Have you met Kori?
Kori is the bravest and strongest woman I've ever had the pleasure of calling a friend. She has survived some of the most hellish things you can imagine, and always finds a way to make something good come out of it.
A single mother of four, her kids count on her, love her, and appreciate her in a way that's not usually the typical experience, especially at these kids' ages. I called one time, and didn't leave a message. A few minutes later, her oldest son called me back (recognized my # from the caller id), and apologized for not getting to the phone in time. He very politely explained when his mother would be able to call me back. Seriously, how many kids do that for their mom's friends?
And she's always there for me. I called her a few weekends ago, and even though it was a hellish weekend for her, too, she was there for me. She let me cry and yell, she offered me her shoulder, even when she was in need.
As a lot of you know, Sylvia's been having a tough time of it lately. Kori came up with a brilliant idea. Since her son is close to Sylvia's age, and has had similar experiences, we offered them both the opportunity to become each other's pen pals. And they have both embraced the idea. I mailed Sylvia's second letter to Sam today. They're already pouring their hearts out to each other (keeping the small talk to a simple 'hey what's up') and know that someone out there gets it.
Just like I know Kori gets it. Gets me. Has seen me through every human emotion in these short but meaningful years of our friendship.
One day, Kori, we'll celebrate our birthdays together. One day, I'll be able to give you a real hug and you can laugh at me as I get weepy drunk and profess my love for you. I'll tell you to shut up when you get too down on yourself, and remind you of everything you've said and done that make you the most amazing woman I know.
Happy birthday to my heroine.