I've been thinking a lot about the concept of community. I've always been surrounded by people, and thankfully it's been a supportive and loving group of people throughout my life. I'm the youngest of four kids, my parents are still happily married (I'm proud to say that I feel like they're happier now more than ever), and now, all three of my siblings are happily married, as well - and I usually drop the "in-law" portion when referring to their spouses. They are my brothers and sister. Granted, this gets very confusing when I talk about them to other people. I'm pretty sure there are a few members of society who think I come from some strange incestuous clan. I don't. Don't worry.

Over the years, however, my family has naturally spread out. We all live in different places across the United States, and while I still speak on the phone with them all regularly, it's difficult to include them in my every day life the way that I used to be able to. So, as almost all people end up doing, I've found myself in another family: my friends.

These past few weeks have been less then kind. Not just to me, but for a few people in my pseudo-family. Like I mentioned a few blog posts back, relationships (yes, plural) have ended or been restrained drastically, hospitals have been visited on multiple occasions, and jobs have taken their toll. Weirdly enough, though, we've all been laughing. Sure, tears have been shed, but we've kept each other laughing. This is amazing to me. We're all so broken in so many ways, but we've come together in an awesome mosaic of insanity and support. And wine. There's been a lot of wine.

Do I have extreme issues when it comes to being alone? Yes, but then I remember that I'm not alone. I have so many people who love and support me, and that is the coolest feeling in the world.

And then, on top of that, there's the blogging community. HOLY COW, YOU GUYS ARE AWESOME. I have gotten emails, comments, and various messages of support from people who have never even met me face-to-face. You have all made me smile, weep, and thank God for the unconditional support and caring that you've all expressed. I really cannot thank you enough. For those of you that I haven't responded to personally yet, it's coming. I just have to find the time and the words to express how truly grateful I am.

Community is a freaking amazing thing. I hope each and every one of you out there has a group of people you can rely on. I don't know what I would do without them. My sisters and brothers, my mom and dad, my friends, my readers, even my co-workers. I am overwhelmingly blessed with all of you in my life.

So yeah... I guess I just needed to share that and thank you all.

Now, go out and hug someone. They probably need it. Face it, you could use one, too, right?