Written because she’s scared (and a bit sick) of birthdays. But you, Carina, are definitely worth celebrating.
It started with an e-mail. A few texts. A youth group. And then camp. Personally, I think the origins of our story are a bit overplayed, after 9+ years of writing about them in various journals and blogs.
Besides, we hardly ever go back to the beginning anymore.
And, looking back on the last few years, I think I understand why. We never needed each other more than we did in our 20’s.
There were boys and epic heartbreaks. Pre-graduation jitters. Post-graduation life bombs and a sudden fear of the future. The career crisis of 2010. Odd jobs, a few horrible bosses, resignations and new dreams. The realer life got, the harder our roots clung on to all that we knew to be constant.
You are the Mitchell to my Cam (hahaha, the picture above is perfect) and this is my grand gesture of love on your special day, my boombox (held with two hands, arms outstretched, Lloyd Dobler-style, of course) outside your front lawn.
I hope this year, you learn to be even braver. Twenty-two was the year of your Great Mountain. And though the climb is far from over, I just want you to know how impressed I am by your courage. Thank you for being so very true to yourself.
Though a lot of people know you as @presidents, the owner of Nothing Spaces, Malang’s granddaughter, or (yes, I used the Oxford comma just for you!) that really cool girl on the internet, never forget that I got to see you as a warring orc (or was it Gimli?) at 6 AM, in the CCF Annex, several years ago. For some reason, I believe that that says more about our closeness than anything else.
I know that we are slowly running out of time. There is that looming inevitability of things changing greatly. The possibility of you living abroad. Or me getting married. (Who knows? Maybe the latter will precede the former.) And so my greatest hope, while you are still here and while I am still single, is that we will not cease to go on adventures — even if our definition of adventures is lazy afternoons in your room, eating junk food and tweeting while watching She’s The Man. (I really miss that movie, btw.)
This is getting long and there is still so much to be said. Things like:
- You are one of my heroes.
- I still miss some of the stupid things (roleplaying + chasing + manic dancing) we used to do in high school.
- I am a big fan of your art and writing.
- I could’ve never gotten through 2010’s huge pile of emotional crap without you.
- Our inside jokes are the best!
- I am always on your side.
- Remember when you told me about Sarie asking you, a few months ago, who belonged to your list of people you trusted unconditionally? You said that you felt sad that the list was always changing, but I hope I stay on yours because you are always on mine.
- You are put together beautifully.
Because this could stretch on and on and on, until the world gets sick of us both, let me end with three things.
The first is an excerpt of a poem, The Origin Story, by Sarah Kay, the girl who inspired the ten things we know to be true, and her best friend, Phil Kaye:
But I have seen the best of you and the worst of you and I choose both. I want to share ever single one of your sunshines and save some for later. I will tuck them into my pockets so I can give them back to you when the rains fall hard. Friend, I want to be the mirror that reminds you to love yourself. I want to be the air in your lungs to remind you to breathe easy. When the walls come down, when the thunder rumbles, when nobody else is home, hold my hand and I promise I won’t let go
The second: There is nothing I can say here that I can’t tell you in person.
Lastly: I love you always, all ways. Happy, happy birthday, love.