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Dear Stevia

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53 161

Story

I feel so lucky to have my own "dear sugar" in my dear friend, Caren. On a recent trip to visit Caren, we both had recently had been gifted a copy of Cheryl Strayed's "Tiny Beautiful Things", an advice column that goes beyond anything you would think of in a typical trite advice column. Coincidentally enough, both Caren and I were given a copy of the book on the thursday before I flew out for my visit. And, while we approached the book somewhat reluctantly (Ok, I was way more reluctant than Caren), we quickly became obsessed with it. Over the course of my trip, and in the most recent months, I have had my own need for the quality and depth of Dear Sugar's advice and have had that in my very own "Dear Stevia" of Caren (named after our favorite healthy alternative to sugar). Caren has always been an amazing listener, being active and incredibly thoughtful and more recently with the challenges that I have come up against, I have really appreciated the same care and thought that she puts into her advice. She is able to quickly assess what the real problem is, what is at the heart of the often times surface problem and to help me see the answer that I had already decided but was too afraid/reluctant to see. She gives her friends the gift of time and space to talk as long as we need to sort through the mess that can be as seemingly small as a boy issue to a much larger and more ongoing challenge of family issues. She is an incredibly supportive friend that makes her friendships a priority by being there when we need her and making it a priority to visit our little friend group on a frequent basis. It is largely because of Caren's visits that we have so many wonderful memories together despite living in different parts of the country. "Actively caring" couldn't be a better description of the way Caren approaches all of those that are important to her in her life.

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