There’s something I’ve been dreading doing that I did tonight. There’s actually a few things I’ve been dreading, but tonight’s thing had to be done tonight.
I had to say goodbye to yaymee. I’ve been putting it off, and delaying to the last minute. It’s the last minute. I have class tomorrow morning from 9-12 and her plane leaves at 12:48 pm.
These were my thoughts from before I went to her house tonight.
It’s been a long time since I’ve been the one left behind. I’m usually the leaver – in fact I’m really good at leaving people behind. I’ve talked about this some before… it’s explained well in Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal Dreams. When things get hard, I buckle up my tough old heart and hit the road. Usually I’m not leaving people behind on purpose, I’m trying to leave bits of myself that I don’t like behind.
But this time it’s different. Yaymee’s going to West Africa to serve in the Peace Corps – it’s the toughest job she’ll ever love. And I’m… well, I’m staying here. In fact, I think the last time I was left behind was when Semaphoria up and moved to Utah with her family in 1992. And I dealt badly with it then, too.
I spent the last few months I had with my very best friend distancing myself from her, putting up subconscious barriers to make it hurt less. I wound up hurting her in the process, hurting myself, and all around we all hurt more.
I find that I’ve been doing that again. I think we both have – the past few times we’ve spent time together by ourselves it was… muted. Africa was the elephant in the room. Don’t get me wrong – I am so happy for her, I am so proud of her, I can’t imagine anyone doing better and thriving more.
I’m just jealous that Guinea gets to have her and that I don’t.
So I’ve pulled back. And it stinks. I didn’t want to do that, my sadness has just been stronger than my will with her in the past month.
But because I love her, tonight I will ring her doorbell with the best smile I can muster, spend some mellow time with some friends. When it’s time to leave, I will walk up to her, wrap my arms around her, and give her the tightest and longest and best hug I know how to give.
It has to last until 2008.