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A summer of goodbyes at Chelsea: Hazard, Cahill, David Luiz

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It’s the punch you don’t see coming that knocks you out

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It is never easy saying goodbye. It takes strength to pull the words from deep within, especially in person. Coming to terms mentally with the change or the loss of what once was ... that, my friends, is an arduous process.

A farewell is an event, which brings forth a myriad of emotions and feelings. Some feel it as a rush that comes all at once. Others may face slow, idling inner battles fighting against the tide of emotions: sadness, grief, anger, disappointment.

Goodbyes are a part of life. And if football is life, we all must deal with goodbyes on a fairly regular basis.

Another summer transfer window is closed, and even with Chelsea’s transfer ban, it still found a way to toy with our emotions. To think we were safe from the madness that is transfer deadline day was foolish.

Some goodbyes are inevitable. We hear the rumors of the eventual breakup. They start as whispers. Then we read quotes and question loyalty and commitment. We tell ourselves lies to help brace the impending pain. On the horizon we see what may come, and we hold on tightly to the present. The joys and perils of the current day we can handle. It’s the thought of losing what we have that has us shook.

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The signs of a world without Eden Hazard had been around for years. It clouded our years with him, even. Through the highest of highs, the titles, and trophies, its presence grew. And it darkened. For all the wrong reasons, what we once thought impossible … became possible.

By this past season, Hazard’s eventual exit was more or less expected. A decision had to be made with his contract nearing its expiration. When he broke our hearts announcing his move to Madrid, the pain was still there front and center.

But that pain was perhaps lessened. The once impending feeling of loss that was once dreaded, had been spread out over the years. With our own inner monologues we had the time to process his farewell.

Hazard’s exit was painful, but his goodbye was about as gracious as any fan could want. He left on a high. We were given time to embrace his exit, his accomplishments, and come to terms with our new reality.

When done properly, goodbyes will provide all parties with closure and positive outlook for whatever may come. Gary Cahill left with his head held high after a season spent on the sidelines. His departure did not generate many headlines. It wasn’t a surprise. But we all knew what he meant to the club. England’s Brave, he’d won it all, raging against the dying of the light.

Chelsea v Manchester United - The Emirates FA Cup Final Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

Some goodbyes come as a shock. The emotions come rushing at you all at once. They hit you fast, and they hit you harder. When the dust settles, you are left to embrace what once was and consider what is and will be.

Sudden goodbyes leave one or more parties feeling a lack of closure. These lingering feelings of unfinished business can swell into anger and frustration. WIthout closure, there is a lack of understanding. And this misunderstanding may even coincide with sadness, regret, or even guilt by the end.

In the span of 24 hours, the whirlwind that was David Luiz’s transfer to Arsenal best exemplifies a sudden goodbye. Just recently, he had spoken about how thrilled he is to work with Frank Lampard, his positive outlook for the season, and how excited he was with the youth integration.

It is with great sadness and multiple mixed emotions we end our ride on the sideshow that is David Luiz in yet another deadline-day transfer, his third of four transfers as they relate to Chelsea.

Anger for his move to a rival. Confusion for such a sudden move. Sadness for the end of his time with the club.

Borussia Monchengladbach v Chelsea - Club Friendly Photo by Laurens Lindhout/Soccrates/Getty Images

David Luiz never was a player who garnered universal appreciation. He was a true agent of chaos, risk and reward and all. On his good days, he did just enough in defense to allow his contributions to the other phases of the game to shine. On his bad days, it would feel as if he was lost in the moment, sometimes a passenger to the play happening right by him.

Still reeling from his shock exit, it is hard to perform a post-mortem on David Luiz and Chelsea. Eventually we may come to the closure of our relationship and cherish the good times. However, his exit comes at a stark contrast from Hazard’s. It was quick. It was a shock. Hardly anyone could have seen this coming.

At minimum, we will come up against Arsenal’s sideshow spectacular defense twice. For a man who has made almost 250 appearances, scored almost 20 goals, and won multiple trophies in blue, the thought of him wearing red is sickening.

Breakups like this leave a bad taste. It is up to the individual to find forgiveness, if any is warranted after all is said and done. It is never easy saying goodbye, but finding the thoughts and words of thankfulness may be harder.