I don’t want to say goodbye. I hate goodbyes.

It was 2016. I was involved in a horrible breakup. One morning, everything was wonderful, and later that day it was completely done. Over. No warning.

And at my lowest possible time in my life … a new entity came into my world.

And we were together for six years. Six amazing years. So many long trips together. So many moments spent together.

But last November, things changed between us. The get-up-and-go spirit struggled. It struggled more than it should. And although things righted themselves after a while … I could tell that both of us needed a change. There was no sugar-coating this.

Sometimes our lives are greeted for only a moment. Or a day. Or a year. We made six years happen together. All the joy. All the struggle. A trip to South Carolina to photograph a solar eclipse. Journeys to Atlantic City for championship trivia tournaments. Trips into the woods for memorable, award-winning photographs.

But again … in the past few days … we both knew it couldn’t last.

Last Saturday, we said goodbye. Not “I’ll see you soon,” or “We’ll be together again.” Both of us knew that a reunion wouldn’t work. We both needed someone new. We could just take the happiness of those six wonderful years and make that our memory.

This was different. I’ve had splits like this before. Some have been painful. Others, frustrating. This one … it was more resolute than anything. We both knew it couldn’t last. That’s the refrain. Over and over.

We both knew it couldn’t last.

And I wasn’t too thrilled about discussing this in my blog. Even though my blog is one of the most open and personal blogs on the Internet. Because I believe that discussion encourages discourse, and discourse encourages healing.

And … maybe one of my faults is that I get too emotionally attached. Well … when you grow up in a household where your parents never wanted you, where two sets of step-parents treated you like a pile of offal, when it was a struggle to keep your emotional sanity in school from all the mental damage at home … you get attached to kindness and dependability. And you hate to let it go. Trust me. Nobody wants to let it go.

So an agreement was reached. Saturday would be our last day together. We would spend the days leading up to Saturday in reflection, sorting out what’s mine and what’s not mine, go to the Patroons game on Friday night … and then Saturday we will go our separate ways. No hate, no tears. We were together in a low point in my life, and now it’s time to move to the next phase.

So, yeah. Six years.

Or at least 55,000 miles together.

But it’s now time for my 2013 Chevrolet Cruze “Dracourage” to move on. And it’s time for me to acquire a new-to-me car. Which will happen this Saturday.

And new road trips and adventures will ensue.

They have to.

I won’t wish differently.