so my last blog post may have seemed a bit disjointed, we got the call for the next mission literally as i was typing it up. so i didnt get to finish the half that i wanted to write for valentines day and how much i adore and appreciate all of my friends with their unique attributes and amazing qualities. i'll focus on that here, and leave the next blog post for the discussion of the most recent mission. here we go!!!
one of the greatest blessings of my life has been all of the inspiring, dedicated, talented people i have met over the miles and years. and of course, most of them dont even realize how effin awesome they are. and it can start in a flash, a chance meeting that leaves me stunned with amazement about the fantastic person i just met. (i know this will all sound ridiculously gushy, but hey, i missed v-day so i get to let it out.) anyway, for example theres amy lee, whom i met just crashing on her couch one night when i was on tour in the states for this non-profit, and after a few hours of chatting about our goals, ambitions, fears, i knew she would forever be in my heart. kismet is the only word. of course im sure it will be like most of the people in my life, we will connect off and on as long as i am in the same country,or at least work in the same group. but as time goes we will have even bigger dreams we are working on, and think of each other only with sweet reminiscence. but thats okay. because already in the months of knowing her she has encouraged and propelled me in my own work, and brightened my life in having a small glimpse at her realizing her own goals. she is selfless without being a martyr, and driven without bring aggressive. i am fortunate for having known her, and look forward to following what i know will be a successful career and a beautiful life, even if i am not there to share it with her. and to sweeten it even further, she is now dating one of my favorite men. clay, a man that is so gentle and kind but still exudes a comforting masculinity, he is a rarity. i joked on my facebook that i think i may be happier that they are dating than any relationship i could have of my own, but i think it is actually true (no pressure guys).
i promise not to wax nostalgic about all of my wonderful friends, but just a few words while i am feeling such a rare explosion of emotion. teddy, i miss you so much, there's no one else i can love the ocean as much with, and then go back and be catty about the bitches on project runway. lila, you will find what you are looking for, i promise. you are too rich of character to languish without direction, if you dont find it, it will most assuredly find you. adam, for the first time with anyone i think i am not as envious of your life as envious of those who get to share it with you. kaz, i should tell you every day how much you mean to me. you are the best and truest friend a person could have. i did not remember that enough in my time of suffering, and i know you have forgiven me for that, but again, you are a man without equal, compassionate beyond compare. i love you so, and hope i can share this with your new beautiful daughter. julia, i would tell you to get over your self-consciousness and let others see what an amazing woman you are, but i will just let you be you and get to savor that knowledge all to myself and the others who see your greatness. raul, i have always felt like you are my number one cheerleader, and you have given me more support than you realize. brandt, with all you went through, for you to give me such heartfelt words of support when i needed them most, i will never forget that. every accomplishment i am making now is in part due to your support, and i will love you always for it. artoff, i dont care if you think its weird that i say this, but i so wish i lived near you cause i think we would hang out constantly and be the absolute best of chums. or id like to think so :). and there are so many people i only met a few times that have impacted me permanently, so much so that i think you would be freaked out if i kept naming names. but to all of the people ive met in the last years who have inspired me; stephanie, sachi, ben, sam, sunny, jesse, mark, you touch people more than you know. the only thing that was missing this valentines day was a crush, someone to pine over longingly, to ache to be near, or just talk to. but i think my love quota has been more than filled my these wonderful friends, and i will consider myself lucky to exchange the passing fancy for the everlasting friendship.
if you havent all stopped reading already (if you even started) feel free to break off now, but i have got to tell my father exactly how much he means to me. sometimes i have gotten angry with him, and have blamed him for not living up to my expectations of what a father should be. and im sure i will due so again, i am as selfish and short sighted as the next person. but while i am here and salient i will tell him what is honestly in my heart, without being skewed by perceived hurts. dad, i love you more than i can ever express in words. i know that you feel that you may have not lived up to the expectations you had as a young man. you have reached a time in you life that we all come to, questioning the roads taken; and those that you passed by with a glance, maybe a longing glance at that. i of course cannot tell you which decisions that you made were right or wrong, or where you may have taken a misstep. but i can tell you that your decisions have allowed your daughter to live a life she never thought possible. i dont really remember having great ambitions as a child, i never wanted to be a ballerina or an astronaut, didnt know how i felt about college until i got there, i just figured things happened as they did, and i would let them. these were not negatives, it was because i had a sense of openness, that why limit myself to one choice because i could do anything in the whole world that i wanted. and it was because of you, because of the strength and security you gave me that i could feel comfortable with such a seemingly unstable existence. and in my short time here i have accomplished more than i would have ever expected. it has been hard at times; heartbreaking, frustrating, incomprehensible. but that is what makes the beautiful parts of life so worth living. so many times i have looked through the streets of kyoto with the cherry blossoms falling, or over the mountains of laos with the winding mekong in the distance, or most often on my moto, singing, or even screaming to myself in my helmet because i just cannot contain my joy. all of those times i have thought of what you have done for me and our family.
i know that sometimes i will forget all of this. forgive
me, i am human, the slights we feel to our hearts seems to ram any remembrance of kindness out of our minds. but please remember that deep in the core of who i am as a human being, i will be ever grateful of your sacrifices. i know that at times you wish it was you out there hiking the jungles in kauai. but i also know that you would give up your chance to do it every time if it meant that your child could do it in your stead. so dad, i have this picture of us together up here in my room at the shelter, of us with rommel getting ready to leave on a bike trip up the coast. i think you have the same one at your desk. (i am so hoping that no one else is reading this because the cheesiness has gotten out of hand, but i dont care.) im looking at that photo right now (as much as i can see through the tears), and i think i feel for the very first time the thing you have been talking about, being disappointed that there is no afterlife. i have always said that the experiences that i have had already have been fulfilling enough, and i dont need anything to come after it. well its true, except for the fact of how much i would love another life with you and cameron and mom. luckily when i am gone i wont actually be able to miss you, because i didnt miss you before i was born, so i wont miss you after i die. but my goodness i miss you now. so in making sure that we make the most of our meager time here, i'll continue to play out all of the amazing adventures to you, even the seemingly mundane details that make the story so much richer. and i will thank you every time we talk, and remind you that while i may have been able to do some of these things without you, i would never have been able to feel so complete, and certainly not so loved. i love you dad. (and cameron, i love you because you're my brother ;). and for orating since dad cant work a computer.)