May 14, 2005

When one thing ends it inevitably brings about something better. But only if you can open your eyes and heart to see the beauty in the change. The pain of loss is as inevitable as the change that accompanies the ending. But the pain doesn't have to be the sum total of the event. One end transitions beautifully into a golden dawn if you let it.

Saying goodbye has unfortunately become natural here. New Zealand is as much about farewells and endings as it is about meetings and adventure. But even as the sorrow of losing Natalie makes me feel like I'm swirling down a drain somewhere, I am surrounded by friends in my beloved Wellington again. The tears dried as I climbed Mount Vic with Lucas and was embraced into Andrew's home.

The learning curve here is so steep. Sometimes I feel like I'm just floundering around not really taking anything in. I feel like so much has been handed to me that it's impossible for it all to soak in. And yet sometimes I feel that I've earned a lifetime of experience in only a handful of months. That all the struggles, goodbyes, greetings, challenges, and horizons have shaped me definitively beyond my wildest imaginings. I hope I can take this and make it something beautiful when I'm forced at last to return home. I hope I can remember, every time I have to say goodbye to someone I love, that I'll simply be stepping through a new door the very next instant.

And anyway, goodbye is never forever. There's always tomorrow.