I suppose that good-byes are a part of life. I've never really been much affected by them. I'm one of those independent people who rarely get tearful at good-byes, and rarely miss people when they're gone.
Don't get me wrong, I love my friends and family, but I guess I just don't depend on them for my happiness.
That can go a few ways, I suppose. But that's not the point of this post.
The point is, I did have to say good-bye to someone this year.
And I really miss them.
This was not someone that I've known for a long time, relatively speaking. In fact, she was a new friend, one that I've known for less than a year and a half.
But you know how it is when you meet someone you connect with instantly? Where you totally get that person? Where you love to meet with them and talk with them because they get you, too?
Yeah. That was this friend.
I knew that she would not be here for long. She and her husband are missionaries, and they're heading to Africa in six months' time. So I knew, when I entered into this friendship, that she would be moving out of the state in a year or so. But what I didn't know was how much I'd enjoy her company.
Conversations, arguments, laughter, book clubs, Bible studies, game nights. Everything was made sweeter with her presence. And now, everything is just a little bit darker.
I know I'll get to see her again. They have plans to visit the States periodically. But who knows where I'll be at that time? Who knows what will happen?
Yet on the whole, I'm not sad. I feel honored. I have made a friendship which will span the globe, a friendship that will always remain dear to me, no matter how far apart we are.
Oh, what a question. I suppose I could take this one a couple of ways: "richer/poorer" in the sense of personal growth, or "richer/poorer" in the sense of financial status.
The most obvious: financial.
Honestly? I think that's a wash.
We've had a lot of financial struggles this year. Ceiling leaks (multiple), personal injuries (multiple), dog injuries (multiple), car expenses (multiple)... Lots and lots of things which, independently, don't make much a fuss, but when taken as a whole, cause an awful lot of grief.
So I'm going to say that I'm richer.
Not the answer you were expecting?
Well, allow me to explain.
True riches are never financial. Financial gain is nice and all, but money doesn't solve my problems for me. And it's certainly not what I want to focus my life on. It's personal gain and strength of character which truly enriches your life.
All right, the list I just gave above doesn't really sound like gain. And there are days where I agree with that.
But then I try to remind myself that trials and tribulations build character.
Who knows how one will respond to a situation except by experiencing it?
So I can rest assured as 2013 approaches, I am stronger because of the trials of 2012.
In 2012, I have developed a character which has stood the test of tribulations.
And so I will enter 2013 with unexpected strength, even if it means more trials are there to welcome me.