Tonight Kim, I want to write to you. Over the years your friendship has meant more to me than you could ever imagine. Our friendship is one of my life's highlights! In the past I have sometimes felt like I had to defend our friendship to other people in my life. Like it wasn't okay to say that you are my person because somehow that meant there wasn't room for other friendships and relationships in my life. And I get it.. Saying "best" friend creates this notion of some sort of scale and I can see how it invites a spirit of comparison, jealousy, and competition. I recently read a post about female friendships and the author said it perfectly!
"best" isn't about exclusivity but rather years of stories, love, and support that have granted us the highest honor of friendship...the best of the best.
I just love that.
|My favorite picture of us|
I finally decided to sit down to try to put into words the impact our 10 year friendship has had on me for a couple of reasons.
1. Like I said, it makes me happy. Happy the way that the color yellow makes my soul happy. The kind of happy I feel when I see sunflowers on a warm sunny day. The kind of happy I feel when I smell the sea mixed with coconut sunscreen. Side-note: I can't smell coconut and not think of you!
I guess forging our friendship in sunshiny, beachey Florida did that to me. So many of our friendship memories were made with our toes in the warm sand. In fact sometimes the sand wasn't so warm as we danced the night away at Captain Hirams barefoot with the moon shining.
Our friendship makes me happy the way only a giant ice-cream cone on a hot day can. And you are the only person I know who can eat a cone faster than me...and you know that was hard to admit because I'm competitive like that! Our friendship makes me happy like a fat cat sitting in the warm sunlight that spills in through the windows. Seriously..cats are so smart.
But our friendship is like that..its warm, kind of like that feeling you have about home.
Home is safe and comforting and it just feels good, our friendship is like that to me, home.
2. Honestly, I hate to admit the second reason, but its true so here it is. Cancer.
What is it that makes that word ugly...Can a word BE ugly?
If it weren't for cancer all of the thoughts I have about our friendship would just be floating around in my head. It would all still be there and it would all be true, I would just take me sweet time getting around to writing it all down. And if I hadn't been faced with the thought of losing you before we are old and wrinkly I might not have pondered so deeply the effect of our friendship on my life.
In the last year I sat down several times and thought about us and the evolution of our friendship.
I have listed out my favorite things about you, my first impression of you, funny moments, etc.
I think intentionally thinking on those things added more value and weight to the little things we all take for granted in life everyday. I have never faced the reality of my own mortality so I can only imagine what that is like for you. I think that must change a person in profound ways.
Cancer is scary and you can't help but think of death at least a little. Ironically, thinking about death sheds so much light on life. I know they say the light shines brightest when darkness is present so in that way I'll pay my healthy respects to cancer. But thats it, just a polite nod of acknowledgement.
Kim, I know you have scans coming up and I know you get anxious and nervous. It makes me so mad! If cancer were a tangible bully I would come down there and beat her up. I would take a whole bunch of boxing lessons and just pummel her. Like with brass knuckles. And if I could I would drop kick her like a soccer ball straight to hell. Vivid I know, there are more details about what I would do to cancer in human form. I'll share with you over a glass of wine sometime!
Since I cant actually beat up all forms of cancer or anxiety for that matter Im hoping this post brightens up your day and chases any shadows away!
So, with out further ado in random chaos just my thoughts on you and us.
I'm so glad I met you when I did, both in our twenties and pretty free. We both had our husbands to be, but I feel like they were both always so supportive of our friendship and never tried to hinder us from having fun. We are so lucky that way, we've kind of gotten to grow up together.
Even though we haven't necessarily been close geographically our lives have really paralleled each other and so even though we have distance between us we have these shared major life experiences that lessened the impact of that distance. I LOVE how anytime I talk to you or when Im lucky enough to see you we really can pick up where we left off. I think that speaks volumes about our friendship. There is such a security and feeling of peace in knowing that our friendship is unconditional and can stand the test of time and distance.
You know EVERYTHING about me and I think the ability to be vulnerable with you has maybe become the thing at this stage in our lives that I appreciate the most. Its hard to show someone the truth when it isn't pretty. Thank you for loving and accepting my broken parts too.
We have so much shared history and most of it has been good and I'm so grateful for that.
I'm even more grateful for the times when it was hard and we shared in each others pain.
I think sometimes experiencing pain together allows us to go deeper and that's when unbreakable bonds are formed. You were the first one I told when I lost our second baby. I knew you had been there and would understand what I was feeling. And because you have the gift of encouragement I knew you would know what I needed to hear, you always say the right thing! You've encouraged and supported me through so many other dark times and I know that you're in it for the long haul.
You are one of my lifelines.
I think in the beginning I definitely pursued you in our friendship. Sometimes I felt like a creepy stalker "please be my friend" LOL There was just something about you that I liked.
Earlier I mentioned my first impression of you...
So, I distinctly remember getting off work one night and grabbing a drink with you.
In my mind you were like a quiet, reserved, and responsible librarian. Over what probably turned out to be several drinks we discussed some interesting things and I remember thinking...
OMG she's like the quintessential sexy librarian you never saw coming!
I love it when people surprise me! You were interesting and intriguing and I just knew I needed to know you..to REALLY know you.
We don't REALLY get to know too many people so thank you for being vulnerable with me too! There is so much freedom in vulnerability.
So, the other day I had to text you to ask you about the car you had when I first met you. I told you it was/is one of my favorite things about you! So, here you were this gorgeous young twenty something girl living in Florida and you drove a Buick Century...I just call it a granny car HAHA
You just laugh and say they are comfortable cars. That is why I LOVE you.
You are the most down to earth person I know. It is so freaking refreshing! You just are who you are and you're comfortable with who you are. That is such a rare quality today. I feel like so many people are pretending to be what they THINK others want. I think your genuineness is beautiful and brave. You don't put on airs. Thank you for being real! Here I am making fun of your car and I'm still driving my busted up Corolla from ten years ago. But hey, its a comfortable car (and its paid for).
I love that over the years we've made our friendship a priority. We may only see each other twice a year but we know how to cram hundreds of hours of conversation into a long weekend.
We have some pretty great adventures too ;) I promise next time you come here if we go to Philly we won't stumble upon any homeless camps and hopefully we won't run into any insane/drunk creepy men picking up random boulders and smashing them onto the sidewalk in front of us...
Also, Im so grateful for your fight/flight response and your inclination to run AWAY from the man that night! I don't know what I was thinking!
So, once you hired me at Bath and Body Works and I experienced your awesome management style its no wonder I wanted to work with you again! That got me thinking quite a bit of our work history overlaps. I can say this about you, your work ethic is amazing and you are so smart and capable.
You know how much I love and admire women taking work by the proverbial balls and crushing it!
I know jobs you've had in the past weren't necessarily fulfilling to you but I admired your dedication and got to see you in a different light. Its kind of like seeing the inside of the cockpit on the airplanes Austin flies and realizing how freaking smart he has to be to do that job. I thought that about you too when you were working for Coach. To me it seemed glamorous and I was always proud of you.
Even at the Legler's I knew how much pressure there was and I always thought you were such a boss! I guess I look up to you!
I love to think about where we've been, where we're at, and where we'll go in our friendship. The possibilities are endless. I imagine one day we can do a girls trip to Europe or something. Thats another thing I love about you. You're always up for an adventure. It would be so fun to discover a new city together! Ohh, you could show me around Ireland! Can you just imagine the conversations we'll be having in twenty years! UGH, how are we going to survive our kids in high school and college. I have a feeling our conversations are going to stay really interesting over the years.
So, I love to remember how much fun I had when we would get ready to go out together. Trying on each others clothes and shoes trying to find the perfect outfit! Also, I LOVE that we can both do our hair and makeup in like 10 minutes and be ready to go! I actually take pride in that. Its a bragging right of our friendship. Some of those nights out before we had kids are my favorite. Just the freedom to go out unencumbered and recover on the beach with gatorade and subs the next day.
Those were some good days!
Another thing I absolutely LOVE about you is your lack of obsession with your phone and social media. We have talked about this so many times but you need to know how much this matters to me. I love that when we are hanging out or talking we are present. Fully present and engaged.
I feel like what I say and think matters to you and we all want to matter to the people we love so thank you for that! On this note you and I always joke that we never take pictures together and Im glad we've gotten a little better but its also sort of been a hallmark of our friendship.
I love that when we are doing things together we aren't so distracted and caught up with capturing a moment that we miss out on the experience. I remember going to an amazing concert and I looked around and saw hundreds of people videoing the entire concert on their phones...
I thought why are they experiencing this big moment on their 5 inch screen when the musicians were 5 feet away! They were missing everything. I guess all of facebook could see their super cool status update but at what cost. Anyway, didn't mean to get off on a tangent about society's obsession with social media. I like to think that when we are together we're just having too much fun to think about snapping a picture. All that being said we still need to do a little better. Lets promise to at least take one picture a day when we hang out so that when we are old we can say remember when...
You know I love Winnie the Pooh quotes and this one defines us...
We didn't realize we were making memories we just knew we were having fun.
The fact that Austin really genuinely likes you makes me so happy. I love that when we hang out you like being around him too even though he teases you about your thumbs LOL
Sometimes though Im like "okay Austin...she's my friend I know she's awesome, leave us alone".
So, thanks for loving Austin too. Oh, and for laughing at his corny jokes, isn't he just the best!
I love our traditions. Like, I always know you are down for some Mexican food, that's just a given.
I already know that when you get me from the airport your trunk will be full of wine!
I already know we NEED to see a scary movie together and you better have a zip up sweater with you! (I love that we have our own little inside jokes)
I know we are about to smash some ice-cream when I see you!
My favorite tradition though...I already know that no matter what we do I am going to have the best time!
I love your laugh too. I have a thing for laughs. Like when someone has a good one I notice. I'm like a tooth fairy but I don't want to snatch up your baby teeth I want to bottle up laughter so I can listen to it whenever I want. To date Landon has the best laugh but yours is way up there.
Coincidentally a great laugh is the one thing all of my favorite people have in common!
I like that I miss you the most in the small moments. Yeah, I am so excited to see you and I have so many great memories but its seriously the little things that get me. Like sometimes I wonder what you're having for dinner and I wish I could just say; "Kim, you guys should just come over for tacos tonight". In my wildest dreams we are neighbors and we just walk over to each other's houses whenever just to say hi, and our kids are best friends and they just take turns going to our houses but no matter what they are always home.
When you were sick it was really hard because I wanted to be there for you and I couldn't be.
Like, I wanted to come over and cook for you, and clean your house.
Or, while you were feeling broken and angry I wanted to show you how satisfying breaking glass bottles can be when you are mad at God and the world. Obviously, I would have cleaned up all the broken glass. Hopefully I'm not that only person who has done this otherwise I sound insane..
Although if we were neighbors one of us would have to suck it up and get a minivan so we could car pool when we took the kids on adventures and excursions together. Those are just my silly dreams..
Now that I've made myself sad I need some redemption. So I'll say this..
Our friendship is like a favorite pair of sweat pants. Of course getting dressed up for an hour or two is super fun and you can handle six inch heels for awhile, and yeah the fake eyelashes make your eyes sparkle, and that spanx makes it look like you've never had a baby...but we all know those comfy sweat pants are where its at. That moment you get home and you kick off those heels before you make it to your bedroom and oh my...when you take off that spanx and you remember what its like to breathe.... oh yeah. You put on those familiar sweat pants and you relax and its glorious.
And you get to just be you...
Thank you for letting me just be me and for that always being more than enough!
Here are some pictures of us through the years! Yeah, I guess we need to get better about this. I need more pictures of us in my life!
|OMG...Circa 2008 where it all began BBW|
|Blurry but I still love it|
|OMG remember Ryan was upset about something and just went and sat in the middle of a field all alone LOL|
|You and Ryan..remember at your baby shower I was jealous I wasn't keeping track of the gift list!|
|Look at our boys!|
|I so need a pedicure|
|Morgan....so gorgeous thanks for letting me crash when you're in NY|
|Me and Logi|
|Baby Morgan's Tea!|
|Wow, Savannah...weren't you pregnant? I feel like this is when you got sick on the ghost bus tour..|
|Austy and baby Morgan in NY|
|Philly when we almost died LOL|
|Just so you know...I'd do it again a hundred times!|
|Oh my gosh, I just love this picture of you and seriously that night we had the BEST fried pickles!|