In the words of Citizen Cope, "life is short but the summer is long." And this summer has been very long. For a number of reasons I just haven't really been myself most days. But I'm hoping that as the temperature continues to drop, I'll continue to get back to being me.
But this summer has also had plenty of good in it. One thing that has become more clear to me than ever before is that I truly do have the best friends in the world. And not just my three best college friends, but friends from work, book club, and just life. I keep people at arm's length, behind steel walls, and not everyone wants to push through. In fact, most don't, and that's understandable. But there are some really stubborn people out there and they seem to be in abundance in my life. They persist. They wait. They care.
Needing people can be so hard sometimes, and I fail at it most of the time, but there are people who know what I need and are just...there. And though they are probably a day away from grabbing me by the shoulders and yelling, "Hey, Dummy! I care about you!," they just wait another day. And sometimes another day.
There is basically one overpowering belief that governs my life and it is this: Everything happens for a reason. It's not always clear and it can be a frustratingly slow process before you discover that reason, but when it's clear, suddenly entire weeks or months make sense. It doesn't help in the interim, but it's always in the background, giving hope, and sometimes that's enough.
I've never had a ton of friends and have never really wanted them. I am more comfortable with a small, reliable, trustworthy group of women (because they are almost always women) that I can laugh with, rant to, drink with, whine to, and try not to cry in front of. And if all the ups and downs of life are necessary to make me realize what good ones I have now, in this city, then that's my reason. After nearly four years here I have some friends that are making every day worth it, making every laugh greater than the last, and making me who I am supposed to be. Even if I'm not very good at it most days. And even though I have trouble telling them what they mean to me without the aid of alcohol.