Rel’s friend got her that quote on a canvas for Christmas last year and it sits above our coach on a shelf. As I strolled lazily (totally a word – in my world at least) into our living room this morning, cursing the sun for coming up to quickly signalling the real world was calling, I couldn’t help but smile as that was one of the first things I saw. These past few months have been a constant reminder of just how true that is in my life.
Now I have an amazing family. A mom and dad that have given me so many great traits and are goofy for days, that I really do enjoy hanging out with, and have taught me to be the strong woman I proudly say I am. Two sisters who amaze me every day with the challenges they overcome, how much they’ve grown, and how beautiful they are as they find their niche in life and get older. I miss them a lot as I now live a couple hours away and we’re all busy with our own lives, but I take comfort in the fact that I STILL come home to a family every night though it may be different. My roommates have become so much more to me than just the girls who live down the hall. We rarely go more than an hour without texting, g-chatting, facebooking, and snapchatting (if Lans ever gets her shit together – Behks and I would greatly appreciate it). And I find that at the end of the day whether it be good, bad, or mediocre I cant wait to come home. Family dinners, late night work sessions together in the living room, or even just hanging out in Rel’s bed while I read and she does homework is what makes the bad days a little better and the good days great.
A couple weeks ago I took a long anticipated trip to NYC. I say long anticipated because they are a whole different kind of family that I’ve been missing for months. We were all on a not so great, long term engagement when we first started with our Firm and made a connection that rivals that of college friends you spend years with. As we all dispersed onto new projects, we did our best to stay in touch but life happens. You get busy, fall into a new and most likely opposite schedule, and it gets harder to make the time to keep in contact like you use to. The best part is that the minute we’re all in the same room, it’s like nothing ever changed. The eight months we hadn’t seen each other seemed like days and we picked up where we left off. Girl’s brunch was full of random chatter, tears from laughing and reminiscing on the craziness that was our lives just a year ago. Meeting up with the guys nothing changed as we were all just as rowdy, going through the city arm in arm, and excited to see where the night will take us. It’s funny how meeting someone at first can seem so insignificant, but now looking back I can’t picture not having them in my life. Not being able to banter back and forth, call each other after weeks and still get the same great advice, planning trips and laughing at the ones we’ve already taken (the bottom picture below is a little reunion shot from the group who went to Mardi Gras – what an adventure). I’m pretty damn lucky that I have them, and I doubt they will ever realize how much just knowing them has made me a better person. Some of the toughest times in my life overlapped seeing them every week, and it’s because of that I was able to push through and keep smiling. I’ll love them forever for that.
Now this past weekend was the real kicker in the “WOW, how am I so lucky that this is my life.” Rel and Lan’s have a group of guy friends from college that decided to pull together and organize a ski trip. Lucky for me, I had met a couple of them and they were so great and invited me to tag along. Going into this I have to admit I was a little nervous. I really didn’t know more than 5 of the 16 people going and wasn’t sure how it was going to play out. I get along with pretty much anyone, but everyone already had such deep roots established. I couldn’t have been more wrong as more and more people arrived at the house and it was clear that for this one weekend the rest of the world didn’t matter and we were all going to be family. Night one us girls had already banded together and planned out the meals for the rest of the weekend and people that were just introduced were already laughing and snapping selfies of each other with random cameras on the counter. It only got better as we started exploring the town, skiing, bobsledding (picture below to prove it – AWESOME; highly recommend it), snow shoeing, lazy movie watching, and starting up Twister competitions. At one point during the last night when a dance party had just wrapped and we were on to another card game, Lans and I looked at each other and exclaimed at the same time “HOW is this our life!” A year ago, never could I have ever thought I would be in a house in Lake Placid with these people. Heck a year ago I didn’t even know most of these people existed! Now here I am wishing I was still there.
Moral of the story – I am SO LUCKY to have these people in my life. To be able to travel and get away from the city for a weekend and kick it in a house at an address that google doesn’t even recognize. To come home to roommates who love me like a sister and would be there in a second if ever I needed them. To have family in different cities, near and far, and know no matter what our friendship will always be there. No matter how much or little I see these people they are my family. They are the family I choose to supplement what I’m already lucky enough to have.