Shortly after the closure announcement a dear friend posted the last few seconds of 10's life. The iconic phrase of " I don't want to go" was uttered and our hearts all broke. In that instant you know the emotional loss regeneration takes. I used this line as a way of simply expressing my feelings about this place. It ended up that I didn't have to go in the end, but Sweet Briar did. Sweet Briar died. As much as we want to say it didn't, it did. It brought that scene full circle for me. Sweet Briar died but it didn't stay dead. It regenerated. But, as any Doctor Who fan worth their salt knows, the new Doctor is different. As is Sweet Briar. It continues but isn't the same. It has all the same memories, knows all the same people, has all the same places, but it has become something new. No matter how hard it tries, the losses are still there.
Even though some students came back and some faculty and staff stayed, we are forever different. It's still here but we feel the loss. Some lost students or friends. Some are separated from their families. The whole place is filled with ghosts. Everywhere I look I see an empty space. Where someone I know should be, but isn't.
I thought the hard part would be leaving. Driving out of the gates knowing I wouldn't be back. I was wrong. The hard part was staying. Staying and watching the others go. Feeling the emptiness. Watching others try and fill their place. It feels like people are pretending they were never here at all. It's lonely.