Goodbyes

I have always been a theater fan, and I love musicals. I’m kind of an little old lady now, so as you can imagine, I have seen quite a few of them over the years.

Fiddler of the Roof has remained my absolute favorite, even after all the time that has passed since the first time I saw it.

I never have gotten to see it on Broadway–I have never even been to New York City. My first encounter with it was the movie, which came out when I was in Junior High. I was enchanted.

I still am.

Years later, my then-husband had knee surgery in Jackson, Wyoming, and while he was recuperating we went to see a local production of the play. He had never seen a musical on stage, and he, too was enchanted.

It’s that sort of story, the one that hits you right in the feels. Children growing up, falling in love, leaving home. Strife in the community. Strife in the world. This one never gets old or loses relevance.

And, oh! The music!

The magic of video streaming means I can watch this whenever I want, and I watch it all the time. Every song is a delight. A couple are tear-jerkers.

This one always gets me, though. “Far From the Home I Love” has struck me in different ways over the years.

As a kid, the first time I heard this song, I swore I would never put my father through the pain of saying goodbye to me.

Of course, I did. I didn’t stay home forever. Every move took me further and further away.

As a parent, every time one of my own children moved away, this song came to mind. I would remind myself that they had their own lives, their own loves and that going away might be best for them, no matter how I felt about it.

Saying goodbye is hard. Staying “home” isn’t always possible. I think we all have gone through the feeling of wanting to stay and wanting to go at the same time. It is not easy.

Right now, I spend most of my time with my parents. When I go home, saying goodbye is especially hard. Although my plan is always a week away at most, I do have to face the fact that they are in their 80s, and there is a chance I won’t see them again. For that matter, I could disappear from this life myself and they could live into their 100s.

For whatever reason, when I say goodbye to them, this is the song playing in my head. When I say goodbye to a child or grandchild, I hear this song.

I always have hope in the words, “There, with my love, I’m home.”

Have a listen. Have hope.

Far From the Home I Love

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