*Sigh* Where to begin?
You know that person, in your life, that you can’t imagine not being there? You know that person who knows everything about you and loves you anyway, flaws and all? You know that person that opened you eyes to many new ideas and experiences and you’re so appreciative of that? You know that person that makes you laugh so hard that tears stream down your face and you may have peed a little? And you know that person you would do anything for? Kim is that person for me.
Kim is my best friend. I met her when I was a 15-year-old high school sophomore. #GoEastVikings! I ended up sitting next to her in photography class first period. I felt kind of weird in that class because I was the only sophomore (and youngest student) but Kim started talking to me right away. She was very friendly and introduced herself and helped me as I fumbled my way through that first class of making a camera out of an oatmeal container. Ok, let’s be real…that entire semester was one big fumble for me. Photography is not my thing. That’s why I use Instagram. But, she helped me through it all and was my comic relief when I would get frustrated for not being able to load the film into my camera using that damn black bag. I felt like we hit it off immediately and I looked forward to that class every day.
It was in that class that we started talking about soap operas. I have no idea why as I didn’t watch any myself but she watched “Days of Our Lives” and told me about it. I decided to give it a shot and, 19 years later, I’m still watching it. When a big storyline was about to reach its climax, we would watch it together. I think our favorite storyline was Marlena’s possession. YouTube it.
Any situation is more fun with her there. She has one of those contagious laughs that would make me laugh even harder…hense the peeing of the pants. “Days” can get super boring but she’s able to find the littlest things hilarious, like an expression or miscellaneous noise from a character. I’d have to try to hide the laughing- tears during said photography class because she’d make fun of our ridiculous teacher, who used to flirt with the blond senior girls, and I just couldn’t keep it together.
Not only did we watch “Days” together but we’d also watch “Beavis and Butthead.” One weekend we decided to have a marathon and let me tell you, I think I lost IQ points. For some reason she started calling me “Beavis” (to this day I still don’t know why) and that got shortened to “Beave” which finally turned into “Weave.” She literally used “Weave” instead of “Steph” all the time. It never bothered me though; I thought it was hilarious.
She had a funny way of describing things too. She thought most things were “diva.” A person could be diva, a situation could be diva, a dog could be diva, or a book could be diva. Everything could be diva! So…I started calling everything diva. Honestly, it really is the perfect word. My fitness name was not chosen at random.
One of the most special times I had with her was when I was a bridesmaid in her wedding. I was so excited that she asked me to be a part of it! She didn’t have a traditional wedding because she married a woman. It was a gorgeous outdoor ceremony and she and her wife looked beautiful and so happy.
My friendship with Kim lasted about 9 years. I feel terrible that it wasn’t longer. It would have been. It should have been. I know we would have been friends forever. Although, in a way, I guess I was friends with her for her forever. Kim passed away 10 years ago today. I’ve wanted to blog about her in the past but it didn’t feel right until now. It happened suddenly and unexpectedly and I was in shock for about 4 days after I was told she was gone. It wasn’t until I saw her at the viewing that I broke down and cried. No, not cried…bawled. The kind where you can’t catch your breath. When I made my way to the front of the line and got to her parents, all I could do was hug them and say I was sorry and tell them that she was my best friend. I don’t know how they remained so composed.
I have this one distinct memory of her trying to get me to sing harmony to the “Friends” theme song. God knows why. I refused because I can’t sing and nobody should be subjected to me trying to. I’m a neurotic station-changer and I heard “I’ll Be There For You” come on the radio the other day. Because I change the stations so often, I hear a variety of music and I almost never hear this song. As soon as I heard it, I thought of her. I don’t normally look too deep into this stuff but this time was weird because earlier that same day I had been talking to Kim’s younger brother via Facebook and we were trying to figure out the last time we saw each other in person. He said it was at the reception at his parent’s house after the funeral. In the times we’ve chatted during the 10 years she’s been gone, we’ve never really talked about Kim’s passing. And to make things a little weirder, the day before my talking to Kim’s brother and the song, someone asked me where the name “Fit Diva” came from. I explained that “diva” came from Kim and my husband suggested we add it to “fit” to make it more fun. It’s my way of remembering her every day. In my head I know it’s all a bunch of crazy coincidences. But I’m not sure my heart believes that.
There aren’t enough words to describe how much I miss her. I’m proud to have been her friend. I wish more people had the chance to know her. I admired her courage and strength for always being herself and never apologizing for it. She was just awesome.
Kim, you are fabulous.
xoxoxo The Fit Diva