The second question friends ask after I tell them I’ve started a blog is usually, “Millywhat?”
I know. Unusual name. But there’s a story. (There’s always a story.)
I’ve debated about if or when I’d tell that story here. There’s something kind of fun about keeping you guessing. I’m sure you lay awake at night trying to unravel the mystery…
I love they way the word sounds. It’s whimsical and fun and a little silly. It feels kind of girly and kind of odd. Exactly like a certain friendship I have. Let me explain.
Over 30 years ago, I met Lisa in high school. (Can I pause here for a moment? I think someone did the math wrong. I could not possibly have been in high school over 30 years ago. I digress…) Lisa sat next to me in Mrs. Moser’s biology class. We both were slightly shy and slightly dorky and became fast friends. We pined over boys. We worked together at Nordstrom (where the addiction began). She taught me how to drive on the freeway and once on the sidewalk. Because neither of us had a sense of direction, we often got ridiculously lost. But we navigated the triumphs and heartaches of those important years, and we freakin’ laughed our faces off most of the time.
Somehow, I’m not sure how, we came across this name, Milly Pang. And we thought it was awesome. It quickly became the name we each answered to. It morphed into one word: Millypang! Sometimes it was MP and if we were feeling especially sassy, just Milly.
Time passes and friendships evolve. Ours has and it’s endured miles and years and life kicking the crap out of us. It’s also made us both better.
Those kinds of friendships from years ago are valuable and rare, where you know each other’s parents and you remember each other’s first car and first boyfriend. Or those friendships from later, but no less important years of college or early marriage or new babies or your first home in the same cul-de-sac. Those people who, if you could pick your family, you would pick them. They weave in and around your life and give you a sense of personal history and of belonging. Of being known.
What about you? Who is that person for you? Is it someone you are in touch with now or have time and life caused a drift? The latter isn’t a bad thing. That person or people still helped shape who you are today. Those friendships are still important, even from a distance. What if you reached out? What if you dropped a line and just said “Thank you.” Or “Tell me about your world now.” No big declaration or grand gesture. Just connection. Doing something like that may totally confuse the person or it may make their whole day.
So the name of this space is a fun, happy name. Moreover, it’s a tribute to those people who are important to us. To those who help us become who we are meant to be. To this day, I’ll call Lisa and she’ll answer with a resounding “MILLYPANG!” It makes me smile.