The silent hum on my wrist alerts me to her presence. Hurriedly, I finish up what I am doing and sprint out the back door. She bounds towards me carrying the elixir of life. Thankfully, she has coffee. Not just any coffee, but the coffee that she hand roasts for her small business. I am grateful because she blesses me with her kindness almost weekly and we steal moments together connecting over shared stories and her restorative tincture.
To clarify, I have a slight addiction. It became clear to me when Duncan Donuts and Starbucks began tasting burned on my palate. I had officially turned to the dark side. Like tasting different flavors in a wine, I can now taste the chocolate, berry, and citrus in her coffee. We talk as we sip, sharing stories of crazy encounters with employees and clients, the tightrope of schooling children during a pandemic, balancing our careers, and the constant feelings of coming up short as mothers. Sometimes we walk, circles in the parking lot frantic with worry about parents and vaccines, did you hear the latest Dr. Osterholm Update and feeling despair about Variants of Concern. Together we sip and walk and talk and breathe.
In addition, she believes in community and in the greater good. She teaches her children and runs her business by those principles. Our friendship is not featured on the pages of Facebook or Instagram, it is not played out in combined vacations. It is a Friday evening text asking if I’m okay or me asking about her mom. Above all, my true addiction is to our friendship, for she is my community. Together we are stronger. I have many friends who cheer me on and lift me up from behind the scenes. It doesn’t need to be a public act or overt kindness. For these people, I am incredibly grateful. Foremost, for my friend with the coffee, the elixir of life, I owe you so much gratitude for walking me through kids, the pandemic, small business ownership, and for always being in my corner. Thank you.