belly laughs and 180-somethings

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It was one of those nights where the evening was filled with an energy, perhaps it was from the feeling of Fall flirting with my city, but it was electric. It was a perfect night for a long walk with a good friend.

Talk of the usual..our week’s pressures and life’s crunches, to agreeing on how we wanted so badly to be the best at what we do, occurred, as it always does. ..dreams for the future, reminiscing old stories, and maybe a little bit about guys, too. [ about my friend and I: we are the kind that strive for balance between all the important things in life. It’s a task, but one worth it.]

It had been a mentally tiring and challenging week, so a walk outside and good conversation was everything I wanted.
And I bring this up again, but the air was filled with a spark that anything could happen that night.

Being on the lookout for what this “anything” could be, we diverted our walk to a local hole-in-the-wall kinda place for some A/C, (it is still Atlanta after all and mid-September), and for a much needed iced something.
…Belly laughs you guys!! I don’t think I have laughed so hard in a long time! My friend was cracking me up. [Another thing about me..I love people’s quirks. You know those little things that make up a person. It’s kind of fun(ny) to see them over and over again. It means you are close enough to someone that you start to notice their little patterns and tendencies. Okay, maybe it’s just me. Well, this sweet friend may have the most endearing ones! Belly laughs.]

Laughs turned into real talk and then turned into selfies, then back to real talk and laughs. The night was full. Heart was full.

Her name was Anna and she sat next to me that night at the counter. I instantly felt like she had a story. I had to know it!

She was there with her husband and were in town for just an evening, as they were passing through to Tallahassee. Her ex-husband had just passed away the day before in a horrific accident due to flooded roads in his hometown. Anna has two teen children with this man. She told me all of this within the first two minutes of me telling her my name.
The tone of the night had just done some kind of 180-something long board trick (that I wanna learn on a board), real quick.

I couldn’t do anything but to ask this stranger if a prayer was okay. A prayer for strength. A prayer that she would be okay. Okay for her children.

Isn’t that how life is? In moments it’s everything every fiber in your body can feel and sense. Heavy care or concern being miles away from thought and in the next moment, that very same loaded feeling, but now set to a different tone.

I recently read something a dear friend wrote that she always does so eloquently. So wonderfully in fact that I even drafted it as a tweet, but had never posted, but it has continued to resonate with me since..

“‘You’re Okay.’

Maybe that’s all (they) need to hear.
Maybe that’s all you need to tell yourself.

‘You’re Okay.'”

We are all going through our battles. Life is challenging. We need each other. We aren’t meant to do it alone.

From my good friend filling me up with laughter after a week of 10-hour days and fatigue, to a stranger that God sat next to me with a heart-wrenching story that made life so much more real.

We are all going through this. Life. Doing it together is easier.

I’m beyond grateful for those in mine.

For Anna. Continued thoughts and prayers to her and her family in this difficult time.

The quote I shared was written by my lovely friend, Hannah. She writes really good. Better than me. http://hannahbrencher.com/

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