tuned!

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