One of the best things about living out in the middle of nowhere (or sorta anyway) is the fact that you get your privacy. Its quiet, it’s peaceful. I can run around ass naked all over the ranch if I want, I can go to the bathroom outside whenever I want and don’t have to worry about a nosy neighbor trying to creep a peep.
That also has it’s disadvantages, it’s not really that convenient for visits from folks from Austin or San Antonio. The distance, coupled with the fact my wife and I have a three year old, we really don’t get out all that much. But we have some dedicated and amazing friends that visit us often. For that, we are very thankful. We understand the inconvenience and the drive back late at night, and it’s awesome that they come out to hang out.
Usually it’s a few couples; and we drink and have dinner and sit outside under the stars and try to solve the worlds problems under the influence of alcohol. It really is great.
The other night I got the opportunity to hang out with an old friend; just him, his wife, Moose (my wife) and I. Besides the occasional lunch or group gathering over here, my time spent with Pete (@bkapete on instagram) has really been limited as of late I realized.
Pete, realistically is my oldest friend. We met in high school, I was a freshman and he was a sophomore. We hit it off in our own dysfunctional way…condescending toward others and constantly trying to reinvent ourselves and the social wheel. Unsuccessfully I might add.
The stories I could tell about the antics and shenanigans we pulled over the course of high school would probably end up with me in jail. What’s the statute of limitations on shitting inside someone’s mailbox?
Relationships are really the basis of my life. Sure, they can change just like a career or an address, but overall they are my constant of happiness. Money can come and it can go, I can always make more tomorrow…but a good friend or the love of my mother, I would hate to live without that. The hugs from my little girl or the adoring look from my wife while she tells me about her day, it’s the little things.
That being said, as I grew up and as more time passed, more things happened and I realized how important it was to be able to hold onto those lessons that life gives you and take the important things from them with you. I know that sounds obvious, but it’s a real bitch when it’s actually happening to you.
I feel like my real turning point was right around a year into my courtship of my future wife. Talk about the good rubbing off on the bad. My wife has showed me how to treat others, even when they are not treating you the best (and to me that is the most key time to treat them right). She has shown me so much, but the main take away for me at that time was her ability to be a damn good friend. It showed me how to be a better friend.
Pete was the best man in my wedding (which was just over 5 years ago, we met about 19 years ago ) and since that point in time we have been diligently working to strengthen our relationship. I think that the birth of my daughter has given me a fresh perspective on what is truly important in a friendship and a relationship. You have to nurture it, respect it, be mindful of how you handle difficulty; it’s like a child. It’s ever evolving and more so even ever complicating. People will grow and change, interests will grow and change, and if you are lucky enough to surround yourself with great people that you get to grow with, it’s truly a blessing.
The other night allowed Pete and I to just kick it; drink some cocktails and have a good time. We enjoyed good conversation with our wives and as all the world was playing out around me I looked around and savored every moment I could. We spoke of the upcoming birth of their son, and the fears we have as adults, being Dads and simply holding true to who we are inside.
I will hold those times with me and they will fit into my story and I can only hope that as the days go by, I get to experience so many more of them. That one day I will be able to look back and read my story all over again and think “man, I lived a great life”.
So here’s one to you Bud, Cheers.
NOTE: Four days after this evening Pete and his wife welcomed the birth of their first child, a baby boy. Life hasn’t been easy for the little guy so far, and while things don’t always go as planned, we get to take the good from them and forge on-things that I know this new little family will do wonderfully.
So here’s another one to you Little Guy, Cheers.