So today’s my mom’s 84th birthday. I’m so happy she is still with us because there have been some real health concerns the past few years, moreso since my dad died.

& I’ve decided, because she has often reminded me that I have always had great taste in friends, that I want to start a new tradition: to thank the people who have really been amazingly good to me, or for me, in the year past.

See the thing is I really had a spell there where I realized having good friends is not something I could take for granted. That is, my good taste, or my great luck, in choosing good friends took a wild vacation and left me in the lurch. I got hurt badly, and that has been such a rare occurrence in my life that on top of being hurtful it was disorienting and disquieting in a way I’m only now coming back from.

More gratitude is often a good answer to self pity, I’ve found, so let me say thank you to some people for being kind beyond measure, or sweet in some specific way, or who have just been rock solid in the last year or so and reminded me that faith in people may sometimes be misplaced but only in the specifics – not in principle.

All of my Sarahs, Celia, Jen, my sisters, my brother in law Ian, Mary, Erica, Darya, Lynne, Quince, Coby, Maurice, and Alex. My wife, of course, and my mom, with whom I’ve always had an amazing friendship, a particularly cool bond that only the youngest of a very large family gets, I think. I’m sure I forgot someone or many someones, and if I did, I’m sorry.

There’s this saying: let life bring me people I can help. Well, these are the people who got handed my mess of a self and who saw they could, and did.