But the 19 months away changed it some how.
My parents live 5 minutes away again, my lovelies within last minute I-need-to-see-you-now-distance, my nephews are once again now huggable close, yet things are different.
Maybe it's less that things are different, and I am different.
My safe harbor, the one that used to resonate in this place has moved and is now found in people:
~Friends that text me at all hours of the day to make me smile, ask a question,
share a thought or just check-in,
~Sisters that meet me in a heartbeat when I need a favor,
~Family that meets for last minute dinners
~Late night Internet conversations with women I haven't met in
person but know me better than most
~People that know just when I need a boost and surprise me with kind words, a sweet card or even an awesome t-shirt to remind me to SHINE.
These people are my safe harbor. My safe harbor looks a little different that I imagined it would. But this difference isn't a bad thing. Friendships that I thought would last the length of time, didn't but were replaced with people that know me better than I could have ever imagined. People that know what my heart beats for, how to love me and more importantly, how to welcome me in and let me love them.
Having a safe harbor (or a home team) is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. Cultivating friendships and going through life with people rather than alone is one of the most important things you can do for yourself.
Helen Keller said it best when she said "“I would rather walk with a friend in the dark, than alone in the light." And I can only know she's right because I have friends that have joined me in the darkness. Friends that have seen my pain and rather than walk away, enveloped themselves in it. People that have seen me at my ugliest and my most bitter times and have still stood next to me. Those that have carried me when I couldn't move forward or have let me carry them when they too needed someone.
I am so grateful to be home. And although this move to Houston made me re-evaluate truly what (and where) home is, being back amidst people that know you and love you anyways is beautiful. The difference from life before we moved and to life as we moved back here is that I now know the resounding importance of my friends. That life can change quickly and only the relationships that you actively invest in will remain. These relationships will change as well, but with a little work they will remain strong. As a woman and a mom, I need these relationships and these friendships. And I need to invest in them whole heartily; my time, my laughter, and my tears. I am so blessed to have such wonderful friendships. I am looking forward to see how they grow in this coming year.
“There is nothing I would not do for those who are really my friends. I have no notion of loving people by halves, it is not my nature.” - Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)