I’ve already covered the fact that I’m not a great friend. I suck at answering text messages and cancel plans to hang out all the time because the concept of having to leave my home and do something sounds super hard sometimes. I’m honestly shocked that my friends still try to talk to me at all.
I’m an equally bad family member for pretty much the same reasons. I forget to call my family back 90% of the time and go for months without going to my home an hour away from where I live. Not because I don’t love them, but because I get distracted.
The biggest thing of all though is that I don’t do a great job of telling them how much they mean to me. Ask any of them and they will confirm that emotional openness is not one of my strong suits. They are all so important and I should tell them that every day. So, I decided to write them each a letter. To remind myself how spectacular they are and that I should really make more of an effort to show them.
I started with just a couple people, thinking that it would be hard and take a long time, but the moment I started typing, all of the things that I love most about these people came pouring out faster than my fingers could move. So I wrote more. I wrote one to all of them.
To the shy girl with social anxiety who still somehow found the guts to walk up to the new kid on the team with no friends and strike up a conversation. Who I then spent the next six years trying to be just like. She will always be the cool girl in my eyes.
To the curly-headed kid that gives the greatest hugs in the universe and has a face that lights up every time he sees me, even though he’s known me for years.
To the girl who I can spend an entire evening sitting side-by-side watching movies and barely speaking with that my heart is absolutely bursting with love for.
To the guy who is my son and my best friend at the same time who tells the greatest stories and always brings happiness to every room he walks into. That I’ve definitely cried about missing so much, but if I told him that he’d laugh at me.
The Irish kid who calls always me Kiermo and has great heart-to-hearts when he’s drunk, the brother who always let me win but also showed me how to succeed, the girl who’s been there as far back as my memory goes and has a heart the size of Africa, the boy that takes care of everything so I never have a worry in the world, the cousin who was always my partner in crime, the funniest and most beautiful parents on the planet, and on and on and on.
By the time I was done, I thought my heart might explode. I think it’s easy as you get older and busier to forget that the people in your life you chose for a reason (or were lovingly bestowed when it comes to family) and when you give them the time and attention they deserve, they can fill you up with more love than you could possibly imagine.
I don’t think I’ll ever show any of them these letters, but I still think they were a great idea. They served as a reminder of why I should try a little harder to keep such incredible souls around. And maybe even give them all an extra long hug next time I see them (even though physical contact makes me squirmy). I am so stupid lucky to have such a big group of humans who are cool with me derping around in their atmosphere and I shouldn’t ever take that for granted.