The Student Magazine of Jakarta Intercultural School

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Graceful Goodbyes

First impressions are important, but final impressions are what last.
Graceful+Goodbyes
Devyani C.

Every ending has the potential to be a beginning, but the transition is not always easy—especially when it involves saying goodbye. The act of farewell, particularly for teenagers on the cusp of graduation, can be fraught with unpreparedness, making these moments feel abrupt and leaving little room for meaningful closure. As seniors prepare to embark on new phases of their lives, understanding the art of ending relationships well is crucial.

Lasting Final Impressions 

While first impressions set the stage, final impressions are what endure in memory, shaping how relationships are retrospectively viewed and remembered. For seniors at JIS, each farewell encapsulates significant relational dynamics accumulated over years. These final moments offer a unique opportunity to reflect on shared experiences and express gratitude, which can reinforce the positive aspects of relationships.

When farewells are thoughtful, they affirm the value of past connections and offer closure, easing the emotional transition into new life stages. On the other hand, when they are handled poorly or overlooked, they can leave a lingering sense of incompleteness or regret. Ensuring these goodbyes are heartfelt and meaningful is key as they can significantly impact one’s personal growth and emotional well- being, potentially affecting future openness to new relationships.

Unresolved Closures 

Despite the importance of farewells, many closures frequently remain unresolved due to several reasons. For instance, the pressure of impending changes—such as moving to new cities, starting college, or entering the workforce—may feel overwhelming for many seniors. As such, the busyness associated with these transitions can bring challenges when carving out moments for heartfelt farewells. Often, the urgency to prepare for what is next might lead individuals to postpone or entirely overlook the importance of saying a proper goodbye, only to realize too late that the opportunity has passed. Moreover, the convenience and immediacy of digital platforms can exacerbate these postponed farewells, as seniors default to quicker yet superficial exchanges online. Digital communication—through texts, emails, and social media messages—while convenient often strips away the nuanced expressions, tone of voice, and body language that are essential for enriching one-on-one interactions. Therefore, the ease of sending a message or posting a farewell note on social media can lead to a procedural check-box approach that fails to convey genuine sentiments when saying goodbyes.

Embracing Goodbyes

Navigating goodbyes as JIS seniors involves more than mere formality—it requires deliberate reflection and genuine interaction. Closing relationships with the depth and respect they warrant not only brings a sense of completeness but also positively influences forthcoming endeavors. To foster a sense of completion and respect in the relationships nurtured over the years, consider these thoughtful approaches:

1. Expressing Gratitude

A heartfelt “thank you” goes a long way. Take the time to acknowledge the influence teachers, peers, and mentors have had on your life. This act of appreciation not only enriches the parting experience for both parties but also seals the past relationship with mutual respect.

2. Personal Goodbyes

As the school year concludes, make an effort to individually visit and connect with those who have shaped your journey, whether through a handshake, a hug, or a personalized note. These gestures are more impactful than generic goodbyes and help in making the moment significant.

3. Learning to Let Go

Understanding that some relationships may evolve or fade is crucial in managing the emotional aspects of farewells. Embrace the changes with grace and and focus on the new adventures ahead to reduce potential anxiety about parting.

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About the Contributors
Yujeong O., Managing Editor
With her ever-growing fondness for the English language and visual art, Katie is an aestheticist who loves to savor all things beautiful in the world. Her passion for writing thrives along with her appreciation for hearing timeless stories. In her final year of high school, Katie is honored to be serving as the Managing Editor for Feedback magazine, her utmost pride and source of joy.
Devyani C., Art Director
Ever since her mother taught her and her brother how to draw, Devyani has continuously practiced and tried different mediums and techniques to excel in both creativity and skill. Finding a new passion in digital art, Devyani still seeks to find new ways of ideation and techniques in order to have effective graphic communication for both Feedback and her future works.