Self Love

27 Aug

Photo credit: stephcookie @ Flickr

Tuesday I headed to Portland to visit Brad, a cowboy I cooked with in Tahoe.  (When I describe him as a cowboy I mean that in a literal sense: the day we meet was his first day of work in a fine-dining restaurant.  He was wearing skin-tight jeans, an enormous belt buckle, broken-in boots, and a Stetson.)  I’m broke and I do not have a reliable stream of income, so taking any sort of vacation seemed ridiculous, but this trip seemed like it was make or break for our friendship.  We haven’t seen each other in about a year, I’d already postponed the trip once since I’d just quit my job, and he’s planning to move to Kentucky.  I enjoy being friends with him, and the trip was the best chance to show him that for the foreseeable future.

I began to feel better as soon as I arrived.  We spent most of the time just talking and talking and talking.  He’s a talker by any measure, but even I wanted to reminisce and catch up and just share my life.  He managed to make me feel better about quitting and about the quality of the work that I do and about my new venture.  We’re very, very different people, but both of us are more curious than critical, so we can enjoy each other.

We also went up to Seattle to visit our friend Breann, another former coworker that I hadn’t seen in over a year.  The time we were closest was a time of transition for all of us, so it was nice being around people who understand that part of my history.  As Brad and I discussed, we’re all very different, but we’re all intelligent have similar values, so we can enjoy each other.

It’s that simple enjoyment that I’m still thinking about.  All I did was spend some time enjoying myself and remembering what I have to offer and enjoying my friends and appreciating what they have to offer, but it made me feel more alive and more optimistic and more ambitious.  (It also literally made me feel better: on the drive down there I was developing an earache, but I felt great the next morning.)

Seeing people who care about me and having the opportunity to show them care and love made it easier for me love myself.  It’s not much of a revelation, but it could be a revolution if I can live it.

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