I received an email from someone very special tonight, and I hope that “someone” won’t mind me sharing it with you.  It goes something like this:

……it’s starting to hit. really, really hard.

i miss everyone so much.

i’m not looking forward to anything.

i don’t feel comfortable anywhere…

i dont have a home anymore. 
i don’t know if i can do this, mich. 
i miss you……..

It struck me as I read (through tears) that this person’s emotions might mirror the emotions of many others, and it was of all of you that I thought as I typed my response:

It’s okay for it to hit…this is exactly when it should.

Of course you miss everyone–
let those feelings happen, but don’t lose yourself in them.

You don’t know what’s ahead, so how could you possibly look forward to anything?  …and that’s okay right now.

You are between homes, between “belongings”, so it’s understandable that you can’t feel comfortable anywhere.

You do have a home, a new home.  But you’re just on your way to it and it might take a while to get there.  This is the journey that leads to new “belonging”.  And the destination, in time, will be worth the pain of the beginning.

You CAN do this.  You’re not losing it.  You’re not weak.  You are being emotionally honest about a very real stage of your life, a stage rife with change, unpredictability, and therefore fear.

But you’ll get through it.  And it’s okay to feel scared or forlorn or empty until then.  Just don’t let those emotions suffocate the “survivor” in you.  Force yourself to look for positives, to project optimistically, and find a way to put emotional energy you don’t think you have into meeting new people, creating a new comfort zone, and digging down roots in this unfamiliar soil.

And once all the newness and unknownness and forlornness have eased, you might find yourself in a place that’s beginning to feel a bit like home….

My love to each of you.  I pray for you often and think wistfully of those departed ones who have left such a gaping hole in the spaces of my heart.  You will not be forgotten.

With love,

Misch, Meech, Mich, Michou, Mitch, Shell, Shelley and Michele

PS:  Below are three wonderful grads who prove that there is LIFE (full, fun, challenging, hopeful, daunting, exasperating, joyful life) after BFA.  They’d probably tell you that the journey has been riddled with unexpected potholes and unpredicted speed bumps, but that the rewards have started to outweigh the challenges…and that’s what the trip is all about.



  1. Super!  Thank you so much for sharing your heart and your insights with so many fantastic young people who are transitioning into high quality adults.  Thanks too for your kind words of encourgement to us!

  2. Mich, I was planning on sharing it with you!!!!!!!  didn’t you know?!?  Really!  I love you and see ya SOON!  So much to talk about!!!!

  3. you’re the best. always know the right things to say!

    i AM excited for another year and so glad you’ll be here for the girls as well! here’s to another precious year with our storch chickies.

  4. It’s like you’re speaking to the very depth of me right now…how am I supposed to know how to act around people when so much of me is in these girls that are blown and scattered across the world? Everything reminds me of you guys, darnit I picked up a yogurt and laughed because of course that reminded me of Liz and our stupid Yoplait joke.
    Michelle, I love love love you! Thank you so much for caring, for investing so much of yourself into us even though you knew we would be taken away so soon. You are such an example to me.
    Did I mention I love you?

  5. michele… I learned something… there’s so much I need to tell you.. are you still in canada or are you back in riedlingen?

  6. Michele..oh dear. I was trying to think of the right name for your Xanga site to type into the “Go” bar. I tried Serenity_Mine first. Oh dear. I thought that you had kidney failure, but when the author of that site started talking about missing alcohol I became suspicious. Have a great day!

  7. thanks for the encouragement! and we appreciate the “sameness” of having you around to invest in the kids as well. i do hope it works out for you to come twice a week again…it’s so nice to have not only your help with baking those yummy goods but also in offering your endless wisdom and intellect as well  – and not just to the kids – I need that too!! 🙂  

  8. Mich, I thought of you right away with the movie!!!  Somehow I knew you would LOVE it!  I am probably way too dense and dull, but what do you mean by “iron flowers”?  I know it has some very deep significant meaning that I am probably missing or it is incredibly witty. HELP!  I love you, dear friend!

  9. I would contend with you on one point. The ‘someone’ just like the rest of us, has the same home as always. It’s times like these that help us remember that, though.

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