We have 5 days left in our current location. It is getting down to the wire of saying goodbyes. I have said so many good-byes that my heart hurts. I am not done yet. I said ” see you later” to my sister on Saturday. That was the hardest one so far.

I feel guilty sometimes leaving everyone. This time is especially difficult because I am leaving my parents. I feel guilty leaving them. This isn’t the first time I have left them. The first time I went off to college. Obviously there was no guilt then. The second time I moved overseas with my husband of one year. No guilt then either. My sister was still living at home and my parents were young. This time I feel guilty because they are older. Maybe it is my imagination, but I feel like they need me more. They are used to it now. My parents continue on. They never make me feel guilty for leaving. I bring that on all by myself.

So is it easier to leave or be left?

I can’t decide.

As the ones leaving we are off on a new adventure. Though I hate calling it that. We get to play tourist for awhile. We will be busy settling into our new home. But after that? We have the job of making new friends, finding a new church, and establishing ourselves in the homeschooling community. We will be lonely. Hopefully not for long, but I have moved before. I know we will be lonely. This time I get to deal with teenagers. Without getting too personal, let’s just say that my teens have some difficult life lessons ahead. Ones that they have to learn themselves. I can’t help them. If I try, they won’t believe me anyway. I will just be here when they need me.

For the ones left behind it will be hard too. I have been the one left behind. I know that feeling too. You go about your same routine, but you are missing your good friend. You see a familiar car coming toward you and raise your hand to wave only to remember that it can’t be your friend because they are in Virginia now. A new movie releases and you can’t wait to see it, but the friend you want to see it with will be seeing it in Georgia. There is an emptiness there. The one good thing about being left behind is that your core does not change. A good friend is missing, but you are still in familiar surroundings. With Facebook and email it has become much easier to stay in touch.

So I don’t know. Right now I would say that leaving is more difficult, but that is only because I am in the middle of it. If the roles were flipped I would say that being left is worse. The more I think about it, the more I suppose that it is a toss up. It never gets easier. That much I know.

P.S. I just read a short book titled “Pioneer Children”. My children have no reason to complain. I also am thankful that though I have a long ahead of me, my drive will not take six months and I don’t have to make dinner next to the wagon. Counting my blessings.