Lessons Learned

Because I’ve been busy, I continue my daily letter writing to the important people in my life before I leave – so part 2 for today before I crank up my heater and lay down with my cats. 

Dear Latessa, 

  My Tessa! I have so much love and adoration for you that I nearly burst every time I see you. You quickly became my favorite manager to work with, and I always look forward to seeing you when I work. You have been so good to me, and so sweet to me, and you always make work something fun to look forward to- because I know we’ll be rocking it out as a team and still have fun and have great conversations.

  But not only are you fun to work with and be around, you also inspired me so much. You remind me all the time to be thankful for what I have, and be grateful for having another day on earth and another breath in my chest. You are one of the hardest workers I know, and I never hear you seriously complaining- you always find something positive in what you do, some reason to keep doing it. Somewhere between smacking the serve button and capping drinks- you became a role model, and someone that I would love to be more like. You’re loving, you’re a sweetheart, you’re a good listener, you’re fucking hilarious, and you are so good at what you do. 

   You’ve taught me so much in the time I’ve gotten to work with you, and I am so grateful for that. I know that even though I’m leaving soon, we will keep in touch constantly and you and Bonnie will come visit me so I can show you New York. I am forever grateful that I’ve had the chance to work with you and get to know you- because you have inspired me endlessly, and I adore you so much for that. You make the day go by faster, and make me laugh and take a breath when I get too stressed out. We make one hell of a team when we’re on top of things, and I wish I could kidnap you and take you with me. 

  Thank you so much for all the times you helped me at work (which is a LOT), and everything you’ve taught me. I wish the best for you at school and can’t wait to see you and Bonnie again when I’m out of training. I’m forever grateful that you’re in my life, and whenever I get stressed, I’ll be thinking of you.

   I love you Tessa! And don’t even think about saying you love me more! lol 

                 Iiae 

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Letters of Love

Somehow a few days have passed since my last blog, when I’d intended to be blogging daily until I left. But between work and life, the time slipped by- as it has for the past several months. Most of the time I don’t even know what day it is. But to make up for it, I’ll write two letters today- and considering it’s currently blizzarding outside and i’ve been trapped in my house alone with my Great Grandmother with no internet, phone, cell phone, and shakey power- I figured I could sit down to write. 

~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~

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Dear Kitten,

   I have no words to accurately describe how I feel. For the past 6 years, you’ve been the one constant thing in my life. Either I was constantly with you, or I was constantly missing you. Even when we fought, when we didn’t talk for months- or years- I missed you. Every day. The days we spent together were the best, and are some of my best memories. Your family has been so good to me, and I’ve always felt like they were my family, as well. 

    I love you so much, and the thought of leaving you once again sends currents of pain through me. Being apart from you, not being there for you – it’s one of the worst things I’ve done through my life, and unfortunately it seems that I’m constantly doing it. But at least this time, it’s because I had to go- for both of us. So that I can get out of here, and when I’m stabilized somewhere, I can bring you with me. We can both be free.

  There is so much about you that I adore. Your heart. The way you smile. The way you look when you pick me up in your pajamas with your bed hair. The way you huh-shoo huh-shoo when I rub your back. The way you share everything with me and always seem to know what will make me smile, or what I’m thinking. I still remember when we first met and I was practically captivated by you. I thought you were the prettiest girl I’d ever seen. I still remember the first words we ever said to each other. I remember exactly where we were standing. I remember exactly what I thought. I remember so many things, that I think most of my memories are of you. 

  You’ve given me so much, since we’ve known each other. Sometimes it was a reason to live, sometimes it was silly string bracelets. But everything, no matter how big or small- I’m grateful for. I’m thankful that I have another chance to spend time with you. I’m thankful you met me at our bridge once again so we could talk. I’m thankful that I have someone like you in my life- that is so completely my other half that when we’re at odds I am literally incomplete. 

   I want nothing but the best for you, and know that you will find it. Whether it’s with me, with yourself, or with someone else. You are capable of so much, and deserve so much. I know that some days you feel like you’re trapped and stuck in this place with no chance of escape. But you’re not. I promise you that much. 

So thank you for being my Kitten, my other half, and my best friend. I know that it will be hard to be apart again, but I also know that it will be okay. No matter how much time passes, or how split our paths get- we always, always, will find a way back to each other. Because in the end our paths cross more than they separate, and we were meant to be in each others lives. 

   I love you always, even when I pretend I don’t,

             Kiki

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Two Weeks of Goodbyes

Two Weeks.

That is exactly how long I have left until I leave this chapter of my life behind and start my new journey as an American Airman.

The thought of this is still unreal to me, and I’m waiting for it to sink in completely. I walk into my very empty room and look around at the few decorations and photographs I’ve left up
and think to myself “this isn’t my room anymore.” Of course, in ways it will always be -my- room, but for all intensive purposes, it no longer is. I wont be coming home to this room, I wont be covering the wall in more photographs or posters. I wont curl up in my bed after a long day and sleep. I wont have these comforting walls to run to when I need to escape the overwhelming reality that might be facing me. My safe haven, my room, my belongings- I have to part with.

As I go through my things and wonder what I should keep for my future self and what I should part with, little voices inside tell me that there is a good chance I’ll never use these things again. Not for several years. Sometimes, this is a depressing thought. I’m sentimental, I want all of my pictures, letters,  knick-knacks, and presents with me all the time. If I miss someone I want to be able to touch some sort of physical reminder of our relationship, friendship, or a memory we shared. It keeps me connected with people, it keeps them near to me even if they are thousands of miles away.

But in other ways, it’s freeing. I have a new start, a way to start from scratch. Build my own life, and then when I’m settled, bring these pieces from my past back in. I waiver back and forth between sadness and excitement at my future constantly.

Then I stop to think- I’m not the only one affected by this. I’m saying goodbye to all of these people that I hold so dearly- but at the same time, I’m forcing them to say goodbye to me. I worked into their lives, and then suddenly I’m leaving for an unknown amount of time. Yes, it’s life. But it’s also painful.

Which is why for the next two weeks, I’m going to dedicate my blogging to letters to individual people. Thanking them, reminiscing of our memories, and letting them know why they are so special to me. I want everyone to know what they mean to me, and what they’ve taught me.

With that said- I’ll begin today with my first letter letter.

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My mom, dad, sister, and me at my dads graduation.

Dear Mom and Dad,

  I know I need to start this letter with a thank you. No matter how many fights we’ve gotten in, how many times we’ve butt heads, disagreed, and so on- I’m still grateful for both of you. For a lot of reasons. Even if I don’t act like it, I am. the older I’ve gotten the more I recognized the things you did for me, the things you tried to do for me, and the intentions behind your actions. Even if you didn’t know how to respond to things I did or said, and even if I didn’t turn out to be the daughter you envisioned I would- I know you both still tried, and a lot of what you did- you did for me.

My teenage bitterness and anger turned into appreciation and gratitude when I saw the things you did for me, and the way you’ve raised me. I’m forever grateful that I was raised with the manners, respect, and compassion that I have. It has gotten me far in life, and I know it will continue to do so. You taught me to work hard and always do my best at everything, you taught me to be kind to people even if they weren’t kind to me. You taught me how to be respectful and grateful. You taught me so much that I didn’t realize- until I realized that not everyone behaves the way I do. My attitude in the outside world is a reflection of how I was raised. And while their may have been faults in my childhood, they only served to shape me. And I thank you for that, because I know I could have been so much worse off.

I know there are things that I do and paths that I’ve chosen that you don’t necessarily agree with, and some that possibly even disappoint you. But I hope that throughout my life I still manage to do things that please you and make you proud of me, as well- and I hope that down the line when I’m living my dreams and doing what I love, you’ll be able to smile and proudly say that I’m your daughter.

Thank you for everything you’ve done for me, and everything you’ve given to me. And thank you for taking care of my beloved babies Quinn, Halo, and Azera- while I’m away on my trips, and off to the Air Force.

Love,

   Your Nena, Iiae.

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My dad and I, when I was around 1yr.

My mom and I this year, when I took her to see Pat Benatar, Journey, and Loverboy

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My dad and I at the Emilie Autumn concert this year

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My mom and I at my Great Grandmothers house