There and back again
When we're at home in Michigan, I miss my family in an abstract, distant sort of way. I miss them, but I get busy with my life--taking care of Miri and Niko, chores, orchestra, teaching Sunday School, organizing a mom's group, reading books for book club, spending time with Jesse--and it becomes easy to forget how much I miss them.
When we visit them again, suddenly that missing comes to the forefront--I see my family again, remember how much I love them and think "OH! I didn't realize how much I was missing you!"
So when it's time for us to part, that missing is very present in my mind. It was impossible for me to not cry as I hugged my loved ones goodbye.
When I feel that way, sometimes I think (fleetingly) that it would be better to just never visit, so that sadness doesn't come to the forefront and I don't hurt so much.
But then, isn't that love, and life, and being human? Loving other people brings the risk of getting hurt, but without that risk we can't feel the joy that love brings. The joy of hugging my mother, laughing with my brother, teasing my father, chasing my son, curling up with my husband--these are all lost if I don't choose to love.
So it's worth it. It's worth it to feel sad when I leave those I love, because I get to love them when I'm with them.
To my family: Thank you for bringing me so much joy. I love you and miss you!