As a Military-Brat I know the pain that can be found in saying 'goodbye', whether a PCS on my family's part or a friend's family moving away. The tears, the fear of the future, the feeling of losing friends for forever. There was nothing easy about it but I do believe it influenced who I am, for the better.
In 1984 my family PCSed from Lubbock, Texas (since closed Reese AFB) to Scott AFB, Illinois. I had my first real best-friend in Lubbock & it was my first real 'goodbye'. We stayed pen-pals (this was before the world of email) for quite some time afterwards but at some point, many years later, even the letters stopped between us. We sadly lost touch.
So here I sit 25 years later looking at a friend request on Facebook from none other than that very dear childhood friend. How very excited I am to have her back in my world, albeit the Facebook world, but it is still part of my life.
Each time I "run into" an old friend on Facebook (or Twitter or myspace or simply email) my heart is filled with joy and my memories take me back to those years; my years in Texas, Illinois, Florida, New York, Iceland... (the list seems impossibly endless). It certainly makes me happy that I didn't burn bridges. These are the people I grew up with. They are friends. They are a part of my history and even who I am now.
If you are starting the process of saying goodbye, recognize that "Good-bye" is not permanent. It is a big deal, but stay in touch. Keep the fire of friendship alive. Think about all of the new friends you will make in the next few months and into years.
- Leanne from MilitaryAvenue.com
PS: We have quite a list of resources on MilitaryAvenue for preparing for your next PCS: PCS Central. As well, if you have a question about your future destination pull up to MilitaryAvenue Answers and ask away. Someone out there has been in your shoes & will be willing to help. The Military Family is just that ... family, no matter what lies around the next corner.