IT’S SO HARD TO SAY GOODBYE. . .( except when you don’t really have to 🙂 )
That’s the title of the song that is ringing around in my mind right now. Cause it is, ya know? Saying goodbye can be difficult especially when it’s to a long time friend, but at least the rough edges of sadness are buffed a bit in this case.
Let me explain.
Our blog began two years ago. Right from the start we enlisted the help of one of my dear friends; a friend that you have come to know and love around here.
Rachel Anne Ridge.
Through her thoughtful posts on everything from loss and love to flip-flops and flowers, she has enlightened us, challenged us, made us laugh and kept this blog ship afloat when my schedule would have never allowed.
She has edited my mis-spellings and added graphics and gorgeous design to my otherwise bland posts, making the entire blog inviting and fun for all of us. We’ve been so blessed by her presence on this little start-up community but the time has come for us to say, “Farewell” (except not).
The reality is – Rachel is moving on (virtually speaking). The demands of maintaining our blog AND her own while taking care of her family and balancing her real-life job have taken their toll. So, she’ll need to lay down her blogging “pen” here at Going Beyond but she won’t be far away.
I mean, literally, she just won’t be.
She lives across the street from me and is one of my favorite “let’s go see a movie” or “let’s go grab a quick dessert” partners. So, while she won’t be a regular anymore on the Going Beyond website, I’ll still be seeing her quite frequently and so can you.
You’ll always find her in your neighborhood too at www.homesanctuary.com where her musings on the beauty of home and family life are timeless.
Take a moment to read her comments below and then let’s send her off with some well wishes. She’ll be blessed to read them.
Rachel, what has been your favorite part of writing the Going Beyond Blog?
I’ve loved feeling connected with the “Going Beyonders!” Priscilla has such a way of connecting with women through her speaking and writing, and getting to be a part of something that is so much bigger than anything I could imagine has been really exciting. I’ve had lots of freedom to write about anything from purses to pursuing God, and that has been awesome!
What has been the more interesting characteristic that you’ve noticed about the women who’ve been commenting to your posts?
The biggest thing I’ve noticed is that there is a huge mix of women – from every age group, ethnicity and season of life. From college women to grandmothers, these ladies might be at very different stages of life, but there is a common thread that connects them. They are serious about God….and hair. Ha! I’ve learned a lot about black hair and how hard it is to “go natural” and it’s been SO FUN to converse about simple stuff that us girls care about, as well as the deeper issues of the heart. The women here are earnestly seeking God’s will and purposes, and wanting to live a life that glorifies Him. I am always moved and humbled by the stories and the wisdom that “our” women have shared through their comments.
What was the theme that seemed to garner the most response and capture people’s attention the most? Why do you think it did?
Well, I always want to be very real and honest in my blog posts. Sometimes that’s not very pretty, because my own journey of faith has not always been full of glorious victory. My faith has faltered at times and I’ve failed more often than I care to admit. But I really feel that we are all in this together…..and if people only see the good stuff, the happy achievements and victories, then we all miss out on the incredible truth of God’s grace. I think the “best” blog posts are the ones that let people see your honest journey….and how God is actively working in your life, often in spite of yourself.
Why are you having to lay down your position as blog writer for Going Beyond?
I’m a huge believer in “seasons of life!” My season as a mom to my three kids is rapidly coming to an end, with my youngest child a senior in high school this year. Boo!! I really want to savor this last year, and God has been moving on me to let some of my outside responsibilities go so I can focus on getting this boy out the door – ready to take on the world. I’m stepping away from several things….but probably the hardest is this blog. I have put my heart and soul into seeing it get off the ground, so it is tough to say “good bye!”
But can I just say….being a mom to these kids has been the greatest gift ever. Parenting is the hardest fun you can ever have…and now that I am at the end of it, I have some perspective that I didn’t have in those preschool/early days. My favorite parenting verse is: Gal. 6:9 “Let us not become weary in well-doing, for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” We’ve put in some hard work, but have definitely reaped a harvest with our family. When you are in the thick of changing diapers and wiping noses, you can’t always see the beauty that is happening…but it is there, and it will unfold as time goes on. Sometimes you’ve just got to cling to the hope that God is going to be faithful to you as you struggle along in the day-to-day……and He will be. There is no greater joy than seeing your kids grow in their own faith and become amazing young adults! It is a long journey, but worth every step.
Will you still be a part of Going Beyond Ministries in another capacity?
If being Going Beyond’s #1 Fan counts, then YES! I love what Priscilla and the team are doing and how God is using this ministry all over the world. It has been exciting to see how things have grown – and wow, what a privilege it has been to be part of it. I have offered to carry luggage for the Shirer’s on their next trip to Sydney or London, so we’ll see if they’ll hire me for that job. 🙂
Thank you all so much for being part of my daily life for the past two years! It has been an honor to meet with you here each day, and I look forward to continuing to be part of this blog as a commenter….and perhaps an occasional guest blogger from time to time. I’LL MISS YOU!!!!
We love you Rachel. Thank you for everything!