Tuesday, June 07, 2005

"Never say 'Good-bye'"

Why do people have such a hard time saying, "good-bye"?

I am one for whom the show "24 Hours" was written. Semi-Sci-Fi, action, suspense, intrigue, guns & technology, etc. I actually enjoy the fact that it's not real - that it could only be kind'of real at best. That's why I was a little surprised at the last episode this season. In a 100% fictitious world, created by the creators/writers, they STILL could not figure out how to say, "good-bye." What happens when the main character has to stop his own heart, get revived, sneak out of headquarters, and move to Canada, all to prevent the Chinese from capturing him? His best friend says, "Hey Jack. . . take care of yourself."


The honestly can't write a better good-bye?!? So then I really started paying attention to this perhaps U.S. phenomenon. Sure enough, it's everywhere. People cannot say good-bye without acknowledging the next time-of-connection (e.g. see you tomorrow, see you next week, see you soon, see ya'). Or even the "I'll call you" or "I'll catch up with you" - no idea if much less when this will happen, but it's vital that some kind of next-action is taken.

Then there is death, perhaps the most focused "good-bye." And seemingly the most difficult. Take away the finality of death, the changes that occur in one's schedule and life. Just knowing what to say: as one is dying as well as once someone is dead. I wonder if some of the difficulty is because we never really say "good-bye" during daily living.

I think back on times when I have said "good-bye" to someone I was never going to see again. Kind'of like death, but social convention requires that I say it to someone who can respond back to me!!

I am choosing to learn how to say, or perhaps even moreso, be comfortable with "good-bye." I'm going to learn how to sincerely say the words without reservation nor qualification. I'm going to accept that there is a breaking, that this breaking is natural, and I'm going to live as if the break might be permanent - all subsequent reconnections, then, are to be celebrated and enjoyed.

But why do people in the Western World have such a hard time saying "the words"?

1 comment:

John Lynch said...

What do you think about the idea that maybe we were never meant to experience permanent separations?