I grab the novel sitting on the center console between the two front seats of the Suburban--I'm almost finished. I read for almost two hours today in the car on the way back from Dubuque. That might be why my stomach is churning and I have a headache. Or maybe it's because of something else.
I start reading. This book is good. The fourth book of one of my favorite series--I'm doing my annual reread of all of David Eddings' books. But I still don't feel well, and my eyes are strained from motion sickness, and so I put it down after only a few pages. I start feeling tired. Maybe I should just shut the lights off and try to take a nap or something. Not like that ever goes well for me. But I'm literally about to fall asleep, so...
I grab my headphones and start to put them in, searching through my music for some soft instrumental pieces to fall asleep to. I don't always do that, but sometimes it helps. I pick a Lowercase Noises track and close my eyes.
I can't fall asleep. The track is "Persistence", and it's one of those wonderfully nostalgic pieces that reminds me of the past and has me looking towards the future. I sigh and realize that I'm wide awake now, my thoughts racing at a hundred miles an hour. Four hours ago was the last time I saw them. The last time I'd see them for a long time. Again.
I haven't been sad about it, really. They're going to a fantastic college with fantastic people and learning fantastic things. I miss them, and they miss me, but we're all okay with the way things are. And that's pretty awesome. They have a home in Missouri now. I'm so excited for them.
We'll keep in touch. I know we will. And life is different, but life is still great, and God is still good. And I'll see them again along the road. But the music is still playing in my ears, and I feel nostalgic. So I take out the letter that she wrote to me.
I read it for the second time today. I smiled the first time I read it, after we all left Dubuque--I headed back to Janesville, and they headed back to Moberly. I smile again as I read it to nostalgic music. But this time I cry. I knew it was going to happen eventually, I'm a pretty emotional person. But it's not a sad, bitter cry, as so many have been before it. It's a happy little sob that wrenches at my heart and turns my brain to jelly as I thank God for everything that is amazing in my life.
It feels like a dam breaking loose, setting my emotions free and taking with it any remaining sense of loss I was holding on to. I finish the letter as I continue to sob. I grab my phone as a short verse comes to my mind. I start composing a tweet.
And the tears, they finally came
In between these bouts of rain
Time will tell, time will show
When this rain will make the flowers grow
I hit send.
2015 is just beginning. Life will be different. But life will be good. I know this.
My friends are still my friends, no matter where life takes us. I love them, they love me. Even if we disagree at times, even if things may drive us apart... We share something that ordinary people just don't understand. You see, we all met at this church in Janesville, and we all grew and learned and leaned on each other as we all held God's hand. And I don't think any of us will ever forget that. I still have them. I still have her.