I know, I know, that sounds obnoxious, but I promise you should keep reading.
For every season of my life until recently, I can count on one hand how many 'close' friends I had, the sort of friends who see your heart. I mean, I live with my childhood/forever soulmate and I consider my parents two of my closest confidantes. Two of my college roommates live nearby, and I LOVE that. And with these amazing friends, I was happy. I had these constants in my life, the people who challenged me and supported me in all the avenues of my life.
But holy cow y'all. Friends are fantastic and can come in the most unexpected of places. And who says there's a limit to how many besties one can have?
Sitting around a table of some pretty amazing people tonight (all of whom I have met within the past eight months) had my heart fluttering in the best of ways. The people I sat with are just a sampling of the many I am proud to call "friend," proud to love and cherish. Opening up to them, being vulnerable with them and with others has led to phenomenal things that I never could have imagined would happen.
Two of these people helped me teach a high school mobile photography class last week.
I co-founded a nonprofit with one of these.
Two of them came to my family Christmas dinner this year.
One of them coached me through buying my first camera and has helped me channel this interest in photography into something more than just a hobby.
One of these people sat on a stranger's front porch with me until the wee hours of the morning, discussing life and dreams.
A handful of them sit next to me at church every Sunday.
Four of them have adopted me as part of their own little families.
All of these people helped me celebrate entering a new year of life with a big surprise.
These people entered my life at potentially one of the most trying seasons I have had so far, which I believe allowed me to reach a point of vulnerability with them much faster than if I had met them at any other time.
They teach me new things, they listen to me, they support me and adventure with me. These are just a few of them, but these are my people.
Tonight, as we gathered to celebrate the birthday of one, I was filled with immense gratitude...for these people and for all of my amazing friends, for the community I have here in Houston from all stages of my life, for realizing there is no limit to the people I can let into my heart.
Tonight, I am thankful.
all my love,