As the day approaches when my friends all move away, my heart gets heavier and heavier. It is hard to say that I’m serene. Just below the surface of managing daily life is a churning river of grief and/or anger. I’m not sure why I’m angry – I just recognize that its there.
I was speaking with a friend yesterday about the people who are leaving our lives and what impact it is having on me, and she put some unique words to what I’m experiencing. She said that I am suddenly left with a lot of space in my life where my friends have been.
A lot of space. I saw a visual of that as soon as she said it. Where life was filled with activity, trust, relationship, being known, a safety net, entertainment, help in parenting my kids, partners in outreach activities, etc, now there is nothing but space. Maybe that’s why this feels so empty.
So the question is, with what do I fill that space?
The obvious answer is new friends. But that isn’t something that I can manufacture or create on my own.
For now, I’m going to fill it with as much gratitude as I can generate.
This week I am thankful for:
* Friends that met us soon after we moved here and attached themselves to us. They hooked their vision and their dreams to our arrows and flew with us.
* Friends that moved across the nation to join with us in community outreach. What was on our heart was always on their hearts – whether it was work, ministry, kids, finances, or fun.
* Neighbors that quickly became much, much more than neighbors. Friends who worked with us to redefine what we could expect from living life side by side, and who encouraged and supported us freely.
* A family that has been patient with the moments when the churning river of grief and/or anger breaks through the very thin surface of managing daily life.