14 Jun 2014

Today’s Life Lesson: It’s Not Good Bye. It’s See You Later. (Among Other Lessons Learned From A Military Family)

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Teaching life lessons to our kids seems to come more often as they get older. Maybe that’s because they understand better and can actually comprehend what is going on, now that they are the wise old age of 8.

So today’s life lesson, is a hard pill to swallow. At least at first. And it’s never easy, even as a grown-up. We say good-bye to dear friends today as they move on to a new chapter. This will be a difficult friend for Mia to say good-bye too as it was her first friend in Kindergarten. The one she couldn’t stop talking about when she came home. The tears will come from both her and I, but the lesson for the day will be “Remember, it’s not good-bye…It’s see you later.”

Mia and I were fortunate enough to meet Nikki and Zoe at Mia’s first “Kindergarten Welcome Party” three years ago. They were new in town and Mia had already talked up Zoe as her new BFF right away. We chatted about where they were from and raising girls. They seemed (and were) such nice people that I was excited about our new friendships.

In Kidville, sometimes kids get along great, however parents might not get along as much as the kids. It’s always evident who gets along with who, as the parents that get along best typically end up hanging out together more as the parents get a treat to hang around each other too. Just the way things work.

I LOVED this Mom. She taught me a lot in here short three years in Tampa. She might not have known it but I hope to carry some life lessons I’ve learned along the rest of my life, only because of her, as well as her family.

Being a military family, I had never really known one, so learning what they have to do, sacrifice and how they do it was all new to me. Nikki is one amazing woman as she has carried this honor with the utmost pride I have ever seen, and I am thankful for all she and her husband and her family do for ours.

I learned they move every three years. Might seem quick, but it’s REALLY quick. I can’t believe their time here is already up.

I bonded with Nikki over Girl Scouts from the beginning. I was starting a troop for the Kindergarten class and Zoe was already a year into Girl Scouts and was planning on joining. Here’s where I learn lesson number two. I knew nothing about Girl Scouting before this first year, three years ago. Nikki said that the Girl
Scouts were a great way for her girls to make friends and be familiar with something constant, even as they would move. Now, three years later, and SO many wonderful memories with Nikki and Zoe later, I see how impactful and what great values Girl Scouts teaches girls that I hope all my daughters can experience this and make new friends along the way. It was because of Nikki that I got more involved but was really able to see what great things this organization does for girls.

“Make new friends, but keep the old… One is silver and the other’s gold.”


Nikki came to the hospital and saw Abby immediately after she was born. Her youngest, Zoe was able to hold a new baby. The girls have come to each other’s birthdays for the past three years and Nikki even hand sewed a beautiful quilt for Abby that I will always treasure. Friendships were made. Memories were made. And for this I am forever thankful.

I saw Nikki a lot over the last three years at school and the campus won’t be as bright with out her there next year. We didn’t hang out outside of school all the time (I wish we had lived closer) but I’m so thankful that our lives crossed paths for many reasons. I have a new appreciation for her and other military families and what they do for our country. She has shown me strength of family and that no matter what, you do what’s best for yours.

As for her sweet girls, they couldn’t be raised with better values and I’m so glad that my Mia and Shelby have became such great friends with her children.

“A circle is round, it has no end…That’s how long I want to be your friend.”

Best of luck to these lovely ladies whom I’m blessed to have met and crossed paths with on this journey of life! I hope (and know) there was a reason and I’m sure we will see each other again! It’s not good bye. It’s see you later.


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Marisa is a Mama to 4 kids and resides in Tampa, Florida with her family. Connect with her on Twitter @TampaMama to learn more about Tampa Bay and things to do with kids, Florida family travel, travel adventures and tips or her secret parenting tips for staying alive while wrangling 4 kids. She has a "official" business background in marketing + PR + events, but now plays daily with social media strategy, brand development and digital media. Days are long. Life is short.
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