It really isn’t hard to remind myself of how blessed I am. Even in the midst of a crappy week or two (and I had an EPICALLY crappy week a couple of weeks ago) I look around me and struggle to count my blessings not because I can’t identify them, but because there are so many of them.
Two in particular have been resonating with me on a near-constant basis as of late. The first, of course, being my relationship with Bill. Now, I am a great lover of romance, and the number of romance novels in my collection rivals the number of science fiction and fantasy. There isn’t a whole heck of a lot of romance between Bill and myself – for all that I love the idea of romance, my pragmatic side is in the forefront most of the time. Romance and pragmatism are diametrically opposed. And Bill is… well, Bill. A great husband, sometime deliverer of warm-fuzzy bombs, but not so much a hearts and flowers kind of guy. Which isn’t to say there hasn’t been any romance at all in our relationship, it just happened early on, during the time when Bill was “still required to impress me” (his words, not mine).
What we have is constancy. The dictionary definition is so much the desired culmination of romance, as to be romantic in and of itself:
The quality of being unchanging or unwavering, as in purpose, love, or loyalty; firmness of mind; faithfulness.
THAT, my friends, is what Bill and I have. And I am blessed beyond measure because of it.
The second blessing I’m counting today is friendship. I don’t have a vast army of friends. I have a finely distilled selection of quality friends who are ALSO constant. I don’t see them all the time, I don’t communicate with them all the time, and occasionally we fall off of one another’s radar for a not-short period. But when we do reconnect there is no judgement – on either side – about lack of communication. I know I’m in their hearts, they know they’re in mine. That’s how friendship works.
I’m feeling grateful for two friends in particular today, for no specific reason other than I love them. One is my good friend Aaron (formerly known on this site as “Archibael”), with whom I have been friends since we both started working at AcronymCo back in 1995. You may recall such epic entries as this one, or this one. If you’ve REALLY been paying attention you may recall that Aaron helped name this website. Anyway. Our friendship suffered some distance, due entirely to the fact that Aaron’s ex-wife is an unpleasant, judgey individual. She did NOT approve of my relationship with Bill, therefore cut HER friendship off with me and pretty much expected Aaron to do the same. So, though we communicated at work, had some fun e-mail exchanges and occasionally dropped by one another’s desks for a chat, we didn’t hang out. I knew things weren’t great, life-wise, for Aaron. He’s not one to burden his friends, though, so I offered him a shoulder if he needed it but that was all I could do.
Then, about a year ago, he contacted me to let me know that he was getting a divorce. Much celebration ensued. And THEN he got a new girlfriend, Michelle. More celebration ensued. Then we MET Michelle. And I met the twin sister of my heart. She has become one of my closest friends. On top of the fact that she’s awesome in her own right, she makes Aaron very happy. AND we get to all hang out together and do really fun stuff. It’s like I got a long-lost friend back, with an added bonus bestie to boot.
Last Friday we all got together to have a special dinner in celebration of my graduation. We went to a restaurant so fancy that they actually put my NAME on the menu. They’d asked when I made the reservation if we were celebrating anything, and I told them about getting my degree.
(Click to enlarge, and let’s hear it for crappy cell phone pictures!)
The food was truly exquisite, but it was the company that made it a celebration. We all got all dressed up, had a fancy dinner, went to Tonic (our neighborhood bar) and listened to a good band… it was all terribly grown-up of us. And so much fun!
So yes, I am grateful. For Bill, for Aaron and Michelle, for all of my other friends both near and distant, for my family members both near and distant, and for the online community of friends with whom I have shared so much over the past going-on-thirteen years.
Warm fuzzies for everyone!