I have learned over the past month how very, very bad I am at saying thank you. 

It is really weird when people, especially people you don’t even know, take time out of their lives to help you or even think about you. It’s disorienting, I guess. 

And I know I haven’t offered adequate thanks to the people who cooked meals, stayed with my brothers, sent flowers, prayed, sent text messages and emails and Tweets and cards, kept me company at the hospital.

And I can’t find any way to thank my parents, who essentially gave up their lives for the past month to sit in the hospital with me, then drive me back and forth and feed me and remind me to take my medicine.

 All of those things deserve more thanks than I know how to give. I’m a completely over-emotional, effusive person, but I find myself giving the most basic thank-yous these days. Many Facebook posts and texts offering help and prayers and thoughts have gone unanswered.

The thing is, I don’t know how. I get overwhelmed — and I want my “thank you” to be real. I don’t want to sound like I’m speaking from obligation, but I don’t want to sound like a greeting card, either. 

 But I do want to say thank you, however inadequately and from the bottom of my heart (see? Hallmark card) to anyone who has taken even a second to make my life a part of theirs.

Moving to a new city is exhilarating and refreshing and fun and very, very lonely. You are away from so much, you’re not in the midst of the life you’d built, and it can feel like you don’t have a support system at all.

That isn’t true, though — it’s never true — and this experience has reminded me of it. Some of the people who stepped up this week are people I talk to often. Some are people I don’t even know. But I am far from alone.

So, although I don’t know how to say it eloquently — even in this post, with the pressure more or less off — thank you all very, very much.

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