I have always hated saying goodbye. I know from experience that when people that I have grown close to move away, the relationship is effectively over. Sure some folks stay in communication for a time afterwards through the usual social media outlets, but usually over a period of a few months, the frequency of such contacts becomes less and less, until one day they stop altogether. It seems to me that when folks no longer have face to face contact, the intimacy level falls below the threshold level necessary for a viable and sustainable relationship. With everything else in our lives that demands our attention and our time, out of sight means out of mind. It is the chirping bird that gets the relational worm.
Interestingly, I have found in the nearly 6 years that I have been blogging, that I have developed several relationships with folks that I have never met. I regularly visit their sites and they regularly visit mine. You can definitely get the measure of a person, their breadth and depth, by interacting and exchanging ideas one paragraph at a time. However, whether the time frame is six months or ten years, folks seem to run out of steam and their blogging stars wink out. Eventually, we all will run out of anecdotes to relate or stories to tell. Usually you can see the tell-tale signs of the end game pretty clearly. Folks who used to post regularly, suddenly lose their rhythm. They begin to go days between posts and those that do show up are hastily prepared and flat. For them, the countdown has commenced. You can just about hear them grinding their wheels trying to decide if they have the desire to keep at it.
In the end a cost-benefit analysis needs to be considered. When the hassle of writing, posting, and interacting becomes more of a chore than a pleasure, it is time to stop. I can image that walking away from something like this, especially when you have worked hard at it, kind of leaves you feeling uneasy and a bit melancholy. From the folks who I have gotten to know who have moved onto other things, I notice your absence and hate having to say another goodbye.
This post is dedicated to those I encountered along the way, Paul, Kevin, Brian, and Bill, among others.