The things that matter (An ode to my friends)

I am not someone who is prone to being overly sentimental. I am not prone to letting people in or coming close. When you have been hurt, burned or simply not have it in your nature to do so, it becomes harder and harder over time to let people in. After everything that occurred in my life in high school and the loss of friendships I sustained because of it, I lost a lot of faith in close friendships. Among the things that I sustained because of that situation, that is probably the most hurtful. It took me a great deal of time to recover, to try, to risk opening up again and letting friendship in.

It's a hard thing to admit. And over the years, I have slowly but surely, piece by piece taken small steps to undo that feeling. Thankfully for me, time and time again, I have been shown that my experiences in the past were in fact the exception, rather than the rule. I am extremely blessed to have amazing friends. Whether they are friends that I talk to everyday or friends I barely talk to more than a handful of times in a year, I realize at this time in my life: I have amazing friends, I am incredibly blessed.

Over the weekend  I went to Ashland, OR for the Lithia Loop Marathon. It was one of the most fun weekends I have had in a long long time. And during all of that fun, I felt constantly felt immersed in a deep imbibing sense of peace. I felt a deep sense of gratitude for the great people in my life.

My friends, each and everyone of them, is incredibly special to me. I love my friends, I value them and I am sure I fail short in letting them know how much they have shaped and influenced my life. I wish there was some way I could tell each and everyone of them how amazing, beautiful and valued they are. Over the years, the bonds grow deeper and my fear diminishes, my faith renews.

So instead of going on and on, this is just to say: thanks friends. Thanks everyone, for just being you. To someone, whether it is me or someone else, you have made a difference, you have touched or shaped a life. The value of being a real friend to someone can never be diminished, you (may) never know how much it means to the people you extend that to. It is awesome and beautiful.