Wednesday, May 14, 2008


Hunter and Kayla
Kayla, Hunter, and Ella

Tonight we said goodbye to our neighbors and friends of 4 years. They are moving - far, far away, and we are sad. It's surprised me a little how much each one of us is feeling this. I walked over there after we'd put the kids down tonight, took one look at my neighbor, Philana, and we both got teary. After we said our goodbyes, I couldn't help the tears that fell on the sidewalk from their house to ours.

Hunter and Kayla are in the same grade at school and have been fast friends since they met at age 3. Kayla and Ella are also very close and can get each other giggling like only little girls can. Kayla's little sister is a year older than Piper, and is full of life. Both of them are just good kids, with good parents. I could on and on about all that we've shared with them over the years. We know stuff about each other. We've helped each other out. When our kids are driving us crazy, we pick up the phone and invite the other one over. It is such a blessing to have a neighbor like that. I am already feeling their absence.

Today we picked Kayla up from school and got to have her over one last time. The kids had made her cards and had gotten she and Brianna a little present. As they sat down for a snack, Hunter said he'd like to say a prayer. He spoke a blessing over sweet Kayla that I will never forget, and then asked God to comfort us, as we got used to missing them. That 7 year old prayer was one of the most honest, pure prayers I think I've ever heard. And, yes, I cried.

I am glad that we invest our lives into the lives of others, but man, it hurts when you have to say goodbye. I'm resisting the temptation to go find Michael W. Smith's "Friends are Friends Forever" and wallow in self pity, as I belt out - "Though it's hard to let you go, in the Father's hands we know, that a lifetime's not too live as friends"!

So, I got home from our neighbors house and came inside to see the latest news out of China. Wow. Enormous loss. Some have lost their home, parents, spouse, and child - all in a moment's time. We did hear that Piper's hometown is fine, as well as her orphanage. But there are several orphanages that have not been heard from at all.

Loss is an inevitable part of life, and I want our kids to learn how to walk through loss well, not run from it...or get stuck in it. The funny thing about parenting, is the only way to teach them is to show them.

Tomorrow we will bake some brownies and be ready to meet and welcome our new neighbors...


Young Creations said...

I can relate. Neighbors are so important. We recently had a family Bnai Mitzvah. This is like a Bar Mitzvah, just plural. My daughter, my son and I all conducted the service together. We had a large party after the service. There were so many neighbors there with us to celebrate this big event that we could not all fit on the stage together to take a picture. '
I learned in Brownies so many years ago this song,
"Make new friends, and keep the old, some are silver and the others gold."

Peapod Four said...

I HATE saying goodbye. I felt a few extra tears in my eyes as I read this because I totally know how hard it is. I'm glad we invest in others too, but the pain of parting kills me.

Hunter's blessing was absolutely precious. I would have cried too.

The stories and pictures from China are just terrible. It seems every day they are worse. I'm glad to hear that Piper's orphanage is ok.

And lastly, since I'm writing a big long letter-comment today, we are getting new neighbors too! I saw the Comcast truck today, so I'm guessing they will move in tomorrow? We'll see. I have to work, so hopefully we'll get over to meet them on Sunday. I'm hoping for a friend for Brenna.