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Saying Goodbye

"I don't really get goodbyes and why they're such a big deal."

"Um...it's kind of a cultural thing, Tami!"

"I know, but why? I don't get why they're such a big deal.   Goodbyes just kind of feel weird and I'm completely okay with changing that cultural norm of having to say them."

"I don't think we say goodbye so everyone knows we're leaving as much as it's a way to acknowledge the people you were with and that it meant something to you that they spent time with you and honoring that."

...I can never win a discussion with my brother-in-law Matt.

He was right.

To quote Dumb & Dumber (yep, I just went there), "I hate goodbyes!"  I don't know that I'm bad at them...it's just that I like to avoid them.  I'm not even trying to go deep here.  Obviously, I quoted Dumb & Dumber y'all...and I just said y'all. :)

I just know that as a general rule...if I have a choice...I don't say them.  But for the past two weeks, I've been saying goodbye to something that's sat at the very foundation of my past 20 years...my home where I grew up.

It was the answer to my 7 year old prayers when I'd pray we could move to America someday.  It's where I would lay in bed with my sisters because I was terrified of thunderstorms.  The basement is filled with memories of our "Swiss Alps Bar", TIFridays, Sleepovers, and what was eventually named "The Cave" and all that came with that.  The curved banister is probably unsteady because I tried one too many times to slide down it.  The music room is where my mom would sit on the couch and read as I'd play piano for hours.  Each room is filled with my life...it serves as the backdrop to my most significant memories.

To answer the questions, no, it hasn't been sold...or even put on the market, yet.  But in less than a month, it'll be empty.  It's going to be one of those places we drive our kids by and say, "Mom and Aunt Tami grew up there!"...weird.  I remember my grandparents doing that, and I kind of didn't care.  I hope they care.

I know it's just a building. A house.  I'm excited for the new things happening in my family's lives...but I can't help but feel like saying goodbye to our home for the past 20+ years is the last significant step of saying goodbye to my mom.  That's how it feels anyway.  It's time...and it's good.  I'm breathing in all the smells, sounds, and textures...trying to lock them all in my memory so I can come home to them when I need to.

As I try to soak up the last weeks with the place I've called home...I don't want to just leave without a goodbye.  I want to acknowledge that it meant something to me and honoring it.  I'm letting myself feel all the joy and pain of letting it go.  I'll be honest, it's already so much more difficult than I'd anticipated.  But I'm so thankful for the past couple weeks I've gotten to spend saying goodbye the best way I know how...by enjoying it.

It's good to move on...and let go...so we can take in new things.  But I wanted to write this down for myself, to honor the time spent there.  It's served as a wonderful home and holds my childhood.  I loved my home...but here's to life, moving on, and saying goodbye.


17 comments:

megs @ whadusay said...

This made me tear up. It is a special house that has been filled with VERY special people!

Anonymous said...

That home holds special memories for so many of us, Tami and also for me, it feels like a final goodbye to Kath, when I think about not being there again. It was so filled with memories of her and all that she embodied. But, as you said, it's a new season of life and we will treasure the memories.

Love,
Aunt Pam

Rebekah said...

Tam...I actually don't have much to say except that you put into words all my feelings about leaving here. It hurts because like you said, it's the last thing that we've gotten to really hold onto that was Mommy's and a place she loved and shared with so many. Thanks for helping me say goodbye too.

alisonsutter said...

Tears for you Tam. What wonderful memories! Thanks for sharing your heart.

Kasey said...

This was such a great post, Tam. It is such a great house that holds many special memories for me, too. I love you and I'll be praying for you as you say goodbye.

Anonymous said...

Your attitude is wonderful. Rejoice in the past precious memories and embrace the future.
Cheryl W

Anonymous said...

beautiful words.

Jacki said...

I have yet to do this... my parent's home is the only place i lived until I was married... they are still there, and I dread the thought of going through this. You put it into beautiful words.

smw said...

this has made me out and out cry. :( there are SO many wonderful memories there for me, too. so thankful for the times i got to be there with all of you.

Daish said...

Got me teared up too. Kinda want to bawl.

Nancy K said...

Wonderful tribute to your childhood home. Not the home built of bricks and wood, but the home of the heart! I felt the LOVE for your mom, your family and your memories. You made me cry, too! God bless your goodbyes!

Daish said...

I have great memories there too. I felt deeply comfortable the few times I stayed there. Not even physically neccessarily, but emotionally. Which for my introverted self, was not completely normal. I vividly remember talking with your mom and feeling like she really loved me. I remember her validating me and encouraging me. She made me feel special. I loved her! Kind like I just love you girls. :)

leah said...

aww. i'm all teared up too tam. you have such a way with words! love our memories in the cave. praying for you and you say goodbye.

Daish said...

just to clarify...i was VERY comfortable physically too!! i got nervous that didn't come across right in my earlier post! :)

Yasmin Sarai said...

I think that's one reason why photography is so special... because even we when have to say goodbye, it gives us something to hold on to... to keep the memories alive <3

Cindy said...

What a beautiful post! You are an EXCELLENT writer and I am always blessed by your thoughts. Cindy

Becky said...

This brought me to tears Tam. I still remember so clearly the first time we rolled up to your house with my parents for a dinner after you all first moved here. Swiss Alps and all the other wonderful memories of that house, your mom, and great times are treasures of memories that I'm so blessed to have.

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