(what I mean when I say I feel ‘sad’)

Over the last four months I’ve said goodbye to four closest friends I’ve made here in Miri – the last one being tonight and also perhaps my oldest ever friend. For each, we knew the goodbye was coming (and okay they moved back to the good ol’ Big City, let’s not be overly dramatic here) so we dealt with the change like the adults we are now: made sure to spend more time with each other; crossed off leftover items in their Miri bucket lists; turn serious conversations about the unknown-yet-exciting future into laughter… I took each “Hey see you whenever I’m back in PJ!” – which is surprisingly somehow pretty often ha – with a grin and lowkey, no-big-deal demeanor.

But tonight I found myself hugging and holding onto my oldest friend a little longer and tighter, subconsciously dreading our farewell. Really, again? It’s ironic too: we’re saying goodbye exactly a year after reuniting right here in this little town. What a year 2016 has been, sincerely.

The truth is – the honest truth is: being the one left behind (or the one who stays, depending on which perspectives I use to view this) sucks. Ever since I ventured outside of the family home, the first being to Stateside at age nineteen, I’ve conditioned myself to get used to impermanence: rental homes; borrowed friends; temporary solace. Frustratingly though, even after 7 years – 7 years! – I’ve yet to get used to having to start anew then bid farewell to individuals I’ve emotionally invested in; shared dreams and heartbreaks with; and laughed and loved with. Found families.

My heart keepsakes conversations and preserve them in written words. If I’ve written about you, or us, and especially our conversations – that’s love (…’is‘ or ‘was‘ is open to rhetorics). One moment there we were, spending time like any other day that has become usual for us – late nights filled with laughter, deepest fears and unabashed truths – and suddenly I’m here, still here, alone again.

The reality about the fluidity of life and transient nature of time and people – people, of course – always breaks me in the most human way.

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