Next week, a good friend of mine will be moving to south Florida. Her kids actually left last month to spend time with their Dad in Georgia. Then last night, we broke the news to Stinky and Blinky that the family up the street will be moving to southwest Florida next month. Although we had been expecting this, the news still hit pretty hard.
Life in our small town is not easy. The natives are very tribal and are not welcoming to newcomers, regardless of race. Most of our friends tend to be imports like us, or transients waiting for something better to come along. As such, it seems like we're always saying goodbye. We are lacking the stability of long-standing friendships and watching our children grow with the same group of kids. It absolutely broke my heart when my daughter asked, "Why do all our friends move away?"
As I tried to console my children last night, I told them we can pray for another nice family with school-aged children to replace our neighbors and enjoy getting to know them. That's about all we can do.
If you are reading this, I hope you are encouraged to reach out to a neighbor or a colleague with young children, especially if they are transplants. A little kindness goes a long way.