Wednesday, June 1, 2011

thanks, part 3.

Looks like this lovely feature will live to see another week.

The letter below is addressed to my dear friend Devin, who now lives in Chicago. We met at work and he pretty much got me through the first five months at my current job.  

Hey, D.

I'm smiling while I type this right now because I feel kind of silly about it. But let's get it rolling, shall we?!

Remember the first time we hung out away from the office? Thanks for suggesting that. Tennessee beat Ohio State, it was March Madness,  we were alumni rivals and pretty much instant friends. It was a shitty game and I was bitterly disappointed and you started singing Rocky Top right there in the bar in Indianapolis. We barely knew each other and you were yelling throughout the place and cursing at your players and we settled in as friends that very night. Mutual respect, or something like it.

What a gamble though, you know? That transition from work friends to real friends can be a dangerous game. Not for us. The office where we met and the job from hell, it brought us together- so I guess I can't hate it too much. That place is brutal, though huh? I'm still wasting away in my little cubicle cell and you've got two moves under your belt since then. It's fantastic that you keep growing, fighting tooth and nail to get to your professional goal, it reminds me that I need to fight off looming complacency at every turn.

Remember the email thread? There were periods of time I spent more effort crafting responses to the thread than I did on work. Like, long periods of time. Thanks for the bullet points. Thanks for the morning greetings, the promises that it would be a great day, the onion articles, the laughs. Thanks for all of it. I wouldn't have fared without you to prod me along.

I like having a friend that I can relate to, who grew up with a father also in this industry. The constant travel, the moving around. Serial transplants. It's probably why we get along so well, always having to make new relationships sort of forces you to learn how to talk to people, make fast friends. Thanks for getting me that way,  for being able to relate on that level. Charismatic fathers and cocktail hours, we're alike in so many ways.

There's something to be said about strong personalities; at one point we'll be having a casual conversation about anything from sports to politics and before I realize it we're shouting over each other to get a point across. In a public setting. Causing a scene. Per usual. It's never conflict driving our conversation, it's excitement, interest, passion. Thanks for bringing that to the table too, it feels good to have heated and animated conversations. It feels good to have someone give it back.  

You wear your heart on your sleeve and expect the best out of me. You hold me to it. Thank you, truly, for that. And when I'm down and doubting myself and deeping worried that I'll never get out of here, you remind me how smart and talented I am. You tell me how I'm meant for more and encourage me to reach out and take it. I'm so grateful to have such an eloquent friend with so much faith in my abilities. Even when I'm hating myself and lower than low, you will take the time to raise me up, no questions asked. I only wish I can be there that way when you need it too.

Dev, you make me feel cool, and so important. You want to hear what I have to say and you make the effort to stay in touch with me when I'm busy getting swept up in the bullshit of my everyday life. I'm sorry, so sorry, that I'm so terrible at making sure we're still always on the same page, all caught up on what's going on in our own lives. I feel terrible when I miss you or forget to call you back. And then I let too much time pass and I feel even worse and guilty and avoid it altogether.  I feel absolutely horrid that I didn't have the time and energy to drive over to where you were to see you this weekend when you were in town. You would have made the effort. You're always willing to make the effort.

I miss that. I miss getting beers with you after work, sitting outside and taking about our families and our goals and our hellish workdays and the motley crew of our department. You're one of the best and I know you've literally never had an ulterior motive to get ahead. You do things the right way, the fair way. Life is so goddamn unfair, thanks for showing me the good ones can still end up on top. And you'll keep moving up, too. You're a hardest worker I know and you've earned every bit of that cockiness you throw out sometimes.

At the risk of getting overly emotional and sounding idiotic, I want to thank you for being so bold and in life's face. You're always fearlessly wearing your heart on your sleeve and being your this-is-what-I-expect-and-deserve, but also  let-me-help-you-self. You've never once complained to me about how hard it is for you to get around, with the exception of the "Really? You people don't have any fucking handrails? This is a goddamn death trap." Comment last spring after a couple of Beams. I can't imagine how much you've gone through for your CP, and still, it never rules your life or defines you as a person. You'd be damned before it ever did. You've got such a big personality, a great personality, that I often times forget all the shit you've got to deal with on a daily basis.

You're stronger than I'll ever be, thanks for showing me such a forceful strength in spirit. You'll always be one of my best friends, no matter how often we see each other or how frequently we find time to catch up with one another. I'm so grateful to be able to safely say that.

Thanks for coming out, you always bring all you've got.

XX Sara

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