The Kindness of Others

There are days in my life when I need someone to remind me how good my little corner of the world actually is.

Not the very bad days…the days when I collapse in bed and cry myself to sleep are usually a lost cause. I just lay there, knees to my chest, and wait for morning, knowing that nothing anyone can say will reach that part of me that’s hurting so bad.

It’s not the the days when everything seems to go right, either. Of course it isn’t. On the days I feel productive and loved and I fall asleep happy, I can remind myself. No help needed then.

No. It’s those in-between days. The ones where I feel like I’m swimming against a semi-strong current. It’s not pushing me back–I don’t feel like I’m losing ground–but I just can’t seem to get ahead either. On those kind of days, nothing seems to go right. My outfit doesn’t quite match as well as I wanted it to. The plans I was really counting on fell through. The dinner I was super pumped about making for myself turns out awful.

I am a very firm believer in karma. Treat others with respect, speak kindly to them, and you will receive much of the same in return. So are those bad days–the ones that make life a little bit harder but not quite unbearable–a product of me pissing off the universe?

Probably. As hard as I try, I consistently feel like I owe much more than I’ve received. I snap at people who were really only trying to help. I am sarcastic more than my fair share, and I take advantage of the compassion that others have shown to me. I’m stubborn as hell and needier than I care to admit.

No matter how much I may deserve those days, they still hit me like a physical blow. They knock the air out of me, and I’m unsure of where to turn. String more than one of those days together? I’m starting to doubt myself like crazy and wondering how on Earth this is going to get better.

Sometimes, more often than not, I get lucky on the days like that. Someone in my life will have impeccable timing and reach out exactly when I need it most. And not only because I have awesome people in my life who are willing to be my savior on those nights, because I absolutely do. But usually, the person who saves me has exactly zero idea that my world is on the verge of a (perhaps overdramatic) collapse.

They just appear. Out of nowhere, with exactly what I needed to drag myself out of the hole I was so willing to sink into not 5 minutes before.

An extra-long phone call from that best friend I’ve been seriously missing. A Sunday afternoon dinner invitation. Sitting next to that coworker I’m only kind of friends with in that meeting I’ve been dreading all week and having their snarky comments and perfectly timed eye rolls turn it into my favorite meeting all month. An e-mail about nothing but how much a friend misses eating at Jimmy John’s.

I am lucky. Beyond lucky, actually. You all make my heart happy. I don’t say it enough, but I need you, perhaps more than you have imagined. Maybe you have imagined it–maybe I’ve even told you before. But you deserve to hear it again.

Thank you. For getting me through those days when I can’t seem to pinpoint why I’m feeling depressed. For listening to me ramble on about my little problems and offering whatever solution you can. Thank you for hugging me and loving me back and giving me your addresses to send baked goods to.

You all rock.

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