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Reducing goodbyes: my new mission

I have realized my dream of spending several months in my beloved Tuscan home.

And here is my new mission: reducing goodbyes.

I practice Linguistic Empathy and I expect you to do the same. Please bear with me if my English is not perfect.

Up to last year, the moment I closed my Tuscan home was a bit of a tragedy. We started preparing it for the long winter two days before leaving. We gathered all things used during the month we had spent there as a family, cleaned, washed, covered the furniture.

Then the moment arrived to store all things we used outside – tables, chairs, laundry hangers – and close the wooden shutters. Power, water and gas turned off, my husband closed the main door of the house.

 

 

My sons knew that for me the drama started there. They patiently waited for me in the car while I made the last tour to say goodbye to the house.

It was so painful to see it closed and barren, after she had gathered our laughter, friends, games, so many beautiful moments of life together.

The knot in my throat suffocated me, and once I got into the car, I could not control the tears, always followed by the same sentence: “I do not want to leave”.

 

My family patiently waited for me to regain composure. While I watched the wooden trail I so much love, I also saw what was in store for me ahead: a return, new professional adventures, friends in the world. I arrived at the top of the trail more or less cheered up and ready to face one year far from my beloved home.

This year things went very differently. When the holiday family ended, we did not close the house because I will go back.
I will go back and stay as long as I can. When I prepare it and close it for the winter, I know it will be for a few months only, because I do not intend to go and live far away.

One of the priorities on my list to reach my husband abroad in a future mission, is that the destination must be sufficiently close to my sons, my mother and my Tuscan home.

 

Photo by Keith Bremner

 

This has changed it all, and has helped me understand the deep meaning of my not wanting to live thousands of miles away any more.

Goodbyes hurt more and more. Possibly because as years go by, I have to say more and more of them. Maybe priorities change and things that matter to me change with them. Or I may have already said too many goodbyes in my life.

Be as it is, I clearly grasped this when I closed my Tuscan house this year and got into the car without looking back and crying.

You might argue that closing a home where you go back to is not a goodbye. And you are right. But goodbyes have become so tough for me, that any departure immediately evokes the same kind anguish.

 

Photo by Rossella Buri

That is the moment I want to avoid, the detachment. Because even if in many cases it is only temporary, it makes me go back to so many other goodbyes – to countries, people, homes, offices, groups, animals, situations – that hurt deeply.

My new mission is that of reducing goodbyes as much as I can. Life already imposes her goodbyes, let me do what I can to reduce mine.

 

Claudia Landini
October 2018

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