Photo taken at the University of Colorado Hospital by Aaron DeLay
Every year. Every year I do this thinking, “This year I can do it without having to catch up.” And every year I end up behind the eight ball cursing the keys my fingers run desperately across. It’s the way of the keyboard and you would think I’d eventually figure this out and accept it. But you’d be wrong. I’m still missing day four and the fact that I’m still talking about it means that it’s going to stick in my metaphorical craw until I manage to pound that day out of the keyboard and into the internets. And so goes the life of a NaBloWriMo lifer.
Today is a day I’m thankful for friends. And it brings to the forefront something I’ve been marinating on for a week or so.
Let’s pause here as I feel the need to explain marinate. I usually don’t jump to conclusions or shoot first. I’m a thinker. I like to take things apart from all the directions (there’s a one direction joke in here somewhere) and examine the nitty gritty. I’m always thinking on something and it’s why I use the word, ‘marinate’. When you’re preppin’ the good meat you have got to let that stuff marinate, soak and sit in the custom made juices. And so my brain needs to do all those things before I can go forward with something resembling confidence.
So I’ll marinate on things until I can make my call – and it’s usually a very decisive one given that I’ve taken all that time and effort.
Unpausing here – we had a guest speaker at our young adult group last week and as a part of her getting to know us gig went around to some of us before service started and queried what we’d want to know from her or ask her to see if we’d be a good match to be friends. There were a lot of serious and hilarious questions she pulled as she walked around.
The thing that stuck with me is this. I’m very picky with my friends. I either want to spend time with you or I don’t. I work 50 hours a week on third shift. My time is precious. If I make the choice to make time to spend with you – that is a huge thing for me. Making time for folks in a fairly busy schedule that includes volunteer work and church in the middle of the week – it’s a big deal.
Over the last year I’ve met many new friends and reconnected with a few old ones. And I’ve found myself paring down the people I spend time with – perhaps subconsciously more than I expected. I have significant trust issues with friends and I also don’t like losing friends which would explain my reticence. It was still alarming to realize how I was managing my friends or lack of – and it was amusing to take that apart piece by piece this week.
It’s taken 31 years but I’ve finally begun to understand what a friend is – and how that really looks. Not like it does on television or movies or even in books – but in the big ugly that is the world out there. I’m still fine tuning (that is a weird expression) my friendships because people do change and relationships ebb and flow. But I’d like to think that I’ve come full circle from wanting to be friends with everyone and invited to everything to being ok with sitting on the other side of the pendulum nearer to the middle – for the moment.
And so, one more day of National Blog Writing Month is down and another personal discovery is cross off the list!
To sign up or get more details on this whole project there’s a facebook group here, twitter here and a website here.