Day 9- A picture of your friends
I have truly been blessed with some of the most amazing people as my closest friends. I’m a pretty social person,so the list of my acquaintances seems pretty endless when I sit here and think about it, but the closest people in my life, the friends that have somehow become family, are very few.
I was dating this women named Iris who I met while I was working in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, hosting an open mic. She kept insisting that she wanted me to meet her friends, and so the following week, she invited them all to the open mic. We met near the turnstiles of the subway, and introductions were pretty general. We walked over to the show, and had a GREAT time during the 1 hour open bar. Too great of a time, because I have to admit that after about 20 minutes, we were completely wrecked! I honestly don’t really remember most of that night, with the exception of maybe singing a song a capella, wrongly introducing one of the artists, and going on and on about how hilarious Spongebob was as I proceeded to recite my favorite episode word for word. Truly ridiculous, I know! But I also remember talking about the gay beach that they would go to pretty often, and inviting them to stay the night at my house that coming weekend so we could head out there all together and make the best of the humid NY July weather. And that was how it started! That was the beginning of the longest relationships I have ever had. There was initially one more person who was an integral part of our now “new and improved” quartet, but she cut us off for reasons that we still don’t know, just like that, after over 10 years of friendship. I won’t lie and say I don’t miss her sometimes, but her disconnecting from our group without a word as to why, helped the rest of us to understand why we are so important to each other and allows us to really be honest and gentle with each other.
After that fateful Tuesday night at the open mic, which led to the slumber party and beach escape, came a month of living at Marco’s house. That was one of the best summers of my life! We did nothing all day but play games, and watch the Olympics, listen to music, and well, in my case, fall in love! I began dating Tee at that time (which lasted for a little over a year before both of us decided that we were better off as friends, and we are!). These past 13 years, with them in my life, have been filled with camping, boating, Breast Cancer walks, weddings, babies, beach trips, BBQ’s, engagements, losses, new jobs and promotions, broken hearts, suicide attempts, hospital visits, graduations, fire pits, wine…you name it, as friends, we have been through it all, rejoiced, cried, hurt, and gotten over it! I couldn’t have asked for better people in my life. Honestly, I have no idea why, but I’m choking up thinking about the love that I have for my friends as I write this.
I don’t even know where to start when it comes to Marco. There are many times in my life when I felt like, I just couldn’t go on. That taking my life was way better than having to deal with some of the issues that have plagued me. I don’t even know how many times he has saved my life. Literally and figuratively saved. my. life…Our friendship is the type that you write hallmark cards about. Marco and I, we’re kindred spirits. Easy going, carefree, lovers of nature and learning new things. We have the same temperament, similar likes and dislikes, and we complement each other pretty well. He’s kind, generous with his time and money and efforts, compassionate, gentle. He’s a hot mess, and not afraid to show it. He’s brave, and intelligent, and affectionate. He’s the light at the end of the tunnel most days. He’s all the adjectives in the world, but at the same time, not a single one fits him well enough. He’s the best man in my life, and I’m pretty sure, hell, I’m certain, he always will be…
My relationship with Tee started out romantic, but after living together for a while (we totally U-Hauled) we knew it would just be better to be friends. Our friendship has truly flourished over the years. We started out strong, and then things got a little rocky after our break up, but somewhere in the aftermath of that, she has become the realist friend I could have ever asked for. Whenever I’m having a serious dilemma, I talk to Tee because she’s never gonna sugar coat things. She’s going to present the problem and the solution from a ton of different angles. She’s gonna question my choices, why I made them, and what the benefit and detrement is. She’s honesty, and energy, and spirit. She’s like an ice cream sundae on a hot summer day. She’s cool, and calm, and collected. She’s a shoulder to lean on, and an attentive listener, and unconditional love, and I’m so lucky to be on the receiving end of that.
Nikki and I met a few days after that night at the open mic. She was the friend who had a young son (3 at the time) and had a little more difficulty getting out on a week night like the rest of us. If I remember correctly, we met at Marco’s house, and became close pretty quickly. She’s the friend that will clear out a room in her house for you when you have nowhere else to go. The one that will send her girlfriend to pick you up after your ex wife kicks you out because she’s still at work and can’t do it herself. She’s a true señorita and puts her son, fiancé, and the three of us pretty much before anything else. She’s our early-to-bed-so-quick-write-on-her-face-with-makeup entertainment. She’s an awesome Pampered Chef. She’s laughter, and warm sweaters right out of the dryer, and an awesome ROTC Cadet Super Mom. She’s supportive, and helpful, and unselfish. She’s a good sport (when we get her with makeup EVERY SINGLE TIME!), and a breath of fresh air, and a hopeless romantic. I’m blessed to have her vibrant and shiny light in my life.
There really is a solid group of about 10 of us, when you include everyone’s significant other. And each one has such a special place in my heart. They are my chosen family, the people I turn to when the world on my shoulders gets too heavy to bear on my own. They are my protectors, my sunny day, and the best aunts and uncles my kids could have ever asked for. And when we’re all together, we’re effing hilarious! And I think we’d all agree, the laughter makes it special and magical and ours. Only ours…