With Every Goodbye, You Learn – Reprise

On a cold day in 2018, my daughter asked me if she could write my blog that week. When she told me her idea about temporary people and why she wanted to write it, I was amazed by her insight, wisdom, and faith. I was even more amazed when I read her words. Many times over the past four years, I have thought back on this blog and the impact it had on me and others.

This Friday, the third book in my Buffalo Springs series will be released. Much of the story was inspired by my daughter’s blog. Throughout the story, the characters learn to embrace my daughter’s wisdom, and their lives are richer and more meaningful as a result.

In honor of the release of Sapphires in Snow, I’m re-sharing Rebecca’s blog. I know it will impact you as much as it did me. If you’re reading it for the second time, perhaps it will have an even deeper meaning for you today.

I hope you enjoy this beautiful blog written by my daughter, Rebecca:

When I was in first grade, my best friend was constantly bullied. She had a rare medical condition that made her an easy target for the kids in our class. They were horrible to her, but she taught me what it meant to be a true friend. She brought out something else in me that those other kids would try to take away, but that I would carry with me for the rest of my life. Eventually, we grew apart, and I haven’t spoken to her in years.

When I was in fourth grade, I was the one who was struggling. My teacher saw something in me and challenged me. He was one of those people who you knew you could trust immediately, and he was so kind to all of his students, regardless of their own imperfections. He showed me what a true role model looked like and made me feel like I could accomplish anything. Eventually, I left that school, and I haven’t seen him since.

Rebecca and Scott

When I was in high school, I dated a boy named Scott who would teach me what love felt like. He showed me how great this world could be if I didn’t take myself too seriously and if I always found something to laugh at through every tough situation. He gave me that crazy kind of love that everyone knew wouldn’t last, but he made me feel something I had never felt before. Eventually, we grew apart. He took his own life a few years ago. I hadn’t seen him in years.

During and since college, I’ve lost many friends for a variety of reasons. Some good, some bad, but every single one of them taught me what it meant to be there for someone. Some of them taught me what to avoid in a friend, some of them inspired me to fight for a better version of myself, and some of them pushed me outside of my comfort zone in ways I could never imagine. Many of those friends I haven’t seen in years, either.

I could go on, and on, and on. If there’s one thing I’ve learned so far, it’s that this life is full of temporary people.

It’s taken me a long time to come to terms with the people that I’ve lost. Especially in those months following Scott’s death, I didn’t know how to handle it at all. I had gotten over him in a romantic sense, but I always thought that he would casually come back into my life one day. It took me a really, really long time to be able to cope with the fact that I would never see him again, and sometimes it’s still extremely difficult.

In order to overcome these feelings, I took it to prayer. One day, I realized: the most temporary person in the Bible was absolutely one of the most important.

“As they led him away they took hold of a certain Simon, a Cyrenian, who was coming in from the country; and after laying the cross on him, they made him carry it behind Jesus.” Luke 23:26

As Jesus’ burden of carrying his cross was becoming heavier and heavier, Simon was there. Simon originally had no intention of helping Jesus, and Jesus certainly did not expect Simon to come into his life. Simon knew Jesus for a matter of minutes, but helped Jesus during his most vulnerable time. Simon literally carried the burden for Jesus.

I think we all are destined to have a Simon in life. We are all destined to have someone walk into our lives at the most unexpected moment and help us through burdens we simply cannot bear on our own. God puts temporary people into our lives on purpose. We aren’t supposed to always understand why, and we definitely don’t know when a person is destined to become temporary until they are gone.

Simon carries the cross

As humans, we don’t have to deal with our burdens alone. Sometimes it takes a brand new person to walk into our lives and help us through those burdens. And when that person leaves, only then will we realize how strong, how brave we’ve really become.

With this thought in mind, it’s a lot easier to deal with the fact that I’ll never see Scott again, or that I have no idea what my first-grade best friend’s life is like now, or that I’ll probably never spend time with my college best friend again, or that the teacher who saw something in me that no one else did probably doesn’t even remember my name.

Each of those people came into my life for a purpose, and that purpose just didn’t need to last forever.

Losing people is hard, but knowing that the loss was for a reason helps me keep my faith alive. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without the temporariness of the people who shaped me in ways I cannot describe. I don’t think I would be as strong as I am today if those people had stuck around.

I’d give anything to go back in time and see those people again, or to tell them that I love them while I still have the chance. But life doesn’t work that way, and I know now that in this moment, I need to treat every person I come into contact with as if it’s the last time I’ll see them. I need to thank them for helping me in my most vulnerable time and for carrying my burden when I needed it most.

Tell her you love her before you hang up the phone, make plans with your friends every chance you get, tell your professors how instrumental they’ve been, and smile at a stranger today.

Each of these precious moments won’t last forever, but they will shape you.

“And you learn, and you learn, with every goodbye, you learn.” – After a While, Veronica A. Shoffstall

Evelyn's Baptism

Rebecca Schisler-Adams, when she wrote this, was a rising second-year law student at the Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law. She still loves kayaking, hiking, and all things outdoors. In her spare time, she still likes learning new cooking techniques and binge-watching Master Chef. Today, she is an attorney, happily married, and the mother of a beautiful one-month-old daughter.

I am still amazed by her wisdom and resilience every day.

Meet Amy in Person!

Write What You Know Writer’s Workshop

November 12, 2022 – 10:00am-12 Noon – Leonardtown Library, Leonardtown, MD

Amy will be giving a workshop for NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). She will talk about how to write a more authentic and readable novel by writing about what you know – the people, places, and events that have shaped your own life. Click here for more information and to register.

Eastern Shore Sea Glass & Coastal Arts Festival

November 19, 10am-4pm & November 20 10am-3pm – Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, St. Michaels, MD

Amy will be selling and signing her books at the annual event just in time for Christmas! The Festival will feature artisans from around the country selling coastal and sea-glass related jewelry, home décor, art, and more. The two-day festival ticket includes entrance to the festival, live music, and all the exhibitions and historic structures on the campus of the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum.

Bay to Ocean Writer’s Conference

March 4, 2023 8am-4pm – Chesapeake College, Wye Mills, MD

Amy will be presenting a workshop titled Write What You Know. the workshop will focus on\ how to write a more authentic and readable novel by writing about what you know – the people, places, and events that have shaped your own life. 

The 26th annual Bay to Ocean Writers Conference will be held on Saturday, March 4, 2023 at Chesapeake College in Wye Mills, MD. Organized and sponsored by the nonprofit Eastern Shore Writers Association, BTO is dedicated to helping writers improve their craft by providing first-rate educational sessions and inspirational tips across a variety of writing genres. Registration cominig soon!

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Amy Schisler is an award-winning author of both children’s books and sweet, faith-filled romance novels for readers of all ages. She lives with her husband and three daughters on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Her books, Picture MeWhispering Vines, and Island of Miracles are all recipients of Illumination Awards, placing them among the top inspirational fiction books of 2015, 2016, and 2017. Whispering Vines was awarded the 2017 LYRA Award for the best romance of 2016. The Good Wine, the sequel to Whispering Vines was released in June of 2021. Island of Miracles has outsold all of Amy’s other books worldwide and ranked as high as 600 on Amazon. Her follow up, Island of Promise is a reader favorite. Amy’s children’s chapter book is The Greatest Gift, and her most recent suspense novel is Summer’s Squall

Amy’s second book in the Chincoteague Island Trilogy, Island of Promise, was awarded First Prize by the Oklahoma Romance Writer’s Association as the best Inspirational Romance of 2018 and was awarded a Gold Medal in the Independent Publisher Book Awards 2019 for Inspirational Fiction. It is the 2019 winner for Best Inspirational Fiction in the RWA Golden Quill Contest, Best Romance in the American Book Awards, and a finalist for the Eric Hoffer Award of Fiction. Amy’s 2019 work, The Devil’s Fortune, a finalist in the Writer’s Digest Self-Publishing Awards and winner of an Illumination Award, is based, in part, on Amy’s family history. The third book in Amy’s Chincoteague Island Trilogy,  Island of Hope, was released in August of 2019. Amy’s book, Desert Fire, Mountain Rain begins her new Buffalo Springs series. Book two, Under the Summer Moon, was released in December of 2021. 

Amy’s new book, Seeking Tranquility, was released on June 15, 2022. Buy your copy now!

You may follow Amy on Facebook at http://facebook.com/amyschislerauthor, Twitter @AmySchislerAuth, Goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/amyschisler and at http://amyschislerauthor.com.

Amy’s books: Crabbing With Granddad (2013), A Place to Call Home (2014), Picture Me (2015), Whispering Vines (2016), Island of Miracles (2017), Stations of the Cross Meditations for Moms (2017), The Greatest Gift (2017), Summer’s Squall (2017), Island of Promise (2018), The Devil’s Fortune (2019), Island of Hope (2019), A Devotional Alphabet (2019), Desert Fire, Mountain Rain(2020), The Good Wine (2021), Under the Summer Moon (2021), Meet the Saints From A-Z, A Child’s Introduction to the Saints (2022), Seeking Tranquility (2022), Sapphires in Snow (2022).