This morning I leave to drop Eddie off for his flight back to Seattle. It's been 22 months since we first arrived and it's his first trip back. As he packs up and plans his itinerary, I'm thinking of all the times I've returned home after moving away.
As a child, our family moved "far away" several times. By the time I left for college, I had lived in 4 states and Canada; in approximately 10 homes. Every time we would go back to visit, there would be an excitement and a worry; so excited to see our friends, but also unsure about the strength of those bonds as time had passed.
Back in the 90s, as a kid, I did little to maintain relationships over months and years or distance. We would just show up and hope our friends were happy to see us. Nowadays, with the internet, social media and video calls, we have more tools with which to reach-out and connect. And yet, life still moves on, and sometimes so do friendships.
For someone who is a seasoned "move-away-er" I think I have a fairly healthy expectation of the work I need to put-in in order to maintain the friendships I value. At the same time, I know that despite whatever effort I put in, the other person may not reciprocate, may not give me another thought. This can be hard.
So, pray for Eddie with me, these next two weeks. Pray that his heart would be protected from rejection, while staying soft and strong and true to himself.