What friendship is
A month ago, I blogged about the passing of Mrs. HRNasty. She was my best friend and proofread these posts. The past couple of months have been a blur and I wouldn’t have gotten through it without some amazing friends both old and new. I have learned a lot about myself and specifically about “friendship” and wanted to share the stories. The support we have received from old friends and new has been nothing short of amazing. So many people selfishly gave their time and energy to help Adi and myself, and although not enough, this post is the least I can do. In addition to the circle of friends I know and trust, there are friends we haven’t seen in years that helped. There are also friends of Mrs. HRNasty who I had never met and made me feel like a long-lost friend. So let me start with “Thank you for your friendship”.
LaurenP: As always, you were there for me when I needed support. There were a number of tasks I really didn’t want to face alone, and you made sure I didn’t have to. You cried for me and you made time for me on very short notice to help. You made sure the paperwork was taken care of when I couldn’t think straight. Mrs. HRN always loved and trusted you. She appreciated that you have always looked out for me over the years and I know she would have thought it was perfect you were there for me now. How can I ever return the favor? Thank you.
TianaB: Thank you so much for all of your support. Whenever we met, you were always there with a big hug and smile. You always make me feel like I matter. The birthday surprise was a great touch. It is hard for me to accept help or kindness and your text (below with permission) was perfect and helped many sleepless nights and made it easier to accept help. Thank you for your gift.
You’ve always been the wind in our sails, so helping you through your storm really is an honor. You’re the strongest person I know. And I know you’d get through this nightmare without the help. But allowing us to give you and hand is. . . there are no words. We love you. And we’ll do anything we can to make this dark time a little brighter.
KeithS: You called every day, hoping I wouldn’t answer the phone and would get my VM because you didn’t know what to say. Despite knowing it was a hard call, you made it and were there for me. Even though you were across the country, I knew you would do anything you could. I knew those calls would be emotional and as much as I didn’t want to pick up, I did. You have done so much for my career and financial situation. If it weren’t for you, I wouldn’t have been able to take the time off to stay with Mrs. HRN or successfully fight the paperwork battles. You are an amazing friend. Thank you!
JeffM: I think you take pride in the fact that folks don’t always take you seriously. By now you know I look at you as one of the smartest technologists in the city and the guy that will always care. You were one of the few people who visited us in the hospital last year and the guy that made it out this last cycle. Leaving groceries on the front porch in an effort to respect our space. You have a lot of style Brother and it is great knowing you are in our corner. I know you will always have my back. Thank you.
YorkB: What can I say. As a CEO, you were “soliddddd”. As a friend, I couldn’t ask for more. You checked in, you gave us space. You brought your son to help us move furniture when we needed room for hospital equipment and brought in AC when we had the heat wave. The bags of gourmet meals were over the top. Your entire family was there for us and the love they showed was unquestionable. Thank you.
KaityS: I really appreciate what you said about not knowing Mrs. HRN. You explained that she helped me grow over the years and so you feel that you grew through her because you grew threw me. Pretty special. She watched you grow up, loved going to your Cheer competitions, and was always in awe of your maturity. I know I will be reporting to you someday, and despite that, you treat me like an equal and a colleague. Thank you for keeping me company and allowing me to show you “My Seattle” these past few months. I look forward to seeing “Your Manhattan”.
KathyM, JamieM and JennyM: You have been Mrs. HRNasty’s friend for over 20 years. We have watched your children grow up and the circle is now complete because Jamien and Jenny were there for the both of us. When we were in the hospital, you treated Jane as the longtime friend she is and not as a patient. The conversations the three of us shared were normal everyday conversations and not focused on our condition or the negative. Jamien and Jenny, provided the same. Jenny, had just met Mrs. HRN and had a way of making everyone feel so comfortable during a stressful time. She radiates inner beauty and they are one of the most attractive couples we know. Even though your schedule was filled with travel, you made sure we were taken care of. The help you provided for Mrs. HRN’s celebration was amazing. I didn’t have to do a thing. I know you were much closer to Mrs. HRN, but you, your husband and your children made me feel like I was just as close and part of the family. Thank you.
MattW: Dude, I don’t know what to say. You have taken care of me on so many fishing trips over the years, it makes sense you would take care of me now. This is what friendship is all about. You figured out how to host close to 200 guests at Mrs. HRN’s celebration with an award-winning chef on very short notice. Without complaint drove 70 miles one way every day for a week just to check in on me. I saw you cleaning up after Adi the morning of the celebration so the place would be respectable. Despite being against the celebration being scheduled so early because I didn’t have the heart to clean up the place after everyone left and you made sure I didn’t have to do a thing. I really don’t know how to thank you for everything. You always know when to push me. Taking the trip to Montana was another example. A box of Series P No. 2’s wouldn’t be enough. Thank you.
Leisl: As always, you took the time out to listen to me when I had a moral dilemma and was questioning my direction. Knowing you will listen and call me on my bullshit is a luxury that not many have. You always find a way to steer me back on course with a carrot instead of a stick and as the guy that is usually counted on for guidance, I appreciate it more than you know. Thank you for the peace of mind.
JoeW: I was hesitant on the Montana fishing trip because it was so soon after, but really glad we went. It was great to hang out with you, see Ke’lah and meet the little ones. I don’t know what I would have done back home for my birthday and am really glad I could share it with you and the Donkey. I learned a ton from you as always watching you cast tiny bugs to rising fish across multiple currents 2 inches off the bank. You are a Jedi. As the smaller guy on every trip, I don’t fish from the front of the boat much, let alone all day. I couldn’t have asked for a better birthday or a better fishing trip. Thank you, Brother! Ke’lah, thank you for giving him up for three days. With a newborn in the house, I know it isn’t easy. (Well, I don’t know, but I can imagine). Thank you to all 4 of you.
AnnaL: For sharing your Beyonce concert stories with us during your visits to the hospital. You treated us as friends and not as patients. You made us laugh and shared your personal stories and in the end, you took our minds off of the present situation. We both really enjoyed it when you visited us. You were comfortable with your self, the situation and didn’t treat us differently. Thank you!
Megan and JillB: When I really needed help taking care of Mrs. HRN, you magically showed up on my doorstep and took the initiative. I didn’t know what to do with myself. It was the first time in months that I actually sat down and didn’t have to do anything. I didn’t feel guilty about resting because you had the situation in hand. You validated the medication and our evening with Mrs. HRN was the last night where she was communicative. She articulated to us that she wasn’t in pain and without your medical background; I probably would have taken a different path. You held my hand and not only let me cry you encouraged me. As a guy from a culture that isn’t supposed to show emotion, I felt safe. You always found a way to see the glass half full. Thank you.
MichelJ: Dude, what can I say? You really gave me a sense of pride when so many of Mrs. HRNasty’s colleagues continued to show up and visit us at the hospital. In the HRNasty house, I am usually the one focused on career, but all the support, visits, laughter and dinners reinforced to me that Mrs. HRNasty had a career to be just as proud of. I know she was proud that she had so many colleagues coming to visit her as well. She worried about me less with you guys watching my back and making sure I was fed. You provided us both with an incredible gift. Thank you Brother.
StephanieF and Jana: I met you both through Mrs. HRNasty, but you treated me as if I worked with you and we have known each other for years. You guys brought food to the hospital for me and kept Mrs. HRNasty company to break up the monotony. Even now, we share great times making pasta and smoking cigars. Your friendship means a ton and I look forward to sharing time together.
Dr. MishaH: You are a professional and a gentleman. I really don’t know how else to put it. This is probably the shortest thank you on the list but for me, professional and gentleman is the top of my food chain. We both had a ton of confidence in your ability and your bedside manner was perfect for us. We really could not have asked for a better fit. You were honest and transparent with me, and you protected Mrs. HRNasty when we needed to. I honestly felt like Ichiro was at the plate. If it could be done, you would do it. This one was out of our control. You have my utmost respect as a friend and a surgeon. Thank you.
Doctor Wes: You were the one piece of continuity we had with the breast cancer last year and most recently the lung cancer. Mrs. HRNasty absolutely adored you. I respect the hell out of you and I hope that you continue to help others the way you cared for the both of us. Keep the faith. I only do one thing at work and that evaluates people for potential. You are one of the smart ones. Stick with it. I personally had the utmost confidence in what was happening at the hospital because I knew you would do whatever you could for us professionally and personally. I don’t know any doctors/surgeons that offer to help us re-build a deck. Protect your hand’s Brother! Looking forward to getting on the motorcycles together. Thank you!
Doctor JanieG: You were more than a doctor or surgeon, you were a friend. You made Jane feel special as a patient and no one would have blamed you if you were not around as her condition this time around wasn’t in your wheelhouse. I was able to provide love, but you made her feel special and important as a person. She really did feel individually special when you came by to visit every day. She admired you for being a surgeon, and a mom with style. When you visited our home with gifts, it was over the top. She (we) REALLY appreciated seeing you towards the end and it meant the world to her. I am glad that you were able to leave her with that feeling of importance. Your counsel to me was invaluable. Thank you SO much for everything and your continued support.
Bronwyn: Thank you so much for making the trip up to visit during Mrs. HRNasty’s celebration of life. I know your friendship goes back years and years. I just wish I could have spent more time with you. Mrs. HRNasty had a friend who recently passed of cancer and she flew out a number of times to visit her so I know she appreciates your gesture. In these days of email and “we’ll do lunch”, it is a rare gesture to make a trip like this on short notice and it doesn’t go unnoticed. Thank you SO much for flying up to see us.
TamiL: Thanks for keeping me company these past few weekends. The opportunity to hang out with you, without any pressure to impress, or have to do anything for that matter really was a luxury. You never asked me about our situation and when I wasn’t very talkative, which was often, you kept the conversation going. You are great company and I really do hope we can continue to explore PNW together. Thank you.
EricD: Brother, not sure what to say. I am speechless and every time I see you, I end up breaking down. You prepared food for close to 200 people on short notice and when I approached you to settle the bill you said “You picked a bad week to get on crack and heroin brother. You aren’t paying for anything”. When I tried to settle up again a few weeks later on the water too, you explained that this is what friends do for each other, it was YOUR honor and that I should just accept it. That wasn’t Costco finger food. As a James Beard nominee, I don’t even know what that menu would run or what it took to source all those oysters. To find out you were closing on a new home while trying to open your second Seattle restaurant Flint Creek in the same time frame kills me. You and MattW really honored Mrs. HRNasty and I am at a loss on how to repay you. You are a stand up dude and I would share a run on a river with you anytime. From the bottom of my heart, thank you so much. Jane’s celebration would not have been the same without you and your crew. I hope that I can be half as gracious in someone else’s time of need.
CSP: Dude, you hung out with me for the first couple of nights so I wouldn’t be alone or do anything stupid. You made sure I was able to get wet and swing a fly shortly after on the Cowlitz River. You guys even thought about me on your trip to Europe and brought back the beautiful scarf. “Thank you” to you and Kat for your friendship.
LeslieL aka Asian Barbie: Visiting you at your salon was my first time out of the house after Mrs. HRNasty passed and I am glad it was you taking care of me. It means something that you and Mrs. HRN go back close to 30 plus years and we all have history. Getting my hair cut isn’t just about looking cleaned up, it is about feeling good and gaining a bit of confidence after a setback. You gave me that and I know Mrs. HRNasty loves that you are looking after me moving forward because you both speak your mind and have an opinion.
Courtney: You and Bryson took care of Adi and let us know it was your pleasure every step of the way. I couldn’t even reimburse you for the cost of Adi’s food. Mrs. HRNasty really enjoyed the pictures you sent of her and I know I have said this, but it really allowed both of us to concentrate on Mrs. HRNasty. If you knew how much your selflessness meant to us, you would know the envelope wasn’t heavy enough.
AmandaB: Your painting of the first dozen eggs that Mrs. HRNasty gave you from our chickens is priceless at so many levels. She loved the chickens but we rarely eat eggs. I know she loved bringing the eggs into work and giving them to friends because of all the work she put into the chickens when she came home from work. She didn’t want money, she just loved giving them away. We would occasionally get baked goods but I know she would absolutely adore and brag about your painting and more specifically the gesture. It is something we will be showing off and talking about for a very long time.
AndrewW: We haven’t seen or fished with each other in 10 plus years but it felt like old times. You pulled me into the back room and said I would have a lot of days “staring at the wall” and I should have something to stare at. Thank you, Brother. For continuing to reach out and offering a way to blow off steam. For offering to take me to your Spirit water, the Metolious River. I couldn’t make it as I was off to Montana, but you brought me a piece of your home waters to hang on the wall I DO find myself staring at. All I can say is “thank you”. Looking forward to sharing some sushi and moving water with you very soon.
I know I am forgetting a lot of people. To all the folks that came out to Mrs. HRNasty’s celebration, thank you. I knew this celebration was as much for me as it was for everyone else. I was able to see how much of an impact Mrs. HRNasty had on so many people and how much support the both of us have. I learned the meaning of what friendship can and should be. I think that is a great gift and legacy to leave.
nasty: an unreal maneuver of incredible technique, something that is ridiculously good, tricky and manipulative but with a result that can’t help but be admired, a phrase used to describe someone who is good at something. “He has a nasty forkball”.