Queens Goodbye

I found some buried treasure in my draft box today! I must have intended to post it sometime in the fall, but then forgot or chickened out (sometimes I do this when I have feelings that are too strong to handle in the moment). 

In the spirit of my (re)New year, I want to be honest about those feelings … even if it’s eight months later. Better than never. And now, Queens Goodbye.

LIC Panorama

“How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.”  – A. A. Milne

I came across this quote the other day. Let’s just say it stuck with me like honey on a Pooh Bear. Probably because goodbyes have been on my mind and heart a lot lately.

Goodbyes with shorter time frames, like telling our family and friends in NC we’ll be back after holidays of the federal, religious or personal sort. Goodbyes with longer time frames, like those we’re starting to make as Husband, Salem and I prepare for a new life chapter outside the five boroughs. And everything in between.

I’ve never been good with goodbye. Sure, I know it’s about wishing others well in leaving, not about saying leaving is good. But really, reality is so much more complicated than that. It’s like ripping off a bandaid – no matter how quick, it’s never as clean or painless as someone promised it would be. At least not for me.

In my life I’ve botched goodbyes with coworkers, friends, family, and probably random strangers too. Not proud of that. Just an impetus to get more of this round right. That starts with giving myself permission to be O.K. with beautiful, messy goodbyes in the first place. Because that’s also how life is.

A. A. Milne was on to something. In the moments before goodbyes are shared, we have opportunities to appreciate how lucky we are. Lucky to have something worth missing in first place. Things like our first home in Queens.

Queens, it’s been real. I’ll miss so much about you. Except the 7. Maybe.

Ryan Vale McGonigle

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