So, the other day I was deleting something like 47,363 emails because I keep getting threatening notes from Microsoft about how they are going to sever my email access on account of me keeping too many emails which I am pretty sure is a scam because how did Bill Gates get to be so rich and successful if he doesn’t even bother to hire people who know how to spell??? Even so, they made a valid point with their insistence that my saved emails were taking over the internet and people needed the space to complain about the new president, so I deleted a shit ton of old pointless correspondence.
During my reviewal of far too many emails of no consequence, I stumbled upon this little beauty, and I liked it, so I thought I’d send it to you again, because you’re wonderful and I adore you. I did a smidgy-widgen of editing, but it’s mostly the same email you read in 2013, so feel free to wax nostalgic over those long gone days of three years ago.
I love you.
It’s 4 a.m. here and I can’t sleep and I got to thinking of you and all of a sudden I have a whole bunch of feelings, so I’m going to write this, but please forgive if it rambles (or makes no sense whatsoever) on account of my being tired.
You know what my favorite thing always was about Jehovah?
Jehovah, as I believed in him, made it so that the only thing that mattered in life was WHY you do what you do, and how hard you try. Nothing else. In the human element, achievement is the measure. Being good at things is more important than being good. But my interpretation of Jehovah trumped that, and made it so the only thing that mattered was coming from a good motive and trying as hard as I could.
You will recall I sucked at a lot of things, achievements-wise, (sucking at being a Witness probably being the most ironic… Haha… But seriously …) but I was ok with it bc I knew I was good, and that wins.
I suppose this is not the first time in life you have questioned your worth or been insecure, but it is the first time I’ve seen it.
It breaks my heart.
I wish you could ever know how profoundly I have adored you all this time. How beautiful you are, not just to look at, but how beautiful you just ARE, how talented, how clever, how good. To this day, I love to go out with you in a group and just watch you interact with people. You have such a beautiful way about you, and you are so completely enchanting. It is so humbling to me, and makes me so proud to realize that you’re not just my best friend, and my most dearly loved sister, but I am yours too. That YOU, this amazing, beautiful, gifted, brilliant, darling woman I so love, picked ME to be your friend.
It is enough for you to be alive in the world and be you. That simple thing makes an amazing and profound difference in the world. It’s been a long time since we were around each other enough to know the ins and outs of each other’s behaviors and lives. I guess I don’t really know what you were like at work. I don’t know the details of how you interact with your kids, or people, or anything, really. I just know YOU. Just the intangible sense of who you are. And so I never – EVER – question whether you are good at anything, bc I just KNOW that you are GOOD. And I know I don’t say it as often as I should, certainly not as often as it happens (but in my defense, it probably would start to get creepy at a certain point…), but honestly, at at least one point in every single day, I have a moment of awareness of you, maybe some particular action or statement, but as often as not, just an awareness that you EXIST IN THE WORLD AS YOU, and it makes my life better.
I love you so much.
I feel like you have a fear of being a screw up. I wish you didn’t. I can’t cure you, but I would like to tell you a story about life from the perspective of a screw up, namely…. Me. 🙂
I am 35 years old, I am divorced, and I live in a van down by the river…
Seriously. It’s weird how close to true that is for me… Thank god I don’t LOOK like Chris Farley on top of it all… (Hey, wait… I DON’T look like Chris Farley, do I???) (just kidding. I know I don’t. I look like Jim Carey.)
From a certain perspective, I am a total screw up. Marriage – thirteen predominantly lousy years, topped off with divorce. Wasted most of my life in a religion and belief system that it turns out I do not actually believe in at all. Invested YEARS of my life in raising a child who now hates me. I am disowned by my father and sometimes my mother and all but one of my siblings (I am now up to two siblings speaking to me. Heh, heh. I am scratching and clawing my way back in!). I have a random history of weird jobs, and even weirder boyfriends…. I have no career, nor do I have any hope of landing one since I have no inkling what I want to be when I grow up, one attempt after another at any sort of romantic relationship has failed miserably, I have relatively no chance of ever getting to be a mother – or a totally kick ass grandma, I spend most of my free time – and a ridiculous percentage of my disposable income – at a bar (yet somehow I still can’t hold my liquor…), I have never been off of this continent, I live in a room I rent in someone else’s house, drive a piece of shit car, and I am more than likely going to die old and alone with a significant collection of polyester house dresses and 47 cats.
And you know what??
I. AM. AWESOME.
Yep, divorced. But by the end of that god-forsaken marriage, I was a goddamn good wife. Wasn’t my fault it didn’t work.
The Girl hates me. Ok. She is not the boss of what I get to be proud of. And she is still the thing I am the most proud of in my whole life. I did a good job. I was a good “mom”. Nobody else will ever know that, not even her. Bc only I really know what I did and why I did it. But I know.
I love my family. Would have done anything for them back when we were a family. Still would. And they hate me for my trouble. Eh. I think it’s pretty awesome that I learned to live without them AND without being mad at them either. Yay for the lessons learned from my “failed” family.
Jobs, boyfriends, blabbity blah.
The thing is, shit in my life doesn’t “work”. But I am a RAGING success, because I have a good heart and I try hard. And if all I ever have to show for it is a house full of cats and polyester dresses – and the most kick ass best friend EVER – I win.
Here’s my point.
You had a life. It blew up. You made a new one. It blew up. You made a new one. We take for granted what we have done and what we have accomplished bc it’s us, and we don’t give ourselves credit.
Stop and realize the character it takes to walk away from being a Witness like you did. Think how many people leave and then live in a gutter life bc they can’t get thru the guilt, or go crawling back bc they can’t deal with the new challenges, or just fake it their whole lives. You ROCKED it. You built a life, and you learned a new way to be a solid person. That’s huge.
Think about the guts it takes to pack up yourself and your kid and walk away from a guy who is hurting you. You did that. That’s HUGE. Lots of people don’t. You did it, and you worked as hard as you had to work to make it on your own. And when the time came, you weren’t too scared to try again. And every time you have to pull up and start over, you do it. Because you are an incredible person.
Look how sick you were, with the kids, and in general. And you don’t stop, you don’t give up, you get shit done and you take on more than you have to. Cuz you’re AWESOME.
Your kids will never know what a good mom you are, not entirely. That’s in the mom contract somewhere. They will love you, sometimes they will appreciate you, but they will never know. Probably no one will ever really know. You have to decide that you are going to know, and give yourself credit for it, and that has to be enough.
“Success” is a dumb idea. Be careful of that. You stand and look at a thing that isn’t going like you want it to, and you think you’ve failed. Don’t do that. YOU ARE AWESOME. Look back, be objective. See what you’ve done, not necessarily how it turned out, but what you’ve DONE. And recognize that better things come when the lousy things are out of the way. You are loyal. To a fault. Sometimes we get dumped by things that don’t serve us bc we would never have the sense to walk away by our own choice. You had a dumb job. (And a dumb husband??) You are GOING to have a fantastic one. (Job, that is. You don’t have to get another husband.) (Except that we don’t want to waste that Pinterest board about weddings, so maybe you should find another one…) (Cuz I don’t want to.)
Whatever happens from now til forever, I promise that you will always have a friend who loves you more than you will ever know, probably more than any other friend ever in all of world history, and that my life is immeasurably better every single day just bc you are alive, whether you do a goddamn thing right or not.
Just go ahead and be happy, doll. Even when things are a mess. You deserve it more than you think you do.
I love you best.