“How do you go on? How do you regain your life when your heart knows there’s no more going back? There are some hurts that go too deep they’ve taken hold.”– Frodo
The hobbits didn’t see it coming. They didn’t think he would leave because after all, they did what they set out to do: destroy the ring. They have completed their task; they have finished their journey; they were home. But not for Frodo. Not for the things he still bears in his heart, and the pain that comes with being “wounded with knife, sting, and tooth, and a long burden,” as he put it.
“But,” said Sam, and tears started in his eyes, “I thought you were going to enjoy the Shire, too. For years and years, after all you have done.”
“So I thought too, once. But I have been too deeply hurt, Sam. I tried to save the Shire, and it has been saved, but not for me. It must often be so, Sam, when things are in danger: someone has to give them up, lose them, so that others may keep them.” (The Return of the King: “The Grey Havens,” p. 209)
The burden might have left him already, but there was one thing destroying the ring cannot do: undo the hurt.
For as Frodo learned and so did this writer, even when all was done and the ring was no more, the hurt was still there. It stings. The hurt was still there.
And the hurt is going to be there until, like Frodo, we are called home.