I. Laughed. So. Hard.
I had to stumble to the car and sit down to catch my breath. Then I laughed some more. I couldn't stop. I just kept laughing.
We had been out and about browsing at furniture and were headed back to the car. I was walking a bit ahead with Shannon, chattering and rattling on about who knows what when her hesitant voice broke into our conversation.
I turned to face her. She was bent over staring at... garbage in the parking lot. She seemed to be debating something in her head.
"I think I feel inspired..."
We waited for an explanation. Suddenly, decidedly, she snapped upright with an old clothes hanger dangling from her finger. A disgusting, sticky, obviously rolled over by gigantic SUV's several times clothes hanger.
An awkward moment of silence filled the space between us, "Huh? Are you being serious?"
"No, really. Are you being...for real?"
She shot me a look of feigned betrayal, "Yes! I feel inspired by it! Don't mock me!"
Another moment of silence rolled by and then I sort of chuckled, a deep, rising from my gut chuckle that got louder and louder until I had tears rolling down my face and stumbled towards the car in hysterics. I fell into the passenger's seat both unable and unwilling to stop, enjoying the moment entirely. I laughed and laughed and laughed, digging in my purse for my iphone.
Still giggling, barely able to see thru the tears in my eyes, I begged her to pose with it, "Please, Erin. Please. I have to remember this moment forever!"
You can see the sarcasm on her face. I love it. So much.
On the one hand was my unashamed, blatant mockery, but on the other was a moment of sheer celebration and bliss. Though I made fun of her, I absolutely, completely identified. In fact, I'm typically the butt of jokes for the very same reason. It's all in good fun, I don't take any kind of offense. But I have to admit it's terribly refreshing to have moments of connection with another soul who totally gets it, who understands, who you can say things to like, "I feel inspired by this nasty hanger..." and not feel like a weirdo. (Admittedly they may laugh at you at first, but later they'll do something like post a blog about how much they identified with you in that moment ;-)
And tonight, in a few short hours, she's holding her first official art show. I could not be more excited! I'm so proud of her. Proud of her for facing her fears, for trekking around the globe entirely alone for the single purpose of honing her craft, for making hard, gut-wrenching decisions she never thought she'd have to make, for working so hard day in and out to make her dream reality, for expanding her horizons, for not settling, for believing, for dreaming... Oh how she inspires me, for all of these reasons, definitely, but also for silly moments with dirty hangers in parking lots.
So cheers to you, my treasured friend, for everything you are. And tonight, well, this is just the beginning...
Do you have a friend who inspires you? Who you can laugh at and with because you really do understand each other?