There are so many people I want to say “goodbye for now” to before we move, and on Friday night, I had the chance to do that with a very special group of friends.
Not my friends from grade school, or college, or work (who are also special, of course). The people I was with on Friday night have known me, literally, since the day I was born – they’re the friends my Mom and Dad grew up with. But they’ve been such an influential part of my life – guiding me, shaping me, and rooting for me (even now, when I’m 40 years old!) – that I think of them as my friends first, and the fact that they came into my life by being friends with my parents is just coincidental. Some of my first memories include not just my parents, but these guys and gals.
My parents were young when they got married and had me, and there were always people – these people – in the house, hanging out, watching a fight or a baseball game, or playing poker. One of the staples of my parents’ get-togethers was my dad cooking a full-blown, Waffle House-style breakfast as things were winding down. Very often, the smell of sausage and bacon would wake me up, so Mom and Dad would let me eat with everyone, and then put me back to bed.
My family, or at least the ones that I’ve been in contact with throughout my life, is small, and I’ve always envied people who have large families. But I realized on Friday night that my family is pretty big, even if they’re not blood relatives. These are as much my “aunts and uncles” as those who I share direct DNA with.
So, thank you, Leggs & Lisa, Ronnie & Libby, Manson & Sandy, Crazy Richard, Butch & Brenda, Wiley & Laura, Head & Wanda, and all the other friends of the “Eddie & Betty” show, for helping Mom and Dad out and for helping me get to where I am today.