Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Seeking Closure

While sometimes things are better left unsaid, more often than not closure is a good thing. Closure brings finality to the end of a relationship, agreement, arrangement or understanding. It clears out the cobwebs of words left unspoken, gestures not returned and comments not made nor taken back. It leaves both parties with their questions answered or resolved. Or at best, it brings acceptance that some questions never will be or perhaps simply can never be answered. The end of a friendship can be like that. Like the friends I made in Europe who stayed in place while I moved back to the states.

Unfortunately, there have been a number of involvements in my life that ended rather abruptly or without closure. Recently, I wrote about ‘Ghosting’ in my November 12th blog. Those relationships, agreements, or arrangements ended rather abruptly and without a clear explanation of ‘what happened.’

Me and My Mother
With her strong German heritage and stoic parental upbringing, my mother never talked about ‘personal things.’ In another blog ‘Hilde and the Old Man,’ I explored my mother’s fascinating upbringing that I never knew anything about until late in her life. As the end got closer, my mother slowly started to reveal things about her life and background growing up. But by that time, she was too far gone (in terms of mental lucidness) to have a really clear, succinct grasp of her past. Her memory was slowly failing and her stories kept contradicting themselves and causing only more confusion and doubt.

Me and My Father

My father died when I was six years old and for twenty-one years his name was never mentioned in our home. I never knew anything about my father so there was nothing to bring closure to that relationship. No chance of ever figuring that connection out. Therefore, I never had closure with my Mother or my Father.

Me and Mickey
I’ve experienced that same ‘failure to close’ with some past relationships and partnerships. There were words left unspoken, feelings left unanswered and questions still dangling in space. Growing up, there were friends who slowly but surely went their own way. There were school mates who promised to be there forever until we both faced graduation. There were job partners who stuck around when I moved on to something better.


Me with Pat
There were romantic entanglements that began in colorful hues and tints of spring. Then at some point gradually began to fade in the harshness of our collective conflicting feelings for each other and the future.

St. Thomas Yearbook

Maryland Center Gang
Then there have been a number of events and episodes in my life that came to a natural conclusion and it was a good final good-bye. Some past jobs simply ran their course and we parted on mutually agreeable terms. Phases in my life like real estate investments, producing, and marketing video programs and athletic endeavors all gradually ran their course and new opportunities took their place.

I read a million years ago that ‘if you’re in a good place’ in your life now, then you can look back at all those things that worked and didn’t work. The goals accomplished and failures along the way. You can summarize your past openly, honestly and without regret because in the end, it just life playing itself out again. That’s where I’m at now.

As Woody Guthrie immortalized in a song, ‘So long, it’s been good to know ya.’ It’s been one heck of a wonderful trip thus far and I hope for many more miles to go.

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