Here is an excerpt from a poem I love:
Some people come into our lives and quickly go.
Some people move our souls to dance.
They awaken us to new understanding with the passing whisper of their wisdom.
Some people make the sky more beautiful to gaze upon.
They stay in our lives for a while, leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never, ever the same.
When you finally come up for air after choking on all that cheese, I’ll tell you what it has to do with anything.
I’m indisputably someone who has trouble letting go of things. People, stuff, spelling mistakes. Whatever it is, it’s tough for me to let it slide away. I’ve been trying to get better at releasing things from my attention when they don’t deserve it. For the most part, I’m doing a decent job, and I decided to give myself a reward for good behavior.
What’s a good reward for someone who hates letting go of things? The permission to embrace something from the past. So I wrote a random thank you email to someone who has been in my life for almost 7 years in varying capacities: first as a college boyfriend, then as a live-in boyfriend, then as just a roommate (which, while at the time seemed to my friends like the most shocking thing ever, I later learned wasn’t all that uncommon in NYC, where moving out means endless hassles), and finally, after a lot of time and a few less than comfortable stages, as a friend.
This person has done countless things for me over the years, but I thanked him in the email for being the calm, reassuring presence in my life who truly, deep down, had faith in me. He was the first person outside of my family to not only believe in me but get legitimately angry at me when I didn’t believe in myself. He’s the type of person who hardly ever gets visibly mad (let’s not go into what that means for someone who instantly reacts to virtually every emotion she feels even if only for a split second), but nothing frustrated him more than hearing me complain about how I thought I wasn’t accomplishing enough.
As good as I am at holding onto things, I don’t often remember to hold onto the things that matter. So while the thank you was for him, it was also for me, to remind myself to acknowledge the people who have always been there for me, and to make sure they know I know. The fact that it gave me an excuse to post that cheesy poem is just an extra bonus.