Let me tell you about one my most favorite people.
Two years ago, Jamie worked at my clinic as a scheduler. We weren't really buddies back then. We just kind of chatted when we saw each other. Then Jamie quit the clinic (while in her late 30s) to attend school to be a Radiation Therapist. Quite impressive. While in school, she worked as a per diem in our film room - still does, actually. And the film room and I used to share an office. So, Jamie would come in after school and sit in my office and we'd just gab away about clothes and shoes and food.
The pivotal point in my relationship with Jamie was May of 07. I was planning Steve's big birthday party (at work, for shame!) so I'd ask Jamie's opinion on things. Should we have gerberas, Steve's favorite flower, or roses, because they're more classic? Should we have the food on one big table, or spread it around the room? And that's when she just volunteered to help, which completely surprised me. We didn't know each other very well, but she was offering to help me with this huge project. Since I was starting to realize this party was going to be so much more than I had anticipated, I said sure!
Let me tell you, Jamie worked her ass off. She spent a whole Saturday shopping with me. The day of the party, she was there at 5pm sharp to decorate. She met the caterers when they arrived (because I had gone home to get pretty and pick up Steve). She mingled with complete strangers. She kept the food levels up to par. And I remember her coming up to me at one point during the night, saying "People are talking about leaving. You might want to put the cake out now. I've got the candles and the matches, just go stand over there..." She kept me focused and organized and she kept the party flowing while I was being the hostess with the mostest. She was my right hand woman.
We didn't talk for a few weeks after that, so the next email I sent her was the one telling her Steve and I had broken up. She recognized a need and once again, she immediately stepped up. And she's still stepping up.
At dinner Sunday night, I was telling her about someone I had met. I talked about him a little, quoted some of his emails that made me laugh. She didn't say much. Just "Oh yeah? Oh, that's good. " But then on our walk home, I mentioned something about him and she said "I think he would have a hard time keeping up with you."
Wha....? Keeping up with me?
"Yes, you are very vibrant and vivid and just present. You have a spark and just something. I think alot of it is the artist in you. Even when you are feeling low there is an inner light that is unmistakable, I think it draws people to you."
I would have never imagined myself as someone with an inner light that's hard to keep up with. Especially as I sit here in front of my computer (as I have for the past three hours....yes, three hours) in my sweats, burping because I've been drinking pepsi all night.
I'm hard to keep up with?
Sometimes it takes your friends reflecting yourself back to you in order to get a less skewed picture of yourself. Jamie sees me in this weird light in which I've never seen myself. She's held (and is still holding) my hand through the worst year of my life and she always has nothing but positive and inspiring things to say to me and about me. She's gotten me to wear smalls instead of larges since I'm, you know, smaller now and she is the key advisor on the boudoir because she shares the same vision for a love nest as I do. I'm constantly texting her pictures of things that I think suit our vision.
She's teaching me to embrace being a single, strong woman and that lacey underwear is not just for special occasions because we should feel special every single day. And she assures me things are only going to get better from here.
Jamie is one of those people to which I will be forever connected. We may drift apart in the future, but one day I'll get a call out of the blue and hear "Hi cupcake! How ya doin'?" and we'll fall right back into it.
Here's props to Jamie, who loves champagne as much as I do.