Day 1730: It’s not that you’re leaving. It’s that you stayed.

Yesterday, I stayed at my computer to read this transcript of Lesley Stahl’s  interview with U.S. Senator John McCain.

This exchange — about his having the same kind of brain cancer a dear friend of mind is currently battling —  will not be leaving me any time soon:

Lesley Stahl: Do you think that this diagnosis has changed you?

John McCain: No.

Lesley Stahl: Not at all. Same person?

John McCain: No, I think you gotta– you know, you just have to understand that it’s not that you’re leaving. It’s that you– that you stayed.

Yesterday,  I was talking to another dear friend, Megan, who works with me and will be leaving the job soon because of a long commute and family obligations. Megan and I have been focusing on her leaving with tears and sadness.  When I said to her, yesterday, “It’s not that you’re leaving.  It’s that you stayed,” we both felt better.

It’s not that you’re leaving this post at the end, it’s that you stayed to read my words and look at my photographs.











That’s Megan’s office door, and I’m already imagining what it’s going to be like when she closes that door for the last time, in three weeks,  when she leaves. It helps me to remember that it’s not that she’s leaving; it’s that she stayed.

It’s not that I left Merrily We Roll Along at the end of the performance on Saturday.  It’s that I stayed to hear “Opening Doors.”


Thanks to you all, for staying.




Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 33 Comments

Post navigation

33 thoughts on “Day 1730: It’s not that you’re leaving. It’s that you stayed.

  1. I love this

  2. Awwww it’s hard to stay when others leave us.

  3. Thank you for sharing John McCain’s wisdom in your own fine style, Ann.

  4. Hi Ann, a few little words for your workmate and friend Megan
    It’s hard to see you leave.
    You’ve been here a while.
    Like an Oceans Coral reef.
    You filled our days in style.
    Like the first Autumn leaf.
    We’ll remember your gracious smile.

  5. It seems like John McCain has been schooling us all lately, Ann.

  6. I saw that interview. Almost made me cry. I’m not of his political party, but I’ve always thought he was a class guy. He gave good advice.

  7. Most of the time we’re lucky and aware enough to appreciate the impact others have on our lives, but sometimes it’s only when they leave, or are about to leave, that we fully understand how much their having stayed meant. Or, as a much better writer put it,

    I hold it true, whate’er befall;
    I feel it, when I sorrow most;
    ‘Tis better to have loved and lost
    Than never to have loved at all.

  8. Leaving can never be avoided. It happens in life at various times and circumstances. And it happens at life’s end here. What matters is not leaving, but what one leaves behind. Have we left a legacy of vice or virtue. We all influence someone.

  9. Happiness is an achievement 😊

  10. Loved Opening Doors. Thanks for sharing.

  11. So much to like here–but I especially liked you putting a little theater music into my Tuesday:). Thank you!

  12. Pingback: Day 1731: The Beet Goes On | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  13. As you well know, sometimes being there is just what is needed

  14. for the real daring;
    let others share
    how wonderful
    you were 🙂

  15. Pingback: Day 2364: Where would you go in a time machine? | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  16. Pingback: Day 2803: I haven’t been this depressed since … | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  17. Pingback: Day 3061: Moving | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: