There’s good in goodbye


“Love is the answer at least for most of the questions in my heart, like, ‘Why are we here?’ and ‘Where do we go?’ and ‘How come it’s so hard?’”

Jack Johnson’s lyrics strike a chord in my heart: love is always the answer. There is so much power evident in the words we speak, the emotions we feel, and the questions we ponder. What is teeming at the edges of these beautiful facets of life is an awe of the world around us, an appreciation that we are blessed to be a part of life as it is lived.

Yet, as Johnson says, life is always better when we’re together. As humans, we desire quality communion and connection, for, as Scripture reminds us, it is not good for us to be alone. People may come and go, plans may change, and we might desire to cultivate peace in our hearts while by ourselves. At the end of the day, we say goodbye and a kind thank you to those in our lives that have blessed our lives for a season.

Love is the answer in the grief, pain, hurt, or sorrow. Love is my driving force, the one passion that allows me to live purposefully and intentionally in communion with my fellow humans. Love is what gets us through the day, from the hellos to the goodbyes to the in betweens.

As the semester ends, I say goodbye to my dear friends, graduating seniors, and my stint as opinion editor, as I will be studying abroad in Florence, Italy, in spring. I never imagined life to move as quickly as it has this semester, and I don’t know if I like it quite yet. I know I have to say goodbye for some time, but I don’t quite know how to.

There’s so much goodness in saying goodbye. Whereas others might seem to dwell on the awful saying goodbye part, let’s draw our attention to the beauty of it all. We have the wondrous blessing of living in harmony with one another, and the time we spend together draws us closer to love. This is what matters: we have the opportunity, in the small sliver of time we are allotted here on this earth, to love one another.

Love makes saying goodbye exceptionally difficult. We can’t bear parting with our loved one, the one we’ve loved fearlessly and authentically for some time. Instead, we can be grateful for the opportunity to love and have been loved, and that is where the goodness is. Let’s say our goodbyes and share in the moment of sweet sorrow, but let’s also remember goodbye doesn’t have to mean forever.

As we say goodbye to those we love and care about, let us remember the special place they have in our hearts and hold them there ever so tightly. No matter what, love is the life force that sustains us. No matter what, life is better when we’re together.