I was recently talking with a couple who told me that when their son first watched The Fox and the Hound, he cried. Apparently, their son continued to watch The Fox and the Hound regularly…and each time he would cry.
If sadness is expected, why not try to avoid it?
If you’re a TCK, you know that one sadness you will continue to re-experience is saying goodbye to people you care about. So, do you avoid it? Or do you embrace it?
It’s hard for me to admit, but I am a terrible friend. I subconsciously enter a relationship (friend or otherwise) with a little scale that measures the chances that the other person will stay in my life or just leave. If the person tells me that they’re “just here for the summer” or “heading to college in the fall” or “looking for jobs in California”, then I tend to put up a wall, whether I realize it or not. I’m not mean about it. I still interact with them, ask them about their week, smile, and all that polite stuff. I may even enjoy seeing them from time to time, but something stops me from making an effort to move beyond that context. And….this sounds awful…I can choose not to care.
Last year I started meeting regularly with a group of ladies around my age from my church. As time moved on, I began to know them more personally and hear about their struggles and their dreams. And it made me feel sick. I couldn’t tell why my stomach would squirm and my chest would feel heavy every time I was around these ladies. After all, they were amazing! It was a prayer answered to have such amazing women by my side. But a voice inside me said, “Get out, get out now!”
I imagined the moment of telling my group that I wouldn’t be joining them anymore, and I imagined the relief that I would feel to no longer be attached to them. But another part of me didn’t want to leave these friends I had just made. Why should I leave good friends when I JUST found them? I asked myself. Because it’s easier to be the one that leaves first.
I am so thankful that I recognized these emotions before I officially “broke-up” with my group. These friends have been such a blessing to me. Will they be here forever? No. I know that. and that makes me a little nervous sometimes. I’m still working on my heart, but I’ll tell you now that by being conscious of my emotions and reactions, I have been able to be wiser in my relationship choices. I’m very conscious of the friendships I start and the ones that I allow to fall away. Because I don’t want to avoid a relationship out of fear, and I don’t want to commit to a relationship I know I’m not ready for.
This post is mostly about my experience, but in the next post, I’ll explain more about how TCKs may specifically struggle with commitment, and how we can seek guidance from examples in the Bible.
Would you begin a relationship (friendship or otherwise) if you knew the other person would be leaving?
If you answered yes, maybe you also have the answer to why people watch depressing movies over and over again?!