I’ve written about many good-byes on this blog. Too many for my taste. One of the hardest things about staying in Lewis County is the fact that I am the one always sending people off and wishing them well on their new ventures. It’s not an easy job. It’s one of the hardest things. Yesterday was one of those good-bye days. I knew it was coming, but that didn’t make it any easier.
I’ve known all summer that my wonderful student helper of three years, Aimee, would be leaving for college at the end of the summer. Knowing it was coming didn’t keep me from denial. Somehow I was still caught off guard by Aimee’s last night! Oh, last night… Just writing that makes me sad. The last two weeks of August, my class visits our student ministry, Fusion, to see what their transition in the fall will be like. I, however, had us sneak out early so I could surprise Aimee with a cake in University of Washington colors. I even got UW plates and napkins! It was great to celebrate Aimee and her three years of influencing young lives. It was fun go with the UW theme and I think she appreciated it. She took the plates and napkins with home her! We took one last group picture as a class and the end of a season officially happened… Insert tears here! I got my own picture with her, I walked her to the front doors and hugged her at least 3 times in 15 minutes.
When I started teaching, I was aware that kids grow up. They become teenagers and then I build relationships with them grow deeper through the crazy stuff of life and then they graduate and they decided to go to college outside of the area and then they are gone. This is the first time this has happened but I know it’s not the last. Every year this will happen. My kids, the girls I love and taught as a 11 year-olds will grow up, become adults, and move away. I can’t go with them. I can’t look out for them. I have to trust that they have the foundation they need and that God is going with them. He will never leave them alone. Oh, trust, why is it such a hard lesson to learn? Anyway, it’s been hard, but I am trusting God for all the good things this next season will bring. I am thankful for the time that I’ve had with my girls and I wouldn’t change this journey for anything, even though it does come with it’s own set of good-byes.