Saying goodbye

I had to hand back to lovely little gerbils that I have been taking care of for the past week or so while their owner was away on holiday. Little furry rodents have always been part of my life and I know they are not the pet of choice for many people but they are for me. Very quickly the two little girls that joined us became part of the family so it was difficult to say goodbye to them today.

Life is constantly changing and saying goodbye is something we have to come to terms with. It may be saying goodbye to work colleagues as we move to a new job, saying goodbye to family or friends as we may be parted, or saying the final goodbye to someone who has been part of our life. It is never easy to do and as I get older I think it gets harder for me to say goodbye.

There is an important way to look at the situation. We have to accept that people (and animals) come into our lives for some reason. They have something to teach us or to share with us and they remain in our lives for as long as they need to. When they leave us or move on it is because they have achieved what they needed to do. To accept this you have to see life as being more than a series of random encounters, which is problematic for many people.

We have to look back on the time we had with the person as see the positives that we gained from the relationship. It is important to remember the good times and how much we have learnt or benefited from having them in our lives. This is a way that you can handle the general changes that take place in our lives.

Dealing with death is a much more complex situation. I won’t sit here and think I have a solution for how to handle things. For one thing I am still trying to make sense of life and death myself so have little to share other than my attempts to try to handle the loss I have faced in my life. My aim is to try and get to the situation where I can move quickly from sadness to a place where I can grow stronger from what I have learnt and gained from the relationship. But that is still a work in progress. As I said goodbye to the little gerbils I am grateful for the joy they have brought into my life for just over a week and for the ideas they have sparked.

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