Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!!

I may come back later and edit this post with a list of all the things I'm thankful for, but if I wait until I have time to do that it may not be until Easter. For now I just want to say Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. Right now I'm thankful for a couple days off of work and a visit from my Dad. He surprised me a couple weeks ago and said he was thinking of coming up to Washington for Thanksgiving. We made all the arrangements and his plane gets in a couple hours from now.

The most commonly asked next question seems to be: "Are you cooking Thanksgiving dinner for your Dad?" The answer: "No way. I love my Dad too much to do that to him."

Originally I was going to spend Thanksgiving with some friends who are not going home for the holiday. Now that Dad's coming in, all five of us are going out for a Thanksgiving feast. Sometimes you can find family where you least expect it. I love bringing people together.

That said, I wish I could bring all of us together - an all-inclusive holiday with all of my friends and family back home. I'll be thinking about all of you and I will be back home next month for Christmas and New Years. I have a few comments to make about the trip home too, but more about that later.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

To my friends: A few things you need to know

I have some of the best friends in the whole world. The hardest part of leaving Iowa was moving so far away from people who mean the world to me. It took me a lifetime to find friends who are as close as family to me. But while it was so hard to move away and miss spending time together, our friendship gives me so much strength that I could not have made this move without you guys. I miss you terribly, but you have made me a better person and no amount of distance between us will break those ties.

Being in DC, I have met very few people who I consider to be genuine. At times I fear that I may lose part of myself and become like the majority of people I meet in DC. But I have met a few people out here who remind me how important it is to be yourself and the rest of the world be damned. It is through the people in life with whom you make an instant connection with that you’re reminded – even though the entire world has gone mad – there are a few of us who refuse to fall in line with society’s expectations. And I really think that we may just be the only ones who have it figured out.

I’ve realized something lately about those of us who are magnificent misfits. That is, those of us who suspect that maybe we actually have it all figured out in this crazy world we live in – in large part, we tend to be really insecure, rather self-conscious people. It’s really sad, because not fitting in can be a good thing. It can be a great thing. But at the same time, it’s so hard to get over that feeling that something is wrong with you because you’re not like everyone else. I just wanted to write this today to tell you guys – I am so damn glad that I do not fit in here in this capitol city. I have met a select few people (exatly 3, I think) who are really genuine and straightforward. I’ve met others who share my sense of humor and I can laugh and be myself with. They are few and far between, but when you meet someone that you can really be yourself around, it’s a wonderful thing.

J and Pops, you are family; if I could think of a stronger word, I would use it. Keisha and Stephy, you are always there for me and I hope I am always there for you - you are my rock. Anthony – you are in a class all by yourself, my friend. Without your friendship for the last 12 years, I would not have made it through so many hard times. I wish you all the happiness in the world because you deserve it. Jenna and Derek, I am constantly amazed by how close we were able to become and to stay in touch in such a short period of time. Both of you know the true meaning of friendship. Angie, Amanda, and Army Guy - our friendship started with hockey games and I wish we kept in better touch, but you are three of my closest friends. Tyler, I’m not great at keeping in touch with you either, but I still think there are times that you’re the only one who gets me. Brad, Alicia, Darrin, Holly, Richard, and Kerry – I don’t even know if you guys read my blog regularly because we so rarely keep in touch, but you have all come through for me and I hope you will always consider me a friend.

Sorry for getting sentimental, guys. I just don’t want there ever to be any doubt about how much I love all of you. And most importantly & most deservedly – Mom, Dad, Mark, Grandma… you have been putting up with me for far longer than anyone else. Without you, I truly would not be the person I am today. Thank you for making me who I am, thank you for your absolute love and support. If a measure of a person is by the friends they make in life, you should be incredibly proud of me. I am truly blessed.