I remember the first time I spoke to Megan. It wasn’t ages ago or anything like that (maybe a few years now), but the interaction stuck with me. I initiated a conversation with her at the gym in an attempt to step outside my comfort zone and challenge myself to connect, even on a basic level, with people in my community. After a short time of admiring her super rad beast mode ways (we all do that while pretending not do to that at the gym, right?), I finally decided to break that little social barrier. I immediately discovered that task is a bit more challenging at the gym. Everyone is focused. Everyone is out of breath. Everyone has ear buds crammed into their heads, cranked up to 11. So the little barrier can be quite strong at the gym. But I like to think that I’m quite strong, too. That’s what too much time at the gym will make you believe. I think I started out by asking, “Can I just follow you around and try to do whatever it is you’re doing? Because… you. are. awesome.” I’m sure there were some high-level training details offered. And maybe I exchanged an admission that I don’t really know what I’m doing. However the conversation went, there was something in the dynamic that immediately changed how I perceived this person. I’ve heard it called a spark. I’ve heard it called a light. And I like those metaphors. Something intense and bright where there was once nothing. Something memorable. Something warm. That’s Megan.
She became a gym friend. That was it. And that was fine.
But in the last year or two, I’ve become outside-of-the-gym friends with Megan. Which is a pretty big deal. We’re like… real friends now. We talk about life – all the big and small things that make it hilarious and challenging and amazing. We are vulnerable and authentic with each other, because we want to know each other.
What I’ve learned while getting to know Megan is that she has a wildly unique brand of love. Her love is a straight-up, raw, awesome, unapologetic, passionate thing. She is the kind of person who loves loudly. And that’s my kind of person. In my eyes, that’s where her greatest strengths lie. Her physical strength — which is greatly admirable, no doubt — is only a surface feature of who this incredible person is. She trains hard. She focuses on health and wellness. She inspires others. Let there be no mistake: she is a badass. But, I admire her, first and foremost, for her genuine loving nature that surpasses expectations.
When my incredible friend mentioned doing a “Fit Over 40” photo session, I was ecstatic. I knew we would have an amazing time working together, and we most definitely did. I’m really proud of the finished products, and proud to call this awesome person my friend.