Today was my last Sunday at my home church. My last worship with familiar songs and singers, my last announcements in the traditional and not-so-traditional way, my last message with my amazing senior pastor. Oh, it was bittersweet.
After the service, my dad and I went to the front of the sanctuary to get prayer for me and this phase of my life. My senior pastor, my MC director, and my former teacher and current pastor prayed for me. It was truly amazing, because these men of God prayed for me exactly what my heart has been crying out for in regards to this journey. They prayed that I would change the campus, instead of the campus changing me. They prayed that I would remain firm in my identity as a confident, outgoing woman of God. They prayed that I would become a deep, connected part of the church body near my school, and that I would always remember “the rock from which I was cut” and remember my roots at my home church. They prayed that I would press deeper into the Lord as I experience all the new things that I’m going to experience.
And with those prayers, I feel a finality come over me. It wasn’t entirely real to me until today. Even at a week left, I was still in a little bit of a haze about the reality of my leaving. But now that I've been prayed for and sent, and that I've said goodbye and “see you at Family Camp" to almost everyone I know, it’s really real to me. And I don’t know how I feel about that.
My BFF is deeply saddened, and I’m sorry to leave her. My parents are more quiet about me leaving; they make comments here and there so I know they do feel it, but I’m honestly dreading next Sunday. I know that there will be tears on both ends, and I think my parents and I are all the kind of people who cry more when they see other people cry, as if we weren't crying enough by ourselves!
And to top this all off, this evening I saw my grandparents for the last time before Christmas. As I wrote about previously, my grandpa has Alzheimer’s, so it’s difficult to say goodbye. And my grandma has been so incredible and strong, and I had to say goodbye to her, and it just about killed me. If I didn’t have a friend over, I probably would have gone to my room and sobbed.
So as much as I’m excited for this new adventure, I’m dreading saying goodbye. Wednesday night and Sunday night are going to be the hardest… I really don’t know how I’m going to get up the next morning and keep going. BUT GOD is good, and so I know that, somehow, I will get up and keep going.
On that happy note, I’m going to finish this post and go read Les Miserables. Ironic, I know. I’m not miserable, though. Just missing people…goodbye for now.