What’s up, GRE! Long time no write. I’m answering the call for 2011 retrospectives.
My highlight this year, no lie, is actually the Pretty Good Podcast. If you want to narrow things down to a specific moment, it would have to be my first ever mention on the show, which made me totally lightheaded and giddy. But that’s really only the tip of the iceberg. I started listening to the show last year, I think, but THIS year is when I feel like it became a part of me, and I really learned what it meant to be a PGPeep. I have gotten to know some truly amazeballs people because of this show, and I couldn’t be happier about it. I am, overall, one of those severely antisocial types, constantly frustrated and disappointed with the world and the numbskulls that inhabit it. But meeting awesome Peep after awesome Peep has just been a cavalcade of joy and wonder. And I have you guys to thank for it. You’re the best! The show is the best. The Peeps are the best. And all of it together makes up the no-contest high mark of my 2011. Thank you all!
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I’m putting a break here, because my lowlight is actually SUPER low, and I don’t, in my heart, feel like it’s necessarily show material. But it’s a story I want to share, and at the end it comes with a way to help make it better. I’m not asking and I’m not expecting for this to be on the show, because it’s so…not the PGP vibe, I don’t think, if that makes any sense. But you asked, and I’m answering, and if you do end up feeling like spreading the word, then that would not be a bad thing, either. But seriously…don’t read on unless you’re ready for an unhealthy amount of sadness.
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My lowlight for 2011 happened only less than a month ago. At my day job, I work on a very small team, just three of us. As you can imagine, we’re a pretty tight bunch. One of those three was a lovely woman, pregnant with twins and about to become a mother for the first time, which was a dream come true for her. This is one of those people who just plain and simple leaves their mark, and it was sad times for us when she left the job to go on maternity leave. The day job is just a generic office gig; she was really a singer/songwriter, as well as, I should also point out, something of an accomplished voice actress! And, like I said, motherhood was always a goal of hers; she and her husband had been trying to have children for /years/, and she was super excited to be pregnant.
Right after Thanksgiving, we got the news. She had given birth to two lovely, healthy twin babies, a boy and a girl. She, herself, though, developed complications after the birth, and tragically, unimaginably, passed away mere hours afterward. It is a story I could not even imagine, let alone witness. Her husband was, of course, devastated. This was to be an epic celebration — the birth of his children — and now…this. The children are now his to raise without their mother, who would have loved them an unbelievable amount, of that I have no doubt. Everyone was just overwhelmed, both with grief and shock. I mean, who could expect, in this time and place, to lose somebody to childbirth. It’s just unthinkable.
Anyway. So that is the lowlight of my year. Honestly…of my life. I’ve never been this close to something this sad. If /anything/ good could come out of this, it’s that I’ve seen a remarkable amount of people pulling together to help. The lady in question was well-known and well-liked at the day job, and the company has really pulled together to help out the family. Outside the office, she had family, friends, and even fans, and the love and support that has surrounded this tragic event has been pretty amazing to witness.
And that, my PGP friends, brings me to the last thing I wanted to say. If anyone feels moved to contribute to the support of this family, I ask that they please visit thesnydertwins.com and consider making a donation to the family. These are people close to me, and I can state on my honor as a PGPeep that this is as good a cause as there is. No administrative charity nonsense, no mailing lists, no free stickers or calendars in the mail. This is a family that I know needs help, and it’s a way I know that help will get to them. And this is the only way I know to bring anything good out of this.
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I also hate to leave this email on such a downer, so I’ll tell you guys something else. It’s not quite true that that’s the only good I know to come out of this tragedy. The other thing that occurred to me, in fact the thing that occurs to me whenever I even hear about a situation like this, is that it reminds me that we only have a short time on this Earth, and all we can do with it is the best we can do with it. Things like this always remind me that we should treasure our loved ones while we can; in the end, that is what is truly important. And so I try to do that a little more, these days, and I can never say it too much: I love you guys, I love the show, and I love all the outstanding people I’ve met because of you along the way. Like DaveRich and Nichole Cee like to say, we are family. I’m not ashamed to say that I truly believe that, from the bottom of my heart.
So all pains and tragedies and lowlights aside, happy 2011 to you, the PGP, and the PGPeeps. Believe it or not, looking forward to 2012 and all the years to follow. Carry on! I remain, as always, your loyal fan…no. Your loyal friend.
Boom flashy flashy,