Tracy Quartermaine is leaving General Hospital. And I am sobbing. Tracy Quartermaine is a fictional character on a soap opera and I am wailing. “No, Tracy Quartermaine, please don’t leave us! You’re breaking my heart!” To say goodbyes aren’t my strong point is an understatement. Guess what? Nobody likes goodbyes. A good friend’s mother passed away in Trinidad this week. The rituals following the funeral take two weeks. In Mexico, its nine days. In the Jewish religion, there is the seven day mourning period known as Shiva. We all have an extended mourning period to say good bye. We need that time to come to terms with absence and loss and change. And this doesn’t only apply when a loved one passes away. I recently finished the second production with the Community Synagogue Theatre Company. Since the last curtain came down, we have had an adult cast party, a cast dinner, an upcoming cast gathering to view the video, countless Karaoke nights, and a girls night out to say goodbye to one of our loved ones who is moving away. We adore each other. We miss each other. We can’t believe we are not going to see each other three times a week for eternity. But the days pass, and we get together less, and we work and plan vacations and deal with children and honor commitments and live life. Until the next time, when we will squeal, and embrace and scoop up children who have grown six inches in the last year and start all over again. Life will always include goodbyes. Some are temporary. Some are not. The trick is to not look back and be sad for what is gone, but to be grateful for what was here, to embrace what is happening now, and hopeful for what will come. Thanks for the memories, Tracy Quartermaine.